Table of Contents
- The History of Coins With Angels on Both Sides
- What Is the Meaning of a Coin With Angels on Both Sides?
- Grading Coins With Angels on Both Sides
- How Much Is A Guardian Angel Coin Worth?
- Can You Find Angel Coins In Uncirculated Condition
- How To Get Value For Money With A Coin With Angels on Both Sides
Have you come across a coin with angels on both sides?
Are you curious how much these coins are worth?
As a collector, every coin you encounter elicits the question: how much is it worth?
So, it is completely natural to want to discover the value of a coin as peculiar as one with angels on both sides.
This guide will explain everything you need to know about angel coins. You will learn more about their history, features, and how much they are worth.
So, let’s jump in and find out: Is a coin with angels on both sides worth anything?
The History of Coins With Angels on Both Sides
Coins that spot angels on both sides are also known as angel coins, guardian angel coins, or religious coins.
Religious organizations have historically issued these coins, particularly the Catholic Relief Service, headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland.
The Catholic Relief Service (CRS) is a global humanitarian agency founded in 1943 by the Catholic community and Bishops of the United States. The organization was initially founded to provide aid to refugees in war-torn European countries but has since founded a network of offices in more than 100 countries and across five continents.
The CRS began the tradition of issuing angel coins as a sign of peace, community, and love. These coins are issued as gifts or tokens of appreciation, for example, after donating or participating in CRS-related charity work.
Due to their religious connotation, many believe a coin with angels on both sides is a sign of good luck or magic.
Angel coins, however, date further back than the Catholic church’s tradition of issuing these tokens.
The earliest minted coin featuring an angel dates back to 1485. Also known as the Hendry VII Angel ND gold coin, it is among the oldest and most sought-after coins and is currently valued at $1,700.
In 1792 King Louis XVI of France sought to redesign the country’s coinage. He commissioned Augustin Dupre, a coin designer who loved angel portraits. In redesigning the coins, Dupre added an angel portrait on the reverse side of one of the coins.
However, King Louis XVI considered this new coin design a threat to his monarchy and leadership and subsequently sentenced Dupre to death by hanging. However, Dupree luckily escaped, and people attributed his lucky break to his angel coins.
From then on, lucky angel coins gained a reputation and became desirable to collectors and the masses at large. The legend goes that soldiers would not travel without carrying their lucky angel coins during the First and Second World Wars.
What Is the Meaning of a Coin With Angels on Both Sides?
You might have an angel coin if you come across a coin featuring an angel on the obverse and reverse.
Angel coins are not regular coins struck by the Mint; they are not legal tender or currency you can use in day-to-day transactions.
On the contrary, these tokens are considered lucky coins; people carry them around for protection and good fortune.
These coins feature the image of a guardian angel floating in the skies on the obverse and reverse. Billows of clouds feature in the background, and a halo hangs over the angel.
In religion and ancient mythology, guardian angels are believed to be mystical, ascended masters who exist in a different realm and watch over humans.
The belief in a divine, superior being watching, guiding and protecting us is what makes angel coins so special to some people.
These coins have no intrinsic, tradeable value; their metaphorical symbolism makes them special, mostly among religious or spiritual people.
In addition to the image on the obverse and reverse, you can identify angel coins by other features. Below are the general attributes of coins with angels on both sides:
- Composition: Steel with a brass finish
- Weight: 5.2 grams
- Diameter: 25.0 millimeters
- Thickness: 1.2 millimeters
Most coins with angels do not have any engravings or what’s referred to as legends on regular coins. Legends are the words or phrases found on a normal coin, such as a 2002 quarter or a 1972 half dollar. Examples of legends are words such as IN GOD WE TRUST, LIBERTY, E PLURIBUS UNUM, which you will find on regular legal currency.
You will not find such words on most angel coins, although some recent ones issued by the Catholic Relief are sometimes engraved with the words IN GOD WE TRUST.
Grading Coins With Angels on Both Sides
Grading is the mainstay of the coin-collecting hobby. It helps determine the value of a coin and whether it is worth adding to your collection.
The Sheldon Coin Grading Scale is the universal tool used in numismatic circles to grade currency coins officially. On a scale of 0 to 70, coins can be graded as poor to average and perfect.
The grade assigned to a coin helps determine whether it is worth more than its face value.
When it comes to angel coins, though, no scale is used to determine the coin’s value. The Sheldon scale, used to grade regular currency, cannot be used to grade coins with angels on both sides.
Angel coins do not have an economic value, so they are basically ungradable. Perhaps the best way to describe an angel coin’s condition is to categorize it as circulated and uncirculated.
Circulated angel coins, per se, will show signs of wear, such as dullness, smoothness, and contact marks on the obverse and reverse sides of the coin.
