Information about effigy: Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait, by Mary Gillick

Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait, by Mary Gillick
United Kingdom / Two Shillings (Florin) 1953

Effigy of Queen Elizabeth II designed by Mary Gillick. Wreathed head of the Queen to right.

Mary Gillick was a sculptor best known for her effigy of Elizabeth II used on coinage in the United Kingdom and elsewhere from 1953 to 1970.

In 1952, Gillick's effigy design was selected from a field of seventeen to be used on general-circulation coinage for the new Queen Elizabeth, first issued in 1953.

According to the Royal Mint "The portrait was fresh, evocative and beautifully reflected the optimistic mood of the nation as it greeted a new Elizabethan era. It was designed by Mary Gillick and shows The Queen wearing a wreath."

Gillick's design was notable for portraying the Queen uncrowned, and was the last to be used on the pre-decimal coinage.

In keeping with tradition, all Maundy money and various commemorative issues continued to use this first official effigy of Her Majesty even after other effigies were adopted for regular coins.

Gillick's die master had insufficient relief, and the striking was too weak. Facial features and the dress folds in the shoulder disappeared. The problem was solved by re-cutting the dies. This remastering was performed by Cecil Thomas, an experienced medalist who had already crafted overseas currencies featuring Elizabeth II, but who had initially been turned down for the British coinage in preference to Gillick. In most countries, the switch happened between years, so the coins of one year had the old die and those of the next year the new one; however, in New Zealand for example, it happened mid-year creating "no shoulder strap" varieties. As a matter of pedantic interest, it has to be said that the so-called "shoulder strap" is not, in actual fact, a strap but a fold in Her Majesty's gown.

A cameo of Gillick's effigy of the Queen has also been used on British commemorative stamps since 1966.

The effigy was used on both United Kingdom coinage and the coinage of many Commonwealth countries until Arnold Machin’s portrait of Queen Elizabeth II was adopted. The exception is Maundy Money. All Maundy pieces continue to use the original obverse design for Queen Elizabeth II by Mary Gillick, although the bust of the Queen on other British coins has been repeatedly replaced as she ages. At the time of decimalisation, the Royal Mint Advisory Commission recommended the retention out of affection for the Gillick design; this was accepted by the Queen.

Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait, by Mary Gillick - Example/s on coins
United Kingdom / Two Shillings (Florin) 1953

First master die ("No shoulder strap"), copper-nickel proof

United Kingdom / Two Shillings (Florin) 1953

The lack of relief of the master die can be seen on this Cupro-Nickel proof coin of 1953, which was one of the earliest strikes of the new obverse design on coinage of the United Kingdom.

Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait, by Mary Gillick - (556) Coins (Page 1 of 6)
CountryNameMintageLegend
Australia Halfpenny 1953 23,967,376 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Australia Threepence 1953 7,664,000 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Australia Penny 1953 13,138,816 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Australia Shilling 1953 12,204,000 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Australia Florin 1953 12,658,000 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Australia Sixpence 1953 1,152,000 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
New Zealand Florin 1953 257,000 QUEEN ELIZABETH THE SECOND +
New Zealand Coronation Crown 1953 257,000 QUEEN ELIZABETH THE SECOND +
New Zealand Penny 1953 2,407,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
New Zealand Half Crown 1953 127,000 QUEEN ELIZABETH THE SECOND +
New Zealand Shilling 1953 207,000 QUEEN ELIZABETH THE SECOND +
New Zealand Halfpenny 1953 727,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
New Zealand Threepence 1953 4,007,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
New Zealand Sixpence 1953 1,207,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
United Kingdom Shilling 1953 English 41,982,894 ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA BRITT: OMN: REGINA
United Kingdom Halfpenny 1953 8,950,000 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REGINA F: D:
United Kingdom Two Pounds 1953 (not released) unknown ELIZABETH II DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REGINA F: D: +
United Kingdom Threepence 1953 (Maundy) 1,078 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REGINA F: D:
United Kingdom Five Pounds 1953 (not released) unknown ELIZABETH II DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REGINA F: D: +
United Kingdom Half Sovereign 1953 (not released) unknown ELIZABETH II DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REGINA F: D: +
United Kingdom Halfcrown 1953 3,923,214 ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA BRITT: OMN: REGINA
United Kingdom Sixpence 1953 70,363,876 ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA BRITT: OMN: REGINA
United Kingdom Sovereign 1953 (not released) unknown ELIZABETH II DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REGINA F: D: +
United Kingdom Two Shillings (Florin) 1953 11,998,710 ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA BRITT: OMN: REGINA +
United Kingdom Fourpence 1953 (Maundy) 1,078 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REGINA F: D:
United Kingdom Twopence 1953 (Maundy) 1,025 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REGINA F: D:
United Kingdom Threepence 1953 (Brass) 30,658,000 ELIZABETH II DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REGINA F: D: +
United Kingdom Penny 1953 1,348,400 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRA : BRITT : OMN : REGINA F : D :
United Kingdom Farthing 1953 6,149,202 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REGINA F: D:
United Kingdom Shilling 1953 Scottish 20,703,528 ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA BRITT: OMN: REGINA
United Kingdom Penny 1953 (Maundy) 1,050 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REGINA F: D:
Australia Florin 1954 15,366,000 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Australia Sixpence 1954 7,672,000 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Australia Shilling 1954 16,188,000 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Australia Halfpenny 1954 21,962,880 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Australia Florin 1954 Royal Visit 4,000,000 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
Australia Threepence 1954 2,672,000 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
New Zealand Halfpenny 1954 240,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
New Zealand Threepence 1954 4,000,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
New Zealand Sixpence 1954 1,200,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
New Zealand Penny 1954 1,080,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
United Kingdom Farthing 1954 6,566,400 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Halfcrown 1954 11,614,953 ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA
United Kingdom Twopence 1954 (Maundy) 1,020 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Threepence 1954 (Maundy) 1,076 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Fourpence 1954 (Maundy) 1,050 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Shilling 1954 Scottish 26,771,735 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA
United Kingdom Two Shillings (Florin) 1954 13,085,422 ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA +
United Kingdom Threepence 1954 (Brass) 41,720,000 ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F: D: +
United Kingdom Penny 1954 1 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Shilling 1954 English 30,162,032 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA
United Kingdom Penny 1954 (Maundy) 1,088 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Halfpenny 1954 19,375,200 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Sixpence 1954 105,241,150 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA
Australia Threepence 1955 27,089,040 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
Australia Penny 1955 17,447,101 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
Australia Sixpence 1955 14,249,200 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F: D:
Australia Halfpenny 1955 9,343,021 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Australia Shilling 1955 7,493,200 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA F: D:
New Zealand Sixpence 1955 1,600,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
New Zealand Halfpenny 1955 240,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
New Zealand Penny 1955 3,720,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
New Zealand Threepence 1955 4,000,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
New Zealand Shilling 1955 200,000 QUEEN ELIZABETH THE SECOND +
United Kingdom Shilling 1955 English 45,259,908 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA
United Kingdom Threepence 1955 (Brass) 41,075,200 ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F: D: +
United Kingdom Shilling 1955 Scottish 27,950,906 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA
United Kingdom Twopence 1955 (Maundy) 1,082 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Halfpenny 1955 18,465,600 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Two Shillings (Florin) 1955 25,887,253 ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA +
United Kingdom Halfcrown 1955 23,628,726 ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA
United Kingdom Threepence 1955 (Maundy) 1,082 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Penny 1955 (Maundy) 1,036 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Farthing 1955 5,779,200 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Sixpence 1955 109,929,554 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA
United Kingdom Fourpence 1955 (Maundy) 1,082 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
Australia Sixpence 1956 7,905,500 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F: D:
Australia Florin 1956 8,091,500 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
Australia Threepence 1956 14,089,500 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
Australia Shilling 1956 6,065,500 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA F: D:
Australia Penny 1956 25,994,917 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
New Zealand Sixpence 1956 2,000,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
New Zealand Penny 1956 3,600,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
New Zealand Shilling 1956 800,000 QUEEN ELIZABETH THE SECOND +
New Zealand Halfpenny 1956 1,200,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
New Zealand Threepence 1956 4,800,000 QUEEN · ELIZABETH · THE · SECOND +
United Kingdom Shilling 1956 English 44,970,009 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA
United Kingdom Two Shillings (Florin) 1956 47,824,500 ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA +
United Kingdom Threepence 1956 (Brass) 36,901,600 ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F: D: +
United Kingdom Twopence 1956 (Maundy) 1,088 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Threepence 1956 (Maundy) 1,088 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Sixpence 1956 109,841,555 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA
United Kingdom Halfcrown 1956 33,934,909 ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA
United Kingdom Farthing 1956 1,996,800 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Penny 1956 (Maundy) 1,100 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Shilling 1956 Scottish 42,853,639 + ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA
United Kingdom Halfpenny 1956 21,799,200 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
United Kingdom Fourpence 1956 (Maundy) 1,088 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
Australia Florin 1957 9,279,256 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D :
Australia Sixpence 1957 13,753,256 + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F: D:
Showing 1 to 100 of 556 Coins.
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Royal Mint
Royal Mint
Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait, by Mary Gillick: Details
Year1953
Personal InformationQueen Elizabeth II
Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait, by Mary Gillick: Photos
ImageDetails
Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait, by Mary Gillick: Photo Proof Coin - Florin, Elizabeth II, Great Britain, 1953 Proof Coin - Florin, Elizabeth II, Great Britain, 1953
Copyright: Museum Victoria / CC BY
Author: Justine Philip
Notes: First master die ("No shoulder strap"). Cupro-Nickel (Proof).
Source
Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait, by Mary Gillick: Photo Proof Coin - 1 Penny, New Zealand, 1953 Proof Coin - 1 Penny, New Zealand, 1953
Copyright: Museum Victoria / CC BY
Author: Heath Warwick
Notes: First master die. Bronze (Proof).
Source
Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait, by Mary Gillick: Photo Proof Coin - 50 Cents, Canada Proof Coin - 50 Cents, Canada
Copyright: Museum Victoria / CC BY
Author: Jennifer McNair
Notes: Re-cut master die. Silver (Proof).
Source
Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait, by Mary Gillick: Photo Coin - 1 Penny, New Zealand, 1956 Coin - 1 Penny, New Zealand, 1956
Copyright: Museum Victoria / CC BY
Author: Jennifer McNair
Notes: Re-cut master die. Bronze.
Source
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