The crown piece issued in 1977 in celebration of the Silver Jubilee of Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II is fondly remembered not only because it stands as a symbol of a joyful national event but also because of the elegant designs for the coin that were prepared by Arnold Machin. Over 37 million cupro-nickel crowns were struck bearing on the obverse his equestrian portrait of the Queen and on the reverse the ampulla and anointing spoon from the royal regalia surrounded by a floral border and surmounted by a crown.

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Some pre-production versions of the coin, such as this specimen from the Royal Mint Museum collection, carried the same floral border and crown but with the figure 25 placed at the centre, in reference to the number of years represented by the Silver Jubilee. This option, although taken to the stage of struck pieces, garnered little support from the Mint’s design committee at the time. Another design element, the ampulla, draws questions of a different nature, as the item is largely unknown to those unfamiliar with the royal regalia. Aside from being a beautiful design solution, the selection of this particular combination of elements has broadened knowledge of some of the oldest items in the regalia to have remained in continual use at coronations.

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