What is European Gold?

Table of Contents

European gold has a history dating back to Ancient Rome and Ancient Greece, where gold was used to purchase goods and services, and was also used to create ornamental jewelry and religious artifacts. Gold from this region may vary greatly in karat – from 9 karat all the way to 24 karat gold. This is because European gold may be from any one of a variety of countries including Austria, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Great Britain, Italy, France, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland. 

In the most general terms, European gold may be 10 karat, 14 karat or 18 karat. To illustrate both ends of the spectrum: gold from Great Britain could be as low as 9 karat; while Italian gold is normally between 14 karat and 18 karat. Some European gold may not be stamped, but if you bring it into a reputable dealer they’ll be able to tell you exactly how many karats you have by doing a simple test.

Jewels and gold coins over dark background
jewels and gold coins 1

When European gold is marked, this is what you’ll usually see:


  • 9 karat gold- either “9k” or “375”
  • 10 karat gold – either “10k” or “417”
  • 14 karat gold – either “14k” or “585”
  • 18 karat gold – either “18k” or “750”


Gold Coins

  • ECU Platinum 13.75 grams
jewelry appraisal near me

What parts of Europe does European gold come from?

European gold is often mined in the following countries: 

  • Bulgaria
  • Finland 
  • Spain
  • Sweden

More on European gold and mining

Europe is not a top world producer of gold. However, the countries of Finland, Sweden and the area known as Bohemia (now, present day Czeckloslovakia) have rich histories in gold production dating back to the 13th and 14th centuries. 

Finland is one of the top producers of gold in the European Union. The Kittilä mine, owned by a Canadian company, is the top mine in Finland.

How many karats is European gold?

In Europe, different countries have different standards when it comes to gold. For gold jewelry, karats may range from 14 karat to 18 karat. Some countries have lower gold-karat standards, like England and Germany, where 9 karat gold is commonplace. 

Wedding rings

When talking about wedding rings in Europe, Germany and England have a lower standard for gold wedding rings than the rest of Europe. Wedding rings in Germany and England are often 9 karat. But one thing is common in all of Europe: everywhere in Europe wedding rings are most often worn on the right ring finger, such is the case of countries like Austria, England,Germany, Greece and Poland.

How to tell if it’s European gold or not

The standard criteria for European gold is easy to understand. In Europe, gold is often marked with a number representing its gold content. Here are three examples:
  • Gold marked with a “585” means 58.5% pure, 14 karat gold.
  • Gold marked with a “750” means 75% pure, 18 karat gold.
  • Gold marked with “999” or “1000” means pure, 24 karat gold. 
Items that are older may not be stamped. This does not mean these items are fake – it just means these items were produced before Europe recognized its stamping standard. 


In England, some gold jewelry may be marked with a “c” instead of a “k”. This is because from 1789 to 1975 gold karat was spelled “carat” in England.

Can you sell European gold in the United States?

Yes. Keep in mind, European gold can range in karat and in value, which is why it’s important to work with a trusted dealer when you’re looking to buy or sell European gold. A reputable dealer will be honest about the value of your item and will be able to test any gold pieces that are not marked.

Can you buy European gold jewelry?

Yes. European gold jewelry and coins can be bought anywhere – from the markets of European cities to the online marketplaces of the internet. It’s important to find a trusted dealer who knows these gold items and their value.

Choose Crown Gold Exchange

Crown Gold Exchange holds the utmost respect for you and your valuables. When you visit one of our locations, we make sure that you feel welcome, and that your property is protected. We use industry-standard equipment to ensure accurate measurement of your valuables, and we have a special process to keep your valuables safe. Our accuracy enables us to offer you top dollar, and we have several different payment methods available for your convenience, so you won’t be waiting around to get paid.

Crown Gold Exchange will purchase any kind of gold you bring us, including 8-karat, 10-karat, 14-karat, 18-karat, 21-karat, 22-karat, 24-karat, or anything else. We buy gold bars, gold bullion, gold jewelry and some gold plated items like pocket watches. If you happen to be in possession of an exclusive piece made by a top gold designer such as Cartier, Tiffany, Rolex, or Patek Philippe, we will often pay more than the weight of the item. Such special pieces often command a higher price on the secondary market due to their superior craftsmanship.

Skip to content