Uncirculated angel coins are still in their case. The coin has not been gifted to anyone and is, therefore, still shiny, with all the details intact and few contact marks on the surface.
How Much Is A Guardian Angel Coin Worth?
Undoubtedly, a guardian angel coin or a coin with angels on both sides is quite peculiar. The fact that it is so popular among religious and spiritual people makes this coin even more interesting.
So, is a coin with angels on both sides worth a lot?
The short answer is no.
First, there is no official or universal method to grade these coins, making it impossible to attach a monetary value.
Secondly, angel coins are not legal currency that you can use in day-to-day economic transactions. Therefore, you cannot measure their value in monetary terms.
Some people also assume that coins with angels on both sides are made of gold and, therefore, worth a lot.
This assumption could not be further from the truth! Coins with angels do not comprise any gold content. Rather, these coins are made from brass-plated steel; the brass finish gives the coins a shiny, goldish appearance, which some commemorative coin collectors mistake for gold.
When it comes to the value of guardian angel coins, the bottom line is that you can sell yours for as much as you want. On online platforms such as eBay or Etsy, it is common to see people sell their angel coins for as much as $5 apiece.
Coins with angels on both sides and special engravings may sell for more, but the seller has the last say on how they want to price their coin.
It is also possible to buy custom-made angel coins with special engravings. These coins might cost slightly more out of pocket, but this doesn’t mean that the coin is valuable in the numismatics sense.
Can You Find Angel Coins In Uncirculated Condition
In the numismatic circles, we talk about circulated and uncirculated coins. Circulated coins have exchanged hands, having been used in day-to-day transactions.
Circulated coins are typically not worth much, usually fetching more or less their face value. Of course, many popular coins are worth hundreds and even thousands in their circulated condition.
On the other hand, uncirculated coins have been preserved in rolls or bags and have not been used in day-to-day transactions. These coins are usually worth more than face value, and depending on the year, date, and grade, they can fetch thousands of dollars.
Collectors, therefore, prefer uncirculated coins. Many will pay exorbitant prices to acquire uncirculated specimens, especially those graded MS65 to MS70.
When it comes to coins with angels on both sides, you will also find circulated and uncirculated pieces. There are many uncirculated pieces which you can find on online selling platforms. These coins are preserved in their cases and have not been gifted yet.
However, uncirculated coins with angels on both sides are not more valuable than circulated angel coins. Just because an angel coin is still preserved in a case doesn’t mean it is worth more.
Understandably, some uncirculated angel coins will be sold for more than circulated pieces online, but the price difference is insignificant.
Keep in mind that you will not make a fortune from selling an uncirculated coin with angels on both sides. These coins do not hold any economic value; their value is sentimental and depends on the meaning you attach to the coin.
How To Get Value For Money With A Coin With Angels on Both Sides
Some collectors wonder whether investing in a coin with angels on both sides is worth it.
When looking for a coin to invest in, i.e. to buy and add to your collection, you should consider its present and potential future economic value.
While a coin may not be worth much now, mostly because it is recent, it might be worth a lot when it has aged.
Angel coins do not have any economic value now, nor will they in the future. Investing in such a coin for financial purposes might not be worth it because there is no system to determine how much you can sell later.
That said, you can add an angel coin to your collection to preserve as an antique or for your faith.
If you believe in guardian angels, God, The Divine, or Christ, owning a coin with angels on both sides might be a worthwhile spiritual investment. Such a coin may provide reassurance, peace of mind, satisfaction, and closure, qualities most humans desire.
All in all, investing in a coin with angels on both sides may not be a smart choice if you expect to make a fortune in the future. These coins only have an intrinsic value due to their religious symbolism; they lack any monetary significance.
You are better off investing in an uncirculated, graded, certified legal currency. Before adding any coin to your collection, find out how much it is worth and definitely do your due diligence to discover the coin’s origins, authenticity, and true market value.
If you are keen on acquiring a coin with angels on both sides, check out auction sites such as eBay and selling platforms such as Etsy. Niche platforms selling antique or unique coins may also sell you an angel coin.
You will find numerous sellers offering angel coins at different price points. Some coins will have engravings, and some will have a provision for custom engravings, usually at an extra cost.
Whether you want to gift a coin with angels on both sides or add one to your collection, it is best to pick an uncirculated one, if only for aesthetic purposes. Of course, if you find a used angel coin with great sentimental value, it might also be worth adding to your collection or gifting.
Contrary to popular belief, a coin with angels on both sides has no financial value. You can only keep them as a collector’s item but not for investment purposes.
In addition, angel coins are not made out of gold; the brass plating gives them a goldish appearance.
All in all, coins with angels on both sides are tokens with sentimental value to those with religious or spiritual inclinations. The best you can do is pass it on or preserve it as a keepsake.