Outer: Nickel-brass (76% copper, 4% nickel, 20% zinc)
Inner: Cupro-nickel (75% copper, 25% nickel)
|Obverse Designer||Ian Rank-Broadley|
|Reverse Designer||Paul Stafford & Benjamin Right|
|Edge Inscription||THE AUTHORISED VERSION|
Few books have had such an impact on the world as the King James Bible, a cornerstone of our culture and language. First published in 1611, its influence on the English language is still evident today and it remains one of the best-loved Bible translations.
The spirit of the King James Bible is captured on the £2 coin celebrating its 400th anniversary. Cleverly reminding us that printing concerns were at the heart of the matter in 1611, the reverse design displays the first words from the book of John – ‘In the beginning was the Word’ – in the reversed raised text of the printing block on the left and the recessed text of the printed word on the right. The words chosen for the edge inscription – ‘THE AUTHORISED VERSION’ – complete the story. The obverse bears the portrait of Her Majesty The Queen by Ian Rank-Broadley FRBS.
The first base metal £2 coin was issued in the United Kingdom in 1986 to commemorate the Thirteenth Commonwealth Games which was held in Scotland. Commemorative £2 coins continued to be issued in single colour nickel-brass for special occasions. After a review of the United Kingdom’s coinage in 1994, it emerged that there was a requirement for a circulating £2 coin. A consultation process took place with the vending machine industry, members of the public and special interest groups such as the RNIB and Age Concern. The consensus of opinion from the consultation favoured a bicolour coin because it would be easily distinguishable from the other coins in circulation. The bimetallic £2 coin was launched on 15 June 1998 and millions were released into circulation.