1849 Gold Sovereign Victoria Young Head Shield London aVF VF

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1849 Gold Sovereign Victoria Young Head Shield London aVF VF

The series 2, 1849 Victoria young (large) head shield reverse sovereigns are struck in 22 carat gold. Intended for use as circulation coins, these British coins were minted in London.


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All 1849 sovereigns were minted in London. There are two variations of the 1849 sovereign, the usual type and an error where the 1 of the date has been replaced with a Roman I.

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 relief in the rear of the truncation, the date is under the bust.

The reverse of the 1849 sovereign was designed by engraver, Jean Baptiste Merlen. It features the shield design which is mounted by a crown, this has a wreath of laurel leaves on either side. The wreathes are tied with ribbons in a bow below the shield. Under the bow is the rose, shamrock and thistle which symbolises the unity with England, Ireland and Scotland, there are flower stops on either side of this arrangement.