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1 Pound 1938, Isle of Man

in Banknotes Book Number: IM13c
Years of issue: 01.10.1938
Signatures: General Manager: Mr. J.M. Furniss
Serie: Martins Bank Limited
Specimen of: 02.04.1929
Material: Cotton fiber
Size (mm): 150 x 84
Printer: Waterlow and Sons Limited, London

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** The word "Specimen" is present only on some of electronic pictures, in accordance with banknote images publication rules of appropriate banks.

1 Pound 1938




1 Pound 1938

coat of arms

On left side is the coat of arms of Martins Bank Limited.

Martins’ Coat of Arms is not the product of ad-men trying to offer some kind of subliminal sales message. It is the result of one of the more curious periods in the Bank’s history: Martin’s Private Bank is absorbed in 1918 by the Bank of Liverpool, but following pressure from the directors of one of the later constituent banks – the Lancashire and Yorkshire Bank - the Bank of Liverpool and Martins is made to shorten its name to Martins Bank Limited in 1928. The name of Martins lives on at the expense of the Bank of Liverpool. The coat of arms, first created for the Bank of Liverpool and Martins, is deemed so important, that in the personalised welcome booklet given to all new staff, the Bank explains the significance of the design in great detail on the very first page:

"The Bank's Coat of Arms is a combination of the Liver Bird of Liverpool, which appears in the ancient Coat of Arms of the City, and Sir Thomas Gresham's famous Grasshopper, which is to be seen hanging outside the Bank's principal London Office at 68, Lombard Street.

Liver bird grasshopper

The grasshopper was the personal emblem of Tudor financier Sir Thomas Gresham (c1519-1579). Gresham's statue on Holborn Viaduct. Sir Thomas was a hugely influential figure in 16th century London. He founded the first Royal Exchange in 1565, which helped turn London into a global centre of finance.

The Liver Bird represents the former Bank of Liverpool, the root of the Bank's family tree, which was founded in 1831 and, in 1918, absorbed the old private bank known as Martin's Bank Limited".

This old private bank, with a great tradition in the City of London, had used the sign of the Grasshopper for many generations; indeed, according to tradition, this sign was displayed on the site of 68, Lombard Street as long ago as 1563. A number of other banks which were absorbed or acquired also had distinguishing symbols, but in 1928, when the name of the Bank was shortened from Bank of Liverpool and Martins Limited to Martins Bank Limited, it was decided to retain only the Liverpool and London symbols in the new Coat of Arms, which has been accepted by the College of Heralds. The heraldic description of the Coat of Arms is as follows:

“Or, a Liver Bird (or Cormorant) Sable, holding in the beak a branch

of Laver (or Seaweed) Vert, on a Chief of the third a Grasshopper of the first”.

On the Bank's stationery it is printed in black and white, {the various dots and lines representing the colours, so that it is possible to "read" the colours by having knowledge of the printer's black and white interpretation which is, of course, standard.

There is, therefore, a great deal of history behind Martins iconic coat of arms, and of all the many mergers in Martins’ 400 year history, it is the union of the grasshopper and the liver bird that is deemed most important, and gives is Martins’ magnificent Head Office building at No 4 Water street Liverpool. Martins is the only national bank to dare to conduct its business outside London. The coat of arms is a feature of cheques and some other stationery items and publications until the end of Martins in 1969. (

Tower of Rufuge

The Refuge Tower (on right side of banknote) is a toothed stone structure that was erected on St Mary's Island (also known as Conister Rock) in Douglas Bay, Isle of Man to provide shelter to sailors who were wrecked on the cliff. The tower was built thanks to the efforts of Sir William Hillary, who was instrumental in several rescues of sailors stranded on the cliff, and culminated in the heroic rescue of the crew of the Saint George Steam Packet Company RMS St George when it collapsed on the cliff in the early morning of November 20, 1830. Sir William personally contributed a significant portion of the costs and secured a significant amount of public donations to fund the construction.

The insidious island of St. Mary was a notorious shipping hazard. The stone has been in the possession of the Quen family for many years, and in 1832, Captain John Quen, Attorney General of the Isle of Man, presented the stone to Sir William Hillary in his capacity as President of the Isle of Man. then called the National Institute for the Rescue of People from Shipwrecks, which later became the Royal National Lifeboat Institute.

List of sponsors for the construction of the Refuge Tower and statement of the groundbreaking ceremony, April 1832.

The cost of building the tower was 254 pounds sterling 12 shillings. There were 63 subscribers with a total donation of £ 181 6 shillings, with the remainder of £ 73 6 owing to the builder and architect. Thus, this amount was paid by Sir William, despite the fact that he and his family had already contributed £ 8. Subscribers to the construction of the tower included the Isle of Man Harbor Commissioners (£ 75), Foxdale and Luxy Mines (£ 2 each), Mona Packet Company (£ 5), John Quen (£ 5). , Tobin family (£ 12). The average subscription was £ 1 and came from many prominent Maine families. One specific donation was from Thomas Tobin, who donated the banner of St. George, which cost him £ 5. It was the first flag to be flown on the tower on Thursday 15 August 1833.


1 Pound 1938

Castle Rushen

Castle Rushen (Manx: Cashtal Rosien) - on left side of Banknote - is a medieval castle located in the Isle of Man's historic capital, Castletown, in the south of the island. It towers over the Market Square to the south-east and the harbour to the north-east. The castle is amongst the best examples of medieval castles on the British Isles, and is still in use as a court house, museum and educational center.

