British Gold Queen’s Beast Coins from JM Bullion
One of the most stirring coin programs offered by the Royal Mint of England is the Queen’s Beast Collection. The sovereign coinage of England and the Britannia collection are brilliant in their own right as investment-grade bullion coins, but only the Queen’s Beast Series offers three different metallic options with a variety of weights in both bullion and proof options.
The Queen’s Beast Series of coins digs deep into the heraldic background of the Royal Arms of England, representing kings and queens who have ruled as royal monarchs over the Kingdom of England dating back hundreds of years. Each one of them left a lasting impression on the heraldry of England that remains in the history of the Royal Arms carried today by Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II. Among the coins in this collection, you’ll find two gold coins for sale in the Gold Queen’s Beast collection. With a total of 10 designs, you simply cannot miss out on this impressive series!
Mintage of the Gold Queen’s Beast Coins
When the Queen’s Beast Series of bullion and proof coins debuted in 2016, it was the prominent Lion of England leading the charge in the 10-coin collection. Scheduled to run through 2021, the Queen’s Beast Range originally featured a 2 oz silver coin alongside a ¼ oz and 1 oz gold coin for investors. To date in the collection, these two weights stand as the only options in the Gold Queen’s Beast Coin range. The other metallic options have been expanded or introduced as of 2017 to include a 1 oz platinum coin and a 10 oz silver coin.
Like many other bullion coin programs at the Royal Mint, there is no expressed mintage cap on the Queen’s Beast Series. The bullion coins are issued by the mint to either meet investor demand or until the mint can no longer match that demand, whichever event comes first. One thing is certain, though mintage figures are not released for the Queen’s Beast Series, the expansion of offerings with each new design release shows how popular the program is with investors.
Designs of the Gold Queen’s Beast Coins
All coins in the Queen’s Beast Series, from silver and gold to platinum, share the same obverse and reverse design elements. The Royal Mint plans to release 10 heraldic beasts in the series, but these are not randomly chosen from the rich history of Kings and Queens of England. Rather, each of the 10 heraldic beasts to feature in the collection come from the coronation ceremony for Queen Elizabeth II held at Westminster Abbey in 1953.
As a young Queen Elizabeth II entered the Abbey to take the crown of England, the door was guarded by 10 of the most significant beasts in British heraldic history. Each of these carved statues had been created by James Woodford RA, and the modern designs found on the Gold Queen’s Beast Coins and other options in the collection come from Royal Mint Engraver Jody Clark.
On the obverse of all coins in the Queen’s Beast Series is the right-profile portrait of Queen Elizabeth II. This is no ordinary design though. This fifth-generation design of Queen Elizabeth II captures her at age 89 and was designed in 2015 by Jody Clark to mark the year in which Elizabeth II surpassed her great-grandmother Victoria I as the longest-reigning monarch in British history. Jody Clark created this right-profile effigy, and in doing so became the youngest engraver in Royal Mint history to design the Queen’s portrait for British coinage.
The reverse of the Gold Queen’s Beast Coins vary from one release to the other, but each one reflects one of those 10 beasts guarding the start of Elizabeth II’s reign as she entered Westminster Abbey back in 1953. All 10 designs are listed below in the order of availability through 2018 along with the remaining designs to feature:
- 2016 Gold Lion of England: The Lion of England is the most important heraldic beast in the history of the Royal Arms. The lion was one of the first heraldic animals to appear in royal emblems. The Lion of England was presented to Geoffrey Plantagenet in 1127 when he married the daughter of King Henry I of England. When the Plantagenets ascended to the throne in 1154 with Henry II, the Lion of England came with him. King Richard I of England, the second Plantagenet king, established the Three Lions of England as the official coat of arms of England and Royal Arms of the monarch.
- 2017 Gold Griffin of Edward II: Long featured in the personal seal of Edward III, when he ascended the throne as King Edward III of England, the Griffin came with him. The Griffin of Edward III represents power and wisdom. The Griffin is equal parts lion and eagle, making it the most powerful beast in the world.
