Paper Money

Early sightings of royalty found on Bank of Canada note

Editor's note: this is the second part of a series by Jeff Starck exploring the parade of paper money featuring Queen Elizabeth II. The feature appears in the September monthly issue of Coin World

From an early age, royal watchers and subjects could celebrate the young princess. 

The earliest note depicting the future queen is from Canada. 

Collectors will find the sweet portrait of a very young Princess Elizabeth on the Bank of Canada $20 notes issued in 1935. Canada, being part of the British Empire at the time, used portraits of the royal family on its paper money. 

The portrait on the note shows the queen when she was just 8 years old.

Read the other pieces to this story:

In 1958, Hong Kong issued a new $1 note, this time featuring the young ruler. Though issued six years after she became queen, and five years after her coronation, the vignette on the note shows an early image of the queen, from 1952. 

The six-year lag time for the queen’s image to appear on bank notes actually was a fairly small time difference, compared to some other notes honoring her.

For example, the portrait on a 1974 $1 note from Fiji dates to 1955, and Great Britain’s £1 note issued from 1981 to 1984 (the final note of the denomination for the United Kingdom) displays a portrait from 1956. 

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