By Kerry Rodgers
April 5-8 saw Sydney, Australia’s Noble Numismatics conduct their 40th anniversary sale. Among prices realized Australian gold was front and center.
The catalog was filled with several notable gold collections. Among these were the half sovereigns of Ray Kaleda – one of the finest accumulations ever formed. It was complemented by the consignment from a second Australian collector of a series of exceptional sovereigns from 1902 to 1931 assembled over 35 years. Many coins in both collections were in top condition, accounting for both buyer enthusiasm and outstanding prices.
Top price of $37,814 [A$50,085] went to an extremely rare 1926S [Sydney Mint] sovereign of George V (KM-29) graded MS-63 by the Professional Coin Grading Service. It was followed someway back by the $33,034 [A$43,753] paid for one of the finest known1921M [Melbourne Mint] sovereigns in aUNC and the $29,712 [A$39,353] fetched by a 1922S also in aUNC.
Queen Victoria put in an appearance among the higher prices in realizing $27,010 [A$35,775] for a rare 1855 half sovereign, KM-1. The coin came in gVF and is seldom seen in this condition or better. It is probably the fifth or sixth finest known and had been expected to fetch more.
A George V 1923S sovereign in gEF made $20,708 [A$27,428] while a second type Queen Victoria half of 1864 but with a Roman I in date (KM-3) took $18,006 [A$23,850] in UNC.
Two other gold pieces produced a sharp upturn in interest when they appeared on the block. Both were extremely rare British 19th century tokens struck in gold. A Berkshire I.B. Monk gold forty shillings [two pounds] of 1812 came described as, “About as struck with mirror surfaces, FDC with much original mint bloom and extremely rare, probably the finest known.” It had little difficulty in fetching $12,605 [A$16,695].
It was followed by a Younge Wilson & Younge gold ten shillings and sixpence [half guinea] from Yorkshire, also of 1812. It had been graded aEF. It was produced as an emergency piece during the Napoleonic wars when no 1812-dated regular issue half guineas were struck. Only a handful have survived suggesting the price realized of $5,402 [A$6,000/7,155] may have been something of a steal.
The silver on offer was well represented in the top prices. The highest price achieved by any coin in the sale was the $175,566 [A$232,538] paid for a 1813 holey dollar (New South Wales KM-2). The host coin is a Charles IIII 8 reales, 1799FM, and grades aVF. The countermark is sharply struck and grades EF. The catalog describes the coin as “very rare as such, one of the top 20 holey dollars known.”
And $21,608 [A$28,620] was paid for a great New Zealand rarity: a 1934 proof set consisting of halfcrown, florin, shilling, sixpence and threepence, KM-PS2. It is believed to be the only set in private hands. Toned, but otherwise FDC it sold above estimate.
Full catalog details and prices realized of these and other lots can be found at Noble’s website: www.noble.com.au/. A buyers’ premium of 19.25 percent has been added to the prices cited and these have been converted at 1AUD = 0.755USD.
This article was originally printed in World Coin News.
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