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High-grade Elizabeth I Ship Ryal

The end of October saw the release of our Winter Fixed Price List which has quite possibly been our best catalogue yet, in terms of variety and high-quality material. Most notably it features a superb 12 Ceasars set and the impressive Broadstairs Collection. As is typical in the current market, we could have sold some of the higher quality pieces four or five times over, such as the Slaney Collection James I Unite (#146), the 1648 Pontefract Shilling from the Farquar Collection (#174) and many others. This is particularly promising and should eliminate any doubts about a slow-down in the market – as always quality seems to be the most desirable factor, with new records being set regularly.

Saturday 2nd November saw the final London Coin Fair of the year and what should have been a quiet show due to the rugby final (the less said about this the better) turned out to be a worthwhile and busy show. Our next fair will be the New York International Numismatic Convention, held at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, from the 16th to the 19th January.

One particular highlight from our latest catalogue is a high-grade Elizabeth I Ship Ryal, a highly sought after and appealing coin (#140). The Ryal has an anachronistic, mediaeval appearance about it – showing the queen in the style and pose of her Plantagenet forebears. Yet 250 years after the Battle of Sluys, the naval theme is strangely appropriate to the decade which saw the momentous events of the Spanish Armada. One of England’s most iconic gold coins and the single greatest numismatic rarity of the celebrated Elizabethan era. Only a few specimens were made, they are generally encountered in low grade, and this is certainly up there with the finest of the surviving pieces.

Interestingly high-grade ship ryals have increased in value greatly over the years; the following graph shows three similar high-grade examples selling over a 10 year period – 2005, 2010 and 2015. This seemingly makes our example exceptional value for money, at a figure quite below the 100K mark.


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