The British Royal Mint Selects Stack’s Bowers Galleries to Sell

The Historic Trial of the Pyx Coins

Graeme Smith, Assay Master for Queen Elizabeth II — Graeme Smith began his role as the Queen’s Assay Master in 2013 and retired after a successful and prolific tenure in March 2023. At the most recent Trial of the Pyx in February 2023, Smith remarked that “It is an honor to be a part of one of the UK’s oldest judicial ceremonies, testing the quality and authenticity of the nation’s coinage. No other Mint across the world puts its coinage through such rigorous testing that ensures the highest standards are met and maintained in the minting of coinage.”

Paul Morgan, Assay Master for King Charles III — Paul Morgan assumed the role of King’s Assay Master in April 2023 following a long term career at The Royal Mint performing other duties. In discussing his new role, Paul Morgan remarked that “It is an honour to be appointed to the role of King’s Assay Master which ensures the integrity of The Royal Mint’s products and is as important today as it was in the time of Sir Isaac Newton.”

Anne Jessopp, CEO of The Royal Mint — Since joining The Royal Mint in 2008, Anne Jessopp has held several positions on the Board, including HR Director and Director of Consumer, before stepping into the role of CEO in 2018—the first female in the 1,100 year history of The Royal Mint to do so.

Spearheading the transformation of one of the UK’s oldest businesses, Anne’s leadership of The Royal Mint has seen her introduce an ambitious strategy to continue to grow the consumer facing divisions, helping to safeguard the business and employment for the future.  As a result, The Royal Mint is now firmly delivering its strategy of reinvention, while retaining its unique heritage as The Original Maker of beautiful and authentic products and services. Also under Anne’s leadership, The Royal Mint has committed to becoming a leader in sustainable precious metals.

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

Queen of the United Kingdom from February 6, 1952 to September 8, 2022
The longest reign of any British monarch and any female head of state in history

The reign of Queen Elizabeth II, the longest-serving monarch in British history, was marked by profound historical events, cultural shifts, and remarkable achievements. Born on April 21, 1926, Queen Elizabeth II ascended to the throne on February 6, 1952, following the death of her father, King George VI.

Throughout her reign, Queen Elizabeth II embodied grace, dedication, and unwavering commitment to her role as the head of state. She navigated the challenges and triumphs of a changing world, witnessing significant transformations in technology, society, and geopolitics. Under Queen Elizabeth II’s leadership, the monarchy adapted to the modern era while preserving its historical traditions and constitutional role. Her reign witnessed the expansion of the British Commonwealth and the transition from empire to a more diverse and inclusive society. Her calm and compassionate response to national crises, such as the death of Princess Diana in 1997 and the COVID-19 pandemic, earned her widespread respect and admiration.

The Queen’s commitment to public service was exemplified through her patronage of numerous charitable organizations and her active engagement in various philanthropic endeavors. She was a steadfast advocate for causes ranging from education and healthcare to the conservation of the environment. As the Queen advanced in age, the focus shifted toward securing the future of the monarchy and preparing the next generation of royals to take on leadership roles.

In 2022, Her Majesty The Queen made history by becoming the first British monarch to celebrate a Platinum Jubilee. In the seven decades since 1952, the world had seen her grow from a young queen crowned in post-war Britain, into a widely respected Head of State and a loving great-grandmother. To celebrate this Platinum Jubilee, The Royal Mint issued a range of exciting special coins featuring bespoke commemorative designs. This auction offers examples of virtually every one of these special commemoratives, made all the more desirable by having gone through the 2023 Trial of the Pyx. For collectors, these unique Platinum Jubilee test pieces represent the ultimate mementos recognizing the Queen’s unprecedented achievement.  

Spanning more than seven decades, Queen Elizabeth II’s reign has left an indelible mark on the United Kingdom and the world. Her reign represents a period of immense change, continuity, and steadfast dedication to duty. Queen Elizabeth II’s legacy as a respected and beloved monarch will continue to shape the monarchy and inspire generations to come.

His Majesty King Charles III

King of the United Kingdom from September 8, 2022 to Present

King Charles III was born on November 14, 1948, in London, England. He is the eldest son of the late Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. In his youth, King Charles III attended various schools in the United Kingdom and later went on to study at Gordonstoun School in Scotland. He then pursued further education at the University of Cambridge and the University of Wales, where he studied archaeology and anthropology.

King Charles III has been involved in numerous charitable endeavors and has advocated for various causes. He established The Prince’s Trust in 1976, which is an organization dedicated to supporting young people in education, training, and employment. Additionally, he has been an active supporter of environmental conservation and sustainable development, founding The Prince’s Rainforests Project in 2007. Even prior to his ascension on September 8, 2022, King Charles III had taken on various official duties and roles on behalf of the British monarchy.

Having been heir apparent since the age of three, King Charles III is now the oldest monarch ever crowned in British history and brings to his sovereignty a lifetime of experience and wisdom to guide Britain into the future.

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