England. King Charles II. 1668 VICESIMO Elephant Five Guineas. 41.71g. A considerably above average example of the historic first year of issue. NGC graded UNC details. Spink 3329. 

The first year of issue for the English 5 Guineas was in 1668, during the reign of Charles II. This coin is among the earliest British milled coinage examples, with the technique initially introduced during Elizabeth I's reign in 1561, though it was not widely adopted at the time. Its equivalent buying power today is somewhere around £1,000 and £1,500. 

Much of the gold bullion used to produce these coins were sold to the Royal Mint by the Company of Royal Adventurers Trading to Africa from Guinea, West Africa. The company's emblem, an elephant, was placed beneath the king's image to signify this. 




Sold by Private Treaty through Aventine Numismatics. A distinguished Collection', purchased en bloc via Spink, August 2018. R Richardson, Summer FPL, 2011, no. 62 - "edge weak, otherwise retaining much original brilliance, extremely fine" - £14,500. R Richardson, 'New Year' FPL, 2010, no. 46 - "a lovely piece retaining much of its original mint bloom, good extremely fine" - £19,500. R Richardson, Summer FPL, 2009, no. 55 - "edge a little weak or rubbed, but a lovely piece retaining much of its original lustre, good extremely fine" - £17,750. DNW 81, 30 April 2009, lot 158 - "minor surface marks and edge lettering smoothed, otherwise about extremely fine with a superb portrait and attractive tone" - £10,000. DNW 70, 20 June 2006, lot 409 - minor surface marks, edge lettering smoothed (ex ring mount?), otherwise nearly extremely fine with a superb portrait and attractive tone - £4,800. DNW 58, 24-25 June 2003, lot 10 - 'from a ring mount' [?] - £4,200. SNC, October 1986, no. 6853* - extremely fine and an attractive example, scarce - £4,750


By Joshua Lee


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