Britannia first appeared on the coins of the Emperor Hadrian over 2,000 years ago. As the Roman Empire expanded, conquered provinces were personified with female figures; a means to establish order and create a sense of unity.
Restored to British coinage in 1672 during the reign of Charles II, she’s appeared on the coins of every subsequent monarch. Reassuring and resolute she’s a rallying point come crisis or celebration, an embodiment of our national pride. Instantly recognizable all over the world, Britannia resonates with international investors, a trusted symbol of the quality of British minting.
The Royal Mint is proud to present the 2023 Britannia coin featuring Philip Nathan’s classic design with one final image of Queen Elizabeth Standing firm in the eye of the storm, she displays an unyielding resolve. Since it was chosen to adorn the very first Britannia bullion coin in 1987, it has been acclaimed as a modern masterpiece.
For more than 1,000 years The Royal Mint has innovated to create coins that are both beautiful and secure. In 2022, Britannia, the symbol of Britain, leads the way to redefine security in the bullion market, the embodiment of this drive for the very best in design and security. This latest evolution of an icon takes Philip Nathan’s acclaimed interpretation of Britannia and adds four groundbreaking security features to create the most visually secure coin in the world. These additions both decorate and protect the coin, just as the micro-text that borders the design states – DECUS ET TUTAMEN, or AN ORNAMENT AND A SAFEGUARD. In the lower left-hand of the design, below Britannia’s flowing gown, is a trident to represent her naval history. As the viewer changes their perspective this trident becomes a padlock, emphasizing the coin’s secure nature. Surface animation behind Britannia reflects the movement of waves, and fine details like the Union Flag on Britannia’s shield have been highlighted by tincture lines.