1/4 oz British Queen's Beasts Dragon Gold Coin (2017)
(Excluding International Orders)
The 1/4 oz Red Dragon of Wales gold coin is the 3rd release in the 10-coin Queen’s Beasts series from The Royal Mint.
These are sovereign coins backed by the British government and contain 1/4 troy oz of .9999 fine gold.
The back of the coin, features the ferocious Red Dragon of Wales clutching a shield in its claw along with the weight, purity and year-date. The Dragon is the heraldic badge of the House of Tudor, the famous monarchs of Welsh ancestry who ruled over 400 years ago.
An effigy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II adorns the front of the coin along with the face value of 25 pounds.
The Queen’s Beasts are inspired by centuries of history and royal heraldry. The ten coins depict the genealogy of Queen Elizabeth II, with each of the heraldic beasts symbolizing the various strands of The Queen’s royal ancestry.
The original beasts were a series of 6-foot tall statues that stood guard outside The Queen’s coronation ceremony in Westminster Abbey on June 2, 1953.
Today, they are re-imagined as beautiful, bullion coins.
Each proud beast was used as a heraldic badge by generations that came before Queen Elizabeth II. Centuries ago, these badges adorned the flags and shields of armies as they charged into battle -- not only to identify each side but also to serve as a symbol of royal lineage and title.
Dragons are one of the best known mythical beasts, found in legends all over the world. In Europe, the dragon was seen as a frightening but strong, wise and powerful creature.
In Wales, it was mentioned in chronicles as early as the sixth century, sometimes known as the red dragon of Cadwallader, the legendary king of Gwynedd.
The Red Dragon of The Queen’s Beasts was an emblem of Owen Tudor, a claim to Welsh heritage that was carried on by his son, who would become Henry VII.
The troops of Henry VII carried a fiery red dragon standard at the Battle of Bosworth, when Henry secured the crown of England.
Henry VIII used a red dragon on green and white – the colors of the House of Tudor – on his ships.
It was an official emblem of Wales for many years but it was not until 1959 that Queen Elizabeth II made the red dragon on a green and white background the official flag for Wales.
The dragon badge of The Queen’s Beasts is red with a yellow underbelly and it holds a quartered red and gold shield with leopards, the arms of Llewelyn ap Griffith, the last native prince of Wales.
Ancient Red Dragon of Wales heraldic badge used the House of Tudor.