The Royal Mint was authorised to strike a maximum of 12,500 silver Proof Piedfort £1 coins for worldwide distribution.
Piedforts are coins which have been struck on thicker than normal blanks. As their name suggests, they have close associations with France, where from the twelfth century they were apparently issued by the King as presentation pieces.
Appropriately, in it's 10th anniversary year, this year's premier circulating coins recalls that of 1983, featuring on its reverse the same finely detailed depiction of the Royal Coat of Arms created by Eric Sewell. The first Royal Arms of England are attributed to Richard I, the Scottish lion and Irish harp being added by James VI of Scotland when he inherited the English throne. In their present form they remain essentially those of Queen Victoria and today represent Her Majesty the Queen's sovereignty over the whole of the United Kingdom.
The £1 coin is not an exact replica of its predecessor since the obverse features Raphael Maklouf's exquisite portrait of Her Majesty approved for use on United Kingdom coins from 1985.
The inscription inludes the Latin abbrevition for DEI GRATIA REGIA FIDEI DEFENSOR, "by the Grace of God, Queen, Defender of the Faith".
This £1 coin is struck in sterling (.925) silver Proof quality. Its weighs 19.00 grammes and measures 22.50 millimetres in diameter. The milled edge bears the inscription: DECUS ET TUTAMEN - "An ornament and a safeguard". Only 12,500 of these superb coins were made available for worldwide distribution.
The 1993 silver proof Piedfort one pound coin is encapsulated and housed in the original box, complete with certificate of authenticity.
An essential addition for the Silver collectors amongst you.