Henry VI, Lancastrian King Second Reign of Oct. 1470-Apr. 1471

London, Cross pattée mintmark (on reverse). Rare. This denomination, depicting St Michael slaying the evil dragon, and valued at 80 silver shillings at issue, made its first appearance during the previous reign. The restoration of King Henry was to be very short lived, and his only gold coins during this Second Reign were angels. This coin was made shortly before the final fall of the warring Houses of York and Lancaster: Henry was under extreme stress and finally died imprisoned in the Tower of London, in May 1471. Richard II’s son Edward again took the throne but died shortly after, leaving the throne to his brother, who reigned as Richard III. Relatively few coins bearing these names appeared before the royal lives ended, but the golden Angel would live on as a denomination even if these early pieces were melted as a source of their metal.

A beautiful and superb example of this rarity, struck on a full broad flan without cracks or edge chips, and having excellent detail in the central images and legends, only a few letters being softly struck. Surfaces are extraordinarily choice, and the coin is blessed by deep reddish gold toning.