When Her Majesty The Queen was crowned in 1953, ten statues lined the entrance to Westminster Abbey. Each beast represented the heraldry of the new queen, symbols of the monarchs in whose footsteps she walked. The Queen’s Beasts have since been brought to life in a series of coins designed by the man behind the latest definitive coinage portrait of The Queen – Royal Mint designer Jody Clark. The white horse represents The Queen’s Hanoverian ancestry. In 1714 Georg Ludwig, ruler of the German duchy of Hanover, succeeded to the throne of Great Britain as George I; bringing with him the heraldry of the region including the device of a white horse on a red background. This design highlights the white horse’s strong silhouette, giving it a look of strength and realism, befitting this magnificent heraldic beast. The badge on the horse’s shield bears the three lions of England, the lion of Scotland, the fleur-de-lis of France, the Irish harp and the Arms for Hanover.
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