The angel was an English gold coin introduced by Edward IV in 1465. It was patterned after the French angelot or ange, which had been issued since 1340. The name derived from its representation of the archangel Michael slaying a dragon. As it was considered a new issue of the noble, it was also called the angel-noble.
In 1472, the half-angel was introduced with a similar design weighing 40 grains (2.6 grams) with a diameter of 20 to 21 millimeters.
Reverse: Depicts a ship with arms and rays of sun at the masthead. Legend: per crucem tuam salva nos christe redemptor, meaning "By Thy cross save us, Christ Redeemer."
The angel varied in value from 6 shillings 8 pence to 11 shillings between Edward's reign and the time of James I. Under Charles I, it was last coined in 1642.
In 1663, Charles II replaced the existing coinage with entirely new designs struck by machine ("milled"). The standard gold coin then became the Guinea.
The angel was such an iconic coin that many English pubs were named after it. The Angel Inn in Islington (after which the Angel tube station is named) was one of these.
The angel was traditionally given to sufferers of the disease known as "king's evil", in a mediaeval ceremony intended to heal them with the "royal touch". After it was no longer minted, medals with the same device (called touch pieces) were given instead.