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Obverse of 1999 Silver Proof Millennium Crown
Obverse of 1999 Silver Proof Millennium Crown

Reverse of 1999 Silver Proof Millennium Crown
Reverse of 1999 Silver Proof Millennium Crown

1999 Silver Proof Millennium Crown in Presentation Box
1999 Silver Proof Millennium Crown in Presentation Box

1999 Millennium £5 Crown

The Greenwich Meridian
Greenwich Mean Time is recognised throughout the world as an international time zone system with every day beginning and ending from twelve midnight at Greenwich. Despite its universality, GMT is in fact of fairly recent adoption, influenced by the arrival of the railways. The development of railway networks enabled people to travel faster than the speed of the sun. With each town adhering to local time the organisation of a timetable proved impossible and a uniform system of keeping time became essential.
By the mid-nineteenth century the majority of clocks on church towers and town halls were set to GMT and towards the end of the century it was given formal authority as British standard time.
Greenwich was also chosen for a worldwide time zone system by the International Meridian Conference, 1884.

The 1999 Millennium Crown
With a denomination (face value) of five pounds, the Millennium Crown has been produced by the Royal Mint as a lasting souvenir of the occasion.

The obverse (head), which is dated 1999, bears the fourth major different portrait of the Queen, designed by Ian Rank-Broadley, and introduced in 1998.

Designed by Jeffery Matthews and modelled by Royal Mint engraver Robert Evans, the reverse of the coin perfectly captures the passage of time from this century into the new millennium.
The focal point of the design bears a representation of the British Isles with a pair of clock hands, pivoted on Greenwich and set at the crucial twelve o'clock position, with the important millennium dates of 1999 and 2000 incorporated either side.
In addition, the traditional beading around the outer edge has been transformed into the minutes and hours of a clock face, further enhancing the essential theme of the design. This is continued by the incuse edge inscription:-
taken from Shakespeare's The Tempest and recognising the dawn of the new millennium as an opportunity to look into the future.

The First Millennium
For Britain the start of the first millennium is marked by the presence of the Romans, who brought with them a hitherto unknown level of civilisation, including an efficient communications system, incredible construction skills and even central heating.
Following their departure, a long and ultimately futile struggle against the invasions and settlement of people from the Continent of Europe saw Britain again become a patchwork of numerous kingships, each loath to relinquish their sovereignty.
Not until the military success of Alfred the Great, did England start to find an enduring unity, but at the end of the first millennium AD a major role on the world scene was still some way distant.

The Second Millennium
During the second millennium the pace of change quickened dramatically. If the Domesday Book revealed a small and rural economy, the centuries that followed transformed the country into a highly advanced industrial nation. Not only did British scientists and engineers lead the way in discovery and innovation but the nation that produced Newton also showed itself capable of giving birth to great writers, poets, artists, and composers. The name of Shakespeare, for instance, is known throughout the world and it is appropriate that one of his plays should have provided the edge inscription for the new millennium crown.

Silver Proof38.6128.280.925 Silver0.8410
Gold Proof38.6139.940.917 Gold1.1775

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Uncirculated Specimen in Folder

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Silver Proof

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Gold Proof
For the gold proof version, please see our Tax Free Gold website.

First Millennium Coin!
Exclusive - We also have available Replica Silver Penny of Ethelred the Unready
Ethelred II was King of England from 978 to 1016, so we can offer you a replica silver penny from the time of the first millennium. These are produced for us in such close reproduction of the original that our mint has added its own mint-mark to distinguish it from the original.
Price £3.95

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