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  • 1854 Gold Full Sovereign Victoria Young Head Shield London 24493
  • 1854 Gold Full Sovereign Victoria Young Head Shield London 24494
  • 1854 Gold Full Sovereign Victoria Young Head Shield London 24493
  • 1854 Gold Full Sovereign Victoria Young Head Shield London 24494
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1854 Gold Full Sovereign Victoria London Mint

The 1854 gold sovereign is the seventh date for the Queen Victoria "second head" shield sovereign. This second type of Victoria sovereign was issued from 1848 to 1872, has a slightly larger head in lower relief, and the reverse legends are repositioned. 

There are three variations of the 1854 sovereign:

-> the usual design (raised engraver initials)
-> the usual design (incuse engraver initials)
-> an error where the C in VICTORIA on the obverse of the coin is cast over a rotated c.

For further information about the engravers initials, please see the More Info section below.

See the rest of the 1854 Sovereign Collection.

Photographs shown may not be the actual coin and may differ in terms of grade, die numbers, design flaws and other minor details. Contact us if you require a photograph prior to purchase.

from £477.64

(VAT Exempt)
Totals are approximate until metal prices are confirmed on the next LBMA fix.

More Info

Price List

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Terms & Delivery

Related Blogs

More Info

Until we came to show the Michael A Marsh reference numbers in the listings on this page, we had not realised for some reason that Michael Marsh's book "The Gold Sovereign" only makes passing reference to the fact that some sovereigns in this series have the engraver's initials WW on the truncation of Queen Victoria's neck incuse rather than raised. Spink show these as a separate and distinct variety. You can read more about this variation on our Raised and Incuse WW Initials - A Marsh Anomaly page.

All shield sovereigns from 1838 to 1852 have raised initials, all first type shields from 1856 to 1863 have incuse (cut-in) initials, while the three dates from 1853 to 1855 occur in both varieties.

We cannot think why Michael treated both varieties as the same. He states in both the 1980 and 2002 Golden Jubilee editions "These letters also appear incuse on some coins". Michael quite rightly went into great detail on a number of other coins, such as the 1859 Ansell variety which has an almost unnoticeable double ribbon line. Compared with the Ansell, we believe that the incuse WW initial are important enough to be recognised as a distinct and separate sub-type.

I had the pleasure and good fortune to have a lengthy telephone conversation with Michael about 6 months before his death. He expressed an intention to publish an updated version of The Gold Sovereign, incorporating research he had done since the publication of the Golden Jubilee edition, and also some material which, although known at the time of publication, he did not feel he had researched sufficiently for publication. He explained that he had not been in the best of health, and was hoping to be able to continue before too long. During the conversation, I formed an intention to try to find time to visit him to discuss sovereigns, and I offered him the use of one of our photographs for the next edition. Sadly none of this came to pass.

Hammered gold coins called 'sovereigns' had been minted on and off between 1489-1604, whereupon James I (VI) changed the name of the 20/- gold piece to a 'Unite'. The reform coinage sovereign of 1817 onwards was issued as a normal circulation type coin, and also as a proof. 


Designed by William Wyon, Chief Engraver, the obverse features the second (large) young head portrait facing left of the young Queen at just 18 years old. This larger bust fills more of the area of the coin and shows Victoria's hair held by a double fillet and gathered into a loosely knotted bun. The initials W.W. are set in the truncation. Depending on the variation, the engraver's intials are either raised or incuse.

The inscription reads


and the date (1854) appears below the portrait. 


The reverse of the 1854 sovereign was designed by engraver, Jean Baptiste Merlen. It features the shield design, which is mounted by a crown. It also has a branch of laurel leaves on either side. The branches are tied, with a ribbon in a bow, below the shield.

Beneath this, the reverse displays the thistle, rose and shamrock (symbolising the unity of Scotland, England and Ireland) with a small flower stop on each side.

The inscription reads


completing the monarch's legend, which begins on the obverse.


Weight / SizeFull
Gold Weight Troy Ounces0.235
Fineness / Carat0.917 / 22
Mintage Figure3,589,611
Spink Reference3852C/D
Obverse DesignerWilliam Wyon
Reverse DesignerJean Baptiste Merlen
Issuing Monarch Victoria (1837-1901)
Mint / BrandThe Royal Mint
CountryUnited Kingdom
Price List
gFinegFine£477.64Out Of Stock
gVFgVF£761.77Out Of Stock
gFineaVF£538.14Out Of Stock
Sold Prices
Date Obverse Reverse Price
23 November 2018 gFine gFine £368.50
17 December 2020 gFine aVF £541.39
27 September 2021 gFine aVF £517.16
Terms & Delivery

Terms of Sale - Key Points

You can find more information on payment and identification requirements.

Bullion coins are provided as is and on occasion may have some minor scratches or edge knocks. These are not regarded as faulty or damaged goods as their precious metal content and value as a bullion coin is not affected. Any coin sold for a value less than a 180% intrinsic is considered a bullion coin.

Gold investment products are VAT free. Silver investment products are inclusive of VAT at the current rate unless otherwise stated.

All investment products are based on the live precious metal price. Prices will be fixed once the item has been added to the basket and recalculates just before checking out. 

If your product is not a graded coin and is considered a bullion item it should be noted that these are bought and sold on low premiums over their precious metal content and not solely for aesthetic purposes, therefore some products may have edge knocks and/or marks. These edge knocks and marks do not alter the specifications of the coins.

Please note that all investment products are exempt from the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013 and therefore customers do not have the right to cancel their order once the order has been accepted. If customers no longer wish to go ahead with their investment purchase, there is an option to sell the products back to Chard (1964) Ltd instead. View our current buy back prices.

View our full Terms & Conditions.

Delivery Information

We aim to dispatch orders within 48 hours of receiving cleared funds. Our standard delivery methods are as follows

Orders over £60 - Fully Insured Delivery.

  • Within the UK and BFPO - Next day fully insured and tracked. Delivery starts from £6. 
  • International - Royal Mail International Signed / Royal Mail International Tracked / Royal Mail International Tracked and Signed For. Items sent via this method will normally arrive between 3-7 working days. Delivery starts from £15.

Orders under £60

  • Within the UK and BFPO - Royal Mail 2nd Class. Your order will normally arrive within 2-3 working days. Delivery starts from £3.50.
  • International - Royal Mail International Standard. Your order will normally arrive between 3-7 working days. Delivery starts from £6.

If you wish to have your order sent by an alternative method (e.g., Saturday Guaranteed) please contact +441253343081 for more information. Please note, we will not dispatch high value orders over a bank holiday weekend.

For international delivery, please check with your local customs office for more information on custom duty and taxes.

Full delivery information can be found by clicking here

Postal Insurance

We offer fully insured delivery on all special delivery options. We do need to pass on the cost of this insurance as it soon adds up shipping high value gold and silver products. 

  • Orders < £1500 there is no additional fee
  • Orders > £1500 we charge a fee in order to cover the increasing costs of insurance. For every £1500 we apply a £1 fee. 

If you require any assistance please do not hesitate to call the showroom on +441253343081 and one of our team can discuss your purchase. 

Related Blogs

If you would like to read more about the gold sovereign, perhaps Britains most iconic numismatic piece: 

The Coins of Queen Victoria - Young Head Portrait

The Sovereign - Britain's Favourite Gold Coin