About The Queen's Beasts Collection
The Queen’s Beasts Collection is inspired by centuries of history and royal heraldry. Discover more on the origins of these fantastical creatures who represent and guard Her Majesty The Queen.
When Her Majesty The Queen was crowned in 1953, the entrance to Westminster Abbey was guarded by 10 fantastical creatures – The Queen’s Beasts. This awe-inspiring line up of heraldic beasts symbolised the centuries of heritage inherited by the young woman about to be crowned queen.
The collection is a series of 10 coins from The Royal Mint, inspired by the ancestral beasts of heraldry, myth and legend that have watched over The Queen throughout her unprecedented reign, from her coronation to her Sapphire Jubilee.
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The Unicorn of Scotland
The design features a unicorn rearing up over a shield, which bears a lion. Around the edge of the face reads Unicorn of Scotland 2017. The obverse features the fifth portrait of The Queen to be used on coins. Both the obverse and reverse were designed by Royal Mint coin designer Jody Clark.
The exquisite design is captured on a Brilliant Uncirculated cupro-nickel coin. It's packaged in a charming display box and is accompanied by a booklet that was produced in collaboration with Clive Cheeseman, the Richmond Herald at the College of Arms.
About The Design
Scotland adopted the unicorn as its national animal way back in the 1300s. Historians believe it may have been selected thanks to its legendary rivalry with the lion - a beast that England had chosen as its national emblem around a century earlier!
Synonymous with nobility and purity, the unicorn is a creature of both great power and great gentleness, a kind of foil to the strength and ferocity of England's lion. Although their history is one of emnity and rivalry, since the accession of King James I in 1603, the unicorn and the lion have appeared together on the royal coat of arms, united as heraldic supporters.
The Unicorn of Scotland is the second release in the collection. Royal Mint coin designer Jody Clark has taken centuries of tradition and combined it with contemporary design to create a series of dynamic reverse designs.