Wednesday, 10 March 2010

2010:365:69 Q is for Queen

Coins were my third thought for the letter Q...  First, as I drove past Queen's University I considered stopping but everywhere was busy.  It is an attractive building and I have happy memories of four years in it studying geography.
The stamp collection was my second idea.  The oldest book in that pile goes right back to the 1950s when with the enthusiasm of childhood I stuck in anything that came my way.  Gradually my interests narrowed until, in recent years, it is only UK issues that I collect.  Sadly, for some time now, the books have remained unopened.  I love the colours and designs, the little differences....
This little pile is from the stock book and shows something of the variety of designs used over the reign of Queen Elizabeth II.  Of course, I had to play a bit too.

This was a royal rainbow although the yellow stamp isn't very yellow at all.
And so to coins where the changing design of the Queen's head is an interesting development.  I don't have any coins in Belfast from before 1968 but since then these have been the portrait designers:
1968-1984 Arnold Machin.
1985-1997  Raphael Maklouf.
Since 1998 Ian Rank-Broadley.

For non UK readers these are 1 penny on the left and then the three designs (in reverse order) of the 2 penny/2 pence coin.  (1 p and 2 p is the normal way to talk about them.)  Since 1992 they've been made from copper plated steel instead of bronze.

I can see why collectors become obsessive when they begin to look at coins or stamps.  If I were to take the albums off the shelf hours could pass as I examine with the aid of a magnifying glass all the beauty of design and colour.  But not tonight.  365Project has reminded me of a hobby that I enjoy a great deal and maybe ought to resurrect.

Lord of creation;
look with favour on the world you have made,
guide the nations in the ways of justice and of peace,
and bless Elizabeth our Queen and all in authority.

Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.

Book of Common Prayer
From Eucharistic Prayer Two

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