1918 Half Sovereign struck at the Perth Mint.

1918 Half Sovereign struck at the Perth Mint.
1918 Half Sovereign struck at the Perth Mint.
Sold June 30 2021
Choice Uncirculated , with lustrous obverse fields and a satin reverse
Private Collection Melbourne
The Perth Mint has struck many of Australia's greatest coin rarities including this fabulous 1918 Half Sovereign. The coin is offered in the premium grade of Choice Uncirculated and it is the addition of the word ‘CHOICE’ that makes this coin the absolute exception, a step up from Uncirculated and poles apart from those 1918 Half Sovereigns most frequently sighted. The coin has lustrous obverse fields and majestic satin reverse fields. The strike is strong, the design highly detailed. We remark on the strength in the rider’s leg …. an inherent area of weakness in most 1918 Half Sovereigns. We also remark that this is only the fourth Choice Uncirculated 1918 Half Sovereign we have sold. This is a great coin offered at a great price of $18,000.
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1918 Perth Mint Half Sovereign reverse. A strong strike and majestic, satin fields. Lovely edges.

The 1918 Perth Mint Half Sovereign is historically significant. Struck at the Perth Mint more than a century ago, it was Australia’s last half sovereign defining the end of the nation's golden era.

The coin is rare with respected numismatic author, Greg McDonald, suggesting that only 200 to 300 pieces are available to collectors.

The 1918 Perth Mint Half Sovereign is an enigma. It is the coin that according to Perth Mint records was never struck.

Now, that is a story we have heard before. The 1930 Penny is yet another Australian coin rarity that according to its mint of origin, the Melbourne Mint, was also never struck.

In both cases the mystery surrounding their striking has added to their appeal, underpinning collector demand.

The first appearance of a 1918 Perth Mint Half Sovereign occurred in 1967 and was noted in the then industry magazine, 'The Australian Coin Review'. Inspired by the coin's first sighting, collectors commenced searching. And over the ensuing years, a few more 1918 Perth Mint Half Sovereigns trickled their way out into the marketplace.

The extreme rarity of the 1918 Perth Mint Half Sovereign challenged historians and numismatists to come up with a plausible reason for the minuscule mintage. Extensive research was undertaken on die usage at the Perth Mint in 1918 and in the years thereafter.

The conclusion was that a mintage of half sovereigns was struck in 1919 and again in 1920 - using the dies dated 1918 - all of which was exported overseas with the majority assumed melted down.


1918 Perth Mint Half Sovereign obverse. Highly detailed with a lustrous obverse. Lovely edges.

The 1918 Perth Mint Half Sovereign is a stand-alone rarity. Its a key coin - the rarest date - in the George V Half Sovereign Series.

But it also is an important date in our entire Half Sovereign series (1855 to 1918) for Australia struck its last half sovereign in 1918.

The 1918 Half Sovereign was struck at the Perth Mint and features the obverse portrait of King George V.

The first Australian half sovereign to depict the portrait of George V was dated 1911. The last half sovereign to depict his portrait was dated 1918.

A complete collection of George V Half Sovereigns involves nine coins.

      1911 Sydney Mint Half Sovereign
      1911 Perth Mint Half Sovereign
      1912 Sydney Mint Half Sovereign
      1914 Sydney Mint Half Sovereign
      1915 Sydney Mint Half Sovereign
      1915 Melbourne Mint Half Sovereign
      1915 Perth Mint Half Sovereign
      1916 Sydney Mint Half Sovereign
      1918 Perth Mint Half Sovereign

It is a relatively easy collection to put together. Except for one coin. That being the very last coin in the series and the most elusive, the 1918 Perth Mint Half Sovereign. This coin.


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PO Box 1060 Hawksburn Victoria Australia 3142

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