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1887-M Narrow JEB Half Sovereign

Jubilee Head


The 1887 half sovereigns come in a number of varieties distinguishable by the place of manufacture which can be Sydney, Melbourne or London and by the positioning of the obverse designer's initials, JEB. The mint can be determined by a mintmark, or absence of underneath the shield on the reverse. An S indicates this issue, the Sydney mint, an M indicates Melbourne while the London mint issues do not display a mintmark.

S mintmark for Sydney (this issue)

M mintmark for Melbourne

No mintmark on London mint issues

The three varieties of designer's initials are wide, medium and narrow, also known as Small Spread, Normal and Close respectively. The Wide spaced variety features short or crushed characters while the Medium and Narrow feature full sized characters with varying spacing between them.

Wide or Short Spread Spacing

Medium or Normal Spacing

Narrow or Close JEB

The narrow JEB is the most common of the three 1887-M varieties, particularly if sought in better grades with most of the very high grade examples of this date being the Narrow variety. In lower grades it appears to have scarcity on par with the Wide JEB variety; This disparity in survival condition between the two varieties would seem to indicate that the Narrow JEB variety was more likely to be hoarded possibly indicating it formed the first batch of this variety with the public hoarding it as a keepsake for Queen Victoria's Jubilee, this would seem to complement the high survival rate of the date.

a facility that produces coinsA coin struck from specially prepared dies to strike a superior quality coin not intended for circulationThe heads side of the coinThe tails side of the coinThe inscription around the inner edge of the coinA marking, usually a letter or dot that signifies which mint struck a particular coinThe number of coins struck of a particular designationA coin struck as a representation piece of a coin that never eventuated(Monetarium (Australia) Pty Ltd, 2009)(Monetarium (Australia) Pty Ltd, 2009)(Monetarium (Australia) Pty Ltd, 2009)(Monetarium (Australia) Pty Ltd, 2009)(Marsh, M, A, 2004)(Downies, 2005)

Values are in AUD and are retail price estimations based on past sales of coins certified by PCGS or NGC and as such values only related to such graded coins. Uncertified coins or coins graded by other services would likely be worth significantly less. For wholesale pricing please refer to the Red Sheet. While all attempts to ensure accurate pricing, data entry errors can occur and as such no warranty is expressed or implied as to the accuracy of any information published on this website. It is important to verify all published sales to ensure the accuracy of the pricing when making any purchase decision. Any personal information provided to us is protected by the Privacy Act 1988.