To commemorate the 400th Anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death the Royal Mint produced 3 different Shakespeare £2 coin designs into circulation in 2016. These designs included the Comedies, Histories and Tragedies designs and were each produced in varying amounts.
As a set these coins can attract above face value prices on the secondary market, and make for interesting coins to look out for in your change. Read below to find out how much each design is worth individually and the inspiration behind the designs.
Shakespeare Comedies £2
The Shakespeare Comedies £2 coin features a design of a jester’s hat and cane by John Bergdahl inspired by Shakespeare’s most famous comedy – A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Around the milled edge the inscription ‘ALL THE WORLDS A STAGE’ is to be found.
The mintage of the coin is 4,355,000, making it the least minted out of the three Shakespeare £2 coin designs. The average sale price for this coin is £4.28 on eBay, indicating that it can regularly sell for more than twice its face value.
Shakespeare Histories £2
The Shakespeare Histories £2 coin features yet again a design by John Bergdahl of a Crown and Sword, this time inspired by the play Macbeth, one of Shakespeare’s most famous history plays. The edge is milled and features the inscription ‘THE HOLLOW CROWN’, a famous quote from Shakespeare.
This coin has a mintage of 5,655,000 making it the most minted Shakespeare design out of the series. According to eBay the average sale price of this coin is £3.50, meaning that despite its higher mintage it is still able to regularly sell for above face value.
Shakespeare Tragedies £2
The Shakespeare Tragedies £2 coin as with the other two coins in this series features a design by John Bergdahl of a skull and rose. The design purposefully meant to represent a sense of doomed romance. Around the milled edge the inscription ‘WHAT A PIECE OF WORK IS A MAN’, a phrase from the monologue in Shakespeare’s play Hamlet.
This coin has a mintage of 4,615,000 and hence sits in the middle in terms of mintage amount of the three coins. According to eBay the it can sell for an average value of £2.50, slightly above face value.
What about the value of the coins as a set?
You may be wondering how much exactly these coins are worth as a complete set, as this represents a greater collectability value to a potential buyer.
We’ve had a look at eBay and the average value of the Shakespeare £2 coins -including the comedies, histories and tragedies coins- comes in at £9.38.
So, what exactly does this mean? Well, you might be better off selling the coins separately as it appears the individual values of the coins outweigh selling them as a bundle. However, for buyers you can get better value if you buy the coins as a bundle, but only by a small margin. Remember that the cost of postage and packaging can quickly overcome any savings you could make due to the small margins involved.
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All mintage figures can be found on the Royal Mint’s Website.