There’s a birthday coming up for Prince George, the future king of England, and it’s a big one. The big Oh-One! Yes, Prince George Alexander Louis of Cambridge, as he is officially known, will turn one year old on July 22, and the United Kingdom has announced at least one of the ways the nation plans to celebrate the landmark event.
Prince George will be getting his very own new, limited edition coin, minted by the Royal Mint. While the coin will carry a face value of £5 — about $8.50 — it’s not a coin that British subjects will be likely to spend at their local pubs and chemists.
There will be only 7,500 of the new coins minted in honor of Prince George — and they will be selling to collectors for 16 times their actual value as currency, that is, £80, or about $136 each.
The coin will be the third minted in honor of Prince George in just his first year on the planet. The Royal Mint issued a coin to commemorate his birth, and another at the time Prince George was christened.
Prince George was seen taking his first public steps on Sunday, albeit with some help from his mom Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, when he attended a polo match in which his father, Prince William — the Duke of Cambridge — was playing. But the Royal Mint must have been taken by surprise, because there was no coin issued to mark that achievement.
But Prince George will have to wait until he becomes king to see his face on a British coin. Even though the new coin marks his first birthday, like all British currency, it will feature the face of his great-grandmother, Britain’s current monarch, the 88-year-old Queen Elizabeth II.
It could be quite a while before Prince George assumes the throne. He’ll have to wait for his grandfather, the 65-year-old Prince Charles, to get his shot at wearing the crown once Queen Elizabeth shuffles off this mortal coil. And once Charles passes, George’s own father, William, will become king.
The new coin will be minted from silver, for symbolic reasons.
“The choice of a silver coin is significant,” said Shane Bissett, the Royal Mint’s commemorative coin director. “The precious metal is closely associated with newborn babies, as crossing the palm of a newborn baby with silver is a way to wish them wealth and good health throughout their life, whilst the £5 coin is a favorite for royal celebrations.”
See the actual design of the commemorative Prince George birthday coin below.