Sunday, August 21, 2022

"Weird! What a shape! This is money?" - Ron Weasley

Ron Weasley (and the Wizarding World in general) may not think much of Muggle coinage but, fortunately for the people of England, the Royal Mint does not share that sentiment. Indeed, they just made the following announcement:

"We are thrilled to announce that we will be releasing a new collection of UK coins celebrating 25 years since the publication of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, a book that continues to inspire a love of reading in countless people all over the world. The idea for Harry Potter, the boy in glasses who didn’t yet know he was a wizard, first came to J.K. Rowling during a delayed train journey from Manchester to London. From that moment of magic, the Boy Who Lived was imagined into being – an unassuming, eleven-year-old hero destined to face terrible danger, but also find greatness within himself. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was published by Bloomsbury Children’s Books in 1997, the first of J.K. Rowling’s spellbinding adventures of Harry Potter, and his unforgettable friends Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger. In 2015, Bloomsbury commissioned artist Jim Kay to create the first fully illustrated edition of J.K. Rowling’s classic story."

Followed by a proclamation from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II: “determining the specifications and designs for a new series of two hundred pound, twenty-five pound and fifty pence gold coins; a new series of ten pound, five pound, two pound and fifty pence silver coins; and a new series of fifty pence cupro-nickel coins.”

These coins will have a variety of classic and in some cases comic Potter quotes. In fact, I suspect the classic comic ones will be the most prevalent, as I have it on good authority that one will be the Latin words for “never tickle a sleeping dragon”, with another being Dumbledore's immortal "Nitwit! Blubber! Oddment! Tweak!" So we can chalk up another, this time royal, piece of evidence of the power of Fantasy. Now the English (& Scottish & Welsh) can buy Fantasy books with Fantasy-inspired coins.

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