George V Proof Pattern Penny 1933 PR65 Brown PCGS, Royal mint, Freeman-786, Peck-2284 (PCGS has incorrectly attributed this coin as Peck-2279, which is the standard 1933 Penny). A wholly engaging specimen of this excessively rare pattern, beautifully struck with remarkably preserved surfaces retaining much mint red on the obverse and a more even chocolate tone on the reverse. In comparison to the standard issue of the same year, also extremely rare but with seven known examples versus a minuscule population of four for this pattern type, what is most striking about this pattern issue is the great level of detail engraved into the hair and beard of King George. Other minor differences are noted, but of importance are the initials of the artist that engraved the Pattern, André Lavrillier (denoted ΔL), on the obverse alongside the initials of Sir Bertram Mackennal whose initials appear on all Pennies of George V and on the reverse in the rocks to the left of Britannia's shield.
The previous sale of this coin by Baldwin's included an excellent and highly detailed description of the purpose of this pattern written in collaboration with Mr G P Dyer of the Royal Mint Museum. Not wishing to reproduce their work in its entirety, we will paraphrase here: This Pattern was produced in an effort to reduce the ghosting of George's bust outline into the reverse. Lavrillier had previously demonstrated expertise in balancing metal flow between dies in a pair of denominations produced for Romania at the Royal mint. Four examples of the present pattern were produced for consideration by the Standing Committee on Coins, Medals, and Decorations, who ultimately denied it based on a number of minor points, most important of which was they did not believe the Lavrillier pattern solved the ghosting problem sufficiently.
Following is a list of the pedigrees of the four known examples of this type:
1) Royal Mint Museum
2) Fred Baldwin Collection Example – sold privately to Mrs E.M. Norweb, May 1958
Ex. Norweb Collection of English Coins, Part 3 (Spink Auction 56, November 1986, Lot 1149), sold for £4510 (including premium)
Ex. Colin Adams Collection (Spink Auction, July 2003, Lot 355), sold for £9775 (including premium)
Ex. Heritage (Auction 3004, January 2009, Lot 21452), graded PR65 Brown NGC, sold for $29900 (including premium)
3) Ex. Gregory Collection, Part 1 (Baldwin's Auction 44, May 2006, Lot 461), sold for £18975 (including premium)
Ex. Baldwin's (Auction 99, May 2016, Lot 1070), sold for £60000 (excluding premium), this coin
4) Ex. The Alderley Collection (Colin Cooke Online Auction 2007, Lot 200), sold for £18000
We had the privilege of selling the regular issue of this date in our August auction last year for an astounding $193,875. This pattern issue, similar to the regular issue with only three copies available to collectors, is actually rarer in absolute sense, as seven examples of the circulation-strike have been accounted for. As such, this is a singular opportunity for the seasoned collector of British Patterns that is not soon to be repeated. We wish all interested bidders the best of luck in their pursuit of this exceptional rarity!
Estimate: 75000-125000 USD