NGC-certified ‘Una and the Lion’ 15-piece Set Realizes $468,000 at Spink Auction

Posted on 1/21/2021

An NGC-graded English gold coin from two centuries earlier also realized over $100,000.

Vintage gold coins struck for English royalty that are now certified by Numismatic Guaranty Corporation® (NGC®) topped a recent Spink Auction. A 15-coin proof set that includes an “Una and a Lion” was the centerpiece of the sale, held January 17, 2021.

The top lot was the NGC-certified Great Britain 1839 Victoria Proof Set, which realized $468,000 USD. It contains coins from the Farthing all the way up to the 5 Sovereign, whose “Una and the Lion” design makes its one of the greatest coins in all of numismatics. The coin shows a bust of the young Queen Victoria on the obverse. The reverse shows Victoria guiding a lion, a scene inspired by Edmund Spenser’s epic poem “The Faerie Queen.”

Great Britain 1839 "Una and the Lion" Five Sovereign graded NGC PF 62+ Ultra Cameo Realized: $468,000
Click images to enlarge

While the Una and the Lion was struck to celebrate the beginning of Victoria’s reign, a coin from two centuries earlier was forged for a king under fire. Charles I struck coins known as the Triple Unite at the mint in Oxford, where he had fled during the English Civil War. The sale featured an example of the England 1643 Triple Unite, graded NGC MS 61, that realized $156,000 USD.

England 1643 Triple Unite graded NGC MS 61 Realized: $156,000
Click images to enlarge

Other NGC-certified highlights from the sale and a second Spink sale held the same day with additional English gold rarities included:

Prices realized include buyer’s premium.

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