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RULE BRITANNIA! Evolution of an Icon

British numismatic historian, Justin Robinson, takes us on a fascinating journey spanning 2000 years as he examines how the powerful symbol of Britannia changed and evolved over the centuries.

Roman Britannia

History does not record the name of the engraver who first depicted Britannia on coins. She appeared for the first time during the reign of Emperor Hadrian (117-138 AD), and is presented as a rather forlorn figure, with one hand resting on her chin as if she is contemplating her fate under Roman occupation. In…

Britannia Returns!

In 1661, King Charles II invited three Dutch brothers to move to London to join the Royal Mint as engravers. Their father, Philip Roettiers, a goldsmith in Antwerp, had loaned money to Charles during his time in exile and had been promised employment for his sons when the monarchy was restored. The royal invitation announcing…

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