Silver Britannias - Following the success of the Gold Britannia bullion coins introduced in 1987, the Royal Mint produced a one-ounce Silver Britannia coin in 1997, with the 1997 Silver Britannias being issued only as proofs with a mintage of 20,000. Silver Britannia coins have a face value of two pounds (£2). The silver bullion coins produced from 1998-2012 are .958 fine silver, as opposed to the standard British sterling of .925 fine silver with the 2013 bullion issue being .999 fine.
The Silver Britannia’s attractive design was created to appeal to both collectors and investors alike. The obverse of the 1997 issue of the silver coin features the “Third Portrait” used on British decimal bullion coins dated from 1985 to 1997. In 1998, the obverse design of the Silver Britannia coin, along with the obverse designs on all other British coins, changed to depict the “Fourth Portrait,” a more mature likeness of Queen Elizabeth II. The reverse of the Silver Britannia coin illustrates the Standing Britannia, which appears in a horse-drawn chariot and resembles the Roman figure Boudica. The Standing Britannia image was originally engraved by G.W. De Saulles and used on the florins of Edward VII from 1902 to 1910, and on the Gold Britannia coins for most of the issues following 1987.
The standard obverse of Queen Elizabeth II and the reverse of the Standing Britannia decorate all of the Silver Britannia bullion coins of 1998, 2000, 2002, 2004, and 2006. However, special designs and variations have appeared on the 1997, 1999, 2001, 2003, 2005, and 2007 issues of the Silver Britannia coins. The first of the special single-year designs commemorates the 10th anniversary of the Gold Britannia coins in 1997, the same year of the Silver Britannia coin's introduction. Since then, the Royal Mint seems to have settled on a pattern of alternating the classic Standing Britannia image and a special design on the reverse of the silver bullion coins. For example, the reverse of the 1997 and 1999 issues of the Silver Britannia coin depicts the same Standing Britannia design, but with one issue being a proof version of the silver coin and another issue being only an uncirculated version of the British silver bullion coin.
Silver prices fluctuate, but the popularity of the Silver Britannia bullion coins only increases. APMEX sells Silver Britannia coins in “GEM” Uncirculated and Proof condition. We also offer certified Silver Britannias in both current and backdated issues. APMEX makes it easy to buy silver by offering competitive silver prices on all silver bullion coins.
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Last Updated: 5/22/2015 5:15:02 PM ET
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