The Charles Darwin £2 coin was introduced in 2009 and features one of the most prominent biologists of the 19th century, but how much is one of the coins worth today?
According to past sold values on eBay, a Charles Darwin £2 coin is worth around £3.63 without postage and packaging. The value, interestingly, seems to have increased over the past couple of years.
The demand for Charles Darwin £2 coins remains high with several examples selling every week on eBay, so if you manage to find one of these coins you shouldn’t have any issues selling it. Now you know how much they’re worth on the secondary market, let’s dive into the specifications of the coin itself so you can learn more about it.
How many Charles Darwin £2 coins were made?
The Charles Darwin £2 coin was released into circulation in 2009, with 3,903,000 coins minted. A mintage of 3,903,000 is not very low for a £2 coin – for example, the rarest £2 coin has a mintage of just 485,000. Despite this relatively high mintage the coin still sells well above face value on eBay, which shows there is still a demand for this coin even though it is more common than a lot of other £2 coins.
There were other versions of the coin produced by the Royal Mint, which is summarised below:
- Brilliant Uncirculated – 169,713
- Silver Proof – 9,357
- Silver Proof Piedfort – 3,282
- Gold Proof – 1,000
In 2009 only one other £2 coin was minted – the Robert Burns £2. This £2 had a mintage of 3,253,000 and celebrates the life of Robert Burns, a famous poet from Scotland. You can read more about that coin in our article here.
The design of the Charles Darwin £2 coin
The reverse design of the Charles Darwin £2 coin was designed by Suzie Zamit and features an image of Charles facing a chimpanzee, in reference to Darwin’s contribution to the science of evolution. Towards the top of the design Darwin’s name can be found in capital letters, with his birth year to the left and the 200th anniversary of his birth – 2009 – to the right. Two pounds is inscribed at the bottom in capital letters to complete the design, with the iconic gold band around the circumference of the coin.
The edge of the coin is milled and inscribed with ‘ON THE ORIGIN OF SPECIES’, which is in reference to Darwin’s book that was published in 1859 detailing the theory of evolution. The obverse of the coin features Ian Rank-Broadley’s design as with all £2 coins of that era.
Other notable coins that celebrate scientific achievement include the 2003 Anniversary of the Discovery of DNA £2 and the Sir Isaac Newton 50p.
Why was it made and what does it commemorate?
The Charles Darwin £2 coin was made to commemorate 200 years since the birth of Charles Darwin in 1809. Charles Darwin was born in Shrewsbury in England and is one of the most well-known biologists in history. He is most well-known for his theory of evolution, which was first published in his 1859 book the Origin of Species.
This is also commemorated on the coin by the inscription around the edge, which features the title of the book in capital letters.
It was not until the 1930s that the theory of evolution was accepted throughout society following the emergence of modern evolutionary synthesis, which is why Darwin was years ahead of his time in terms of the contributions he made to science. When his book was initially released there were still lots of people who favoured competing theories such as theistic evolution or orthogenesis.
Although the theory of evolution is what Darwin is most well-known for, he also had notable research in lots of other areas including geology amongst several others. Darwin also published other books such as a journal of his five-year voyage on HMS Beagle which led him to become a well-known author. His last book was published in 1881 and covered earthworms and their effect on soil, which emphasises the wide variety of topics he had an impact on.
Where can you get the coin?
eBay is obviously the main place to go if you want to pick up a circulated version of the coin, with some listings offering uncirculated versions. It’s worth noting that you should always be careful when shopping around on eBay, be sure to take your time to find the right coin before you decide to purchase.
We usually recommend the Royal Mint for any other version, such as proof or piedfort, however, as the coin was released over 10 years ago it is not available any longer on their website. Other options include Bullion by Post or Chards, but the stock seems to be highly limited.
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