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Two Different 1989 Two Pounds Coins
To celebrate the 300th anniversary of the Declaration of Rights in 1689, two different two pound coins were issued in 1989.
The Declaration of Rights
On 13th February 1689, at the Banqueting House, Whitehall, London, Prince William and Princess Mary of Orange were presented with a document by the Lords and Commons that marked a major change in the course of British parliamentary history.
The document stemmed from the revolutionary events of 1688 which influenced the social, economic, and political development of democratic countries around the world.
Known as the Declaration of Rights, this document sought to prevent a repetition of the abuses of King James II, such as maintaining a standing army in peacetime and raising money without parliamentary consent.
The declaration was principally an assertion of the rights of Parliament in its relations with the Crown, and effectively confirmed a shift in the balance of power from the Crown to Parliament.
It also encompassed legal reforms, as it placed strict limits on the operation of the judiciary, notably "that excessive Bayle ought not to be required nor excessive fynes imposed nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted".
William & Mary Crowned
Having accepted the Declaration, William and Mary were offered the throne, and were crowned as joint monarchs in April 1689. The Declaration itself was incorporated into an Act of Parliament as the Bill of Rights in December 1689.
In Scotland, William and Mary were recognised as King and Queen by the Convention of Estates on 11th April 1689.
This Convention adopted a Claim of Right which largely corresponds to the Bill of Rights in England.
The effects of the Bill of Rights and Claim of Right - free and regular elections, freedom of speech in Parliament, the proper distribution of governmental power, and protection of the rights of subjects and citizens - can be seen today in the way in which parliamentary government is conducted in the United Kingdom and in other countries around the world.
The Third Portrait
The obverse (head side) is the third major portrait of Queen Elizabeth II, designed by Ralph David Maklouf, FRSA.
It came into use in 1985 and continued until 1997 inclusive, a total of thirteen years.
The two coins differ only in the detail of their reverse designs. Both were designed by John Lobban, and depict the cypher of William and Mary, the House of Commons mace, and stylised representations of St. Edward's Crown and the Crown of Scotland, respectively.
The House of Commons meets for about 170 days each year to consider all aspects of government and many other issues which affect the lives of the citizens of this country. A procession of the mace and the Speaker begins each meeting.
The ceremonial mace evolved from the close-combat weaponry of the mounted knight. As maces grew more ornamental in design, they gradually became a symbol of prestige and, by the later middle ages, the use of a mace as an emblem of office was widespread in England.
The present House of Commons mace, originally made in 1660 and ornately decorated with the Royal Arms, is symbolic of the authority of Parliament.
English Version - Bill of Rights
The reverse of the English coin features the Crown of St. Edward, and the inscription:-
TERCENTENARY OF THE BILL OF RIGHTS
Scottish Version - Claim of Right
The reverse of the Scottish coin features the Crown of Scotland, and the inscription:-
TERCENTENARY OF THE CLAIM OF RIGHT
The edge is milled, with no inscription.
1989 Silver Proof Two Coin Set
1989 Silver Proof Piedfort Two Coin Set
Postage & Packing:
UK: At buyer's Risk £3.50 or
Fully Insured £9 (Usually by Royal Mail Special Delivery)
USA: Airmail at buyer's risk $10 or
Fully Insured $20
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Airmail to USA $10
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