- 2017 Gold Red Dragon of Wales: Tracing its roots back to the 6th century in what is now Wales, the Red Dragon of Wales come to the Royal Arms through Owen Tudor, whose grandson would go on to become King Henry VII, founder of the House of Tudor. Queen Elizabeth II responsible for establishing the Red Dragon on the national flag of Wales in 1959.
- 2018 Gold Unicorn of Scotland: Unicorns are mythical beasts that have long been associated with mysticism and beauty. The animal featured in the early Royal Arms of Scotland when it was a separate kingdom. When King James VI of Scotland became King James I of England, he unified the crowns of the two kingdoms in his personal being and brought the Unicorn of Scotland to the Royal Arms of the kingdom. It remains there today, supporting the shield of the Royal Arms of the United Kingdom alongside the Lion of England.
- 2018 Gold Black Bull of Clarence: The black bull is the first of two heraldic beasts to come from the House of York. Together with the White Lion of Mortimer, the Black Bull of Clarence came to the Royal Arms through King Edward IV. He was the first and longest-reigning monarch in the history of the House of York. The Black Bull was originally carried by Edward IV’s great-grandfather, Roger Mortimer.
- 2019 Gold Falcon of the Plantagenets: The second of two heraldic beasts with an association directly to King Edward III, the Falcon of the Plantagenets was used by a wide range of monarchs from the House of Plantagenet and its later cadet houses, the House of Lancaster and House of York. The falcon was featured in the personal badge of King Edward III as a nod to his love of falconry.
- 2019 Gold Yale of Beaufort: The first heraldic beast coming from the House of Tudor, the Yale of Beaufort came to the Royal Arms of England through King Henry VII. Henry VII was the founder of the House of Tudor. His victory at Bosworth Field ended the Wars of the Roses and his marriage to Elizabeth of York connected the houses of Lancaster and York, ending the feud to some degree. The Yale is a mythical beast with the snout and tusks of a boar, as well as the body and horns of a goat.
- 2020 Gold White Lion of Mortimer: The other heraldic beast in the Queen’s Beast Series connected directly to King Edward IV, the White Lion was often used by Edward IV during his reign in place of the Lion of England in the Royal Arms. However, the White Lion is featured here without a crown, just as it was in the Royal Arms of Edward IV. The White Lion came to Edward IV through his grandmother, Anne de Mortimer who was the daughter of Roger Mortimer.
- 2020 Gold White Horse of Hanover: One of the most recent additions to the Royal Arms of England, the White Horse of Hanover came to the crown in 1714 with the ascension to the throne of Elector George of Hanover. The first monarch of the House of Hanover, King George I incorporated the White Horse into the quartered shield of the Royal Arms of the United Kingdom. It would remain in the Royal Arms through the reign of King George II, King George III, and King George IV. It was later removed because the restrictions on its use prevented female heirs to carry the White Horse of Hanover. Thus preventing Queen Victoria from carrying the White Horse.
- 2021 Gold White Greyhound of Richmond: The White Greyhound of Richmond is associated with the House of Tudor, but had been in the personal badges and seals of monarchs dating to the offspring of King Edward III. It was his son, John of Gaunt that carried the White Greyhound as the Earl of Richmond. It was later passed down through the Earl of Richmond to the Tudor monarch, King Henry VII.
Currently Available Gold Queen’s Beast Coins
As mentioned above, the Queen’s Beast Series from the Royal Mint features 1/4 oz and 1 oz gold coins in the Brilliant Uncirculated range, but these are not the only available coins. The Proof Queen’s Beast Gold Series offers 1/4 oz, 1 oz, and 5 oz gold coins to collectors with each of the 10 designs in the series. In addition, you can readily find the BU versions of the designs available in certified issues.
The bullion coins are available inside their original protective plastic from the Royal Mint, while the certified coins have the protective plastic slab of either the NGC or the PCGS.
Call Us with Questions
If you have any questions about the Queen’s Beast Gold Series, JM Bullion customer service is available to assist you. Our customer service team can field your questions on the phone at 800-276-6508, online using our live chat, and in writing via our email address. Please don’t hesitate to visit our Payment Methods FAQ if you have questions about how to pay for your gold bullion.