Home Business Currency, mailbox, anthem… What the death of Elizabeth II will change

Currency, mailbox, anthem… What the death of Elizabeth II will change

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After the death of Elizabeth II Thursday, September 8, it is Charles III, her eldest son, who succeeds her and will reign over the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth. Beyond the historical dimension of the event, going from a queen to a king will lead to changes in the daily life of the British.

► From Elizabeth’s face to that of Charles

The emblematic profile of Queen Elizabeth will gradually give way to that of the new king, Charles III. Portraits of the latter have already been commissioned to appear on British banknotes and coins, but also on other currencies from the Eastern Caribbean, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. The shift will be gradual. Coins and banknotes bearing the image of the Queen only entered circulation in 1953, a year after her accession to the throne.

Since the 17th century, tradition has it that the direction of the face changes with each change of monarch. If it is respected, Charles’ profile will therefore be turned to the left. The face of the sovereign will also replace that of the queen on the stamps of the Royal Mail.

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► From one name to another

Gone, too, are the initials “ER” (for “Elizabeth Regina”) which appear on the mailboxes of the English post office. Any new box will bear the initials of the new king (“CR” for Charles Rex). The others are unlikely to be replaced – some still display those of George VI, Elizabeth’s father.

The shape of the crown, present alongside the initials, will also be modified. Traditionally, queens feature the crown of Saint Edward while kings prefer the more rounded Tudor crown. This will also affect the insignia of English police helmets.

► From a queen to the king

You don’t have to sing anymore God Save the Queen. Now the English anthem is called God Save the King and the lyrics will, logically, be masculinized. Many subtle changes are going to take place. The names of Her Majesty’s Government (“Her Majesty”), Treasury and Customs will become “His Majesty”. And “The King’s speech”, the king’s speech, which opens the parliamentary session and presents the government’s program to Parliament, will replace “The Queen’s speech”. As for certain lawyers, they will change from the status of QC (“Queen’s Counsel”) to that of KC (“King’s Counsel”).

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English, Australian, Canadian and New Zealand passports, issued in the name of the Crown, will also change the wording on the inside cover. More anecdotally, the name of Her Majesty’s Theater in the West End, London’s theater district, will become His Majesty’s Theatre.

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