This castle is considered as the chief fortress in the island. According to the Manks tradition, it was built about the year 960, by Guttred, grandson to a King of Denmark, and the 2d of a succession of 12 kings, by them called Orrys. This building, which is even now remarkably solid, is said by Challoner, Sacheverell, and other writers, to be reckoned by travellers a striking resemblance of the castle of Elsinore in Denmark. Guttred, the founder, lies buried in its walls, but the exact spot where, has not been handed down. As this fortress has at different times suffered several sieges, the repairs of the damages sustained must have somewhat altered its interior parts, though in all probability the keep of the castle itself is still in its original form.

The Manksmen, according to Waldron, had a strange tradition concerning this castle, which, as it will probably divert the reader, is here transcribed in his own words: "Just at the entrance of the castle is a great stone chair for the governor, and two lesser for the deempsters: here they try all causes, except ecclesiastical, which are entirely under the decision of the bishop. When you are past this little court, you enter into a long winding passage between two high walls, not much unlike what is described of Rosamond's Labyrinth at Woodstock: in case of an attack, 10,000 men might be destroyed by a very few in attempting to enter.

The extremity of it brings you to a room where the keys sit. They are 24 in number; they call them the parliament; but, in my opinion, they more resemble our juries in England, because the business of their meeting is to adjust differences between the common people, and are locked in till they have given in their verdict. They may be said in this sense, indeed, to be supreme judges, because from them there is no appeal but to the lord himself.

....Our author here quotes from Waldron some of the traditional tales concerning this castle, but as they have already been printed by the Manx Society in their XIth Volume, it is unnecessary to repeat them here.

"The castle, as also the two walls which encompass it, and are broad enough for three persons to walk abreast on, are all of freestone, which is the only building in the island of that sort. Within the walls is a small tower adjoining to the castle, where formerly state-prisoners were kept, but serves now as a store-house for the Lord Derby's wines: It has a moat round it, and draw-bridge, and is a very strong place On the other side of the castle is the governor's house, which is very commodious and spacious. Here is also a fine chapel, where divine service is celebrated morning and afternoon, and several offices belonging to the court of chancery." (


In loweright corner is an emblem of Isle of Man - Triskelion.

A triskelion or triskele (which invariably has rotational symmetry) is a motif consisting of three interlocked spirals, three bent human legs, or three bent/curved lines extending from the center of the symbol. Both words are from Greek "τρισκέλιον" (triskelion) or "τρισκελής" (triskeles), "three-legged", from prefix "τρι-" (tri-), "three times" + "σκέλος" (skelos), "leg".

Although it appears in many places and periods including 3200 BCE Newgrange, it is especially characteristic of the Celtic art of the La Tène culture of the European Iron Age.

A triskelion is the symbol of Sicily, where it is called trinacria, as well as of the Isle of Man, Brittany, and the town of Füssen in Germany.

It is unknown how the Manx triskelion was originally adopted, and several theories have been put forward its origin. In 1607, English historian William Camden stated that it was derived from the Sicilian triskelion. In 1885 John Newton considered the Manx triskelion originated in the mid XIII century, when the Pope offered the throne of Sicily to Edmund, son of King Henry III of England. Newton noted that the wife of King Alexander III of Scotland was Henry's daughter, and that Alexander visited the English court in 1255. Later in 1266, Norway ceded the Isle of Man to the Kingdom of Scotland, and Newton considered it likely that Alexander utilized the triskelion for the arms of his new possession. It has also been suggested that the ancestry of the Manx triskelion can be traced to the triquetra in a coin of Olaf Cuaran, a X-century Norse-Gaelic warlord who was king of Northumbria and king of Dublin. Lending credibility to this theory is the current belief that the mediaeval Manx dynasty was related to that of Olaf Cuaran. However, the gap between the X century and late 13th century, when the Manx triskelion is first recorded, is wide indeed, and it has been noted that several kings from this period are known to have borne a galley as their emblem, and not a triskelion.

Early examples of the symbol are present in the Royal Arms ascribed to the King of Mann in several late XIII century armorials. The Manx triskelion also appears on the Manx Sword of State, which is popularly said to date to the time of King Olaf the Black (d. 1237), although recent analysis has shown it more likely dates to about the XV century. Another example can be seen on a XIV-century stone cross in the churchyard of Maughold. Another is example is a late XIV-century seal of Sir William le Scrope, Lord of Mann, in which the Manx triskelion is depicted in plate armour, rather than mail. Early representations of the Manx triskelion show the legs running clockwise, and later representations show the legs running in both directions.

The motto is "quocunque jeceris stabit", which is Latin and means: "whichever way you throw, it will stand". The motto dates to the XVII century, where it is first recorded as being present on Manx coinage dating to the year 1668. It is possible that the motto became associated to the Manx triskelion through these coins.

A little more info about Triskelion:

So long as the Kings of Man could write "Rex Manniae et Insularem" (Kingdom of Man and the Isles) after their names the arms were the ship with furled sail; but when the Scots, under their King Alexander, took possession of the Western Islands and also of Man, the three legs were substituted.

"With the toe of one leg they spurn at Ireland,

with the spur of another they kick at Scotland, and

with the third leg they kneel to England."

The legs are all cased in armour, denoting self-defence; the spurs denote speed; while in whatever position they are placed, one of them falls into the attitude of supplication.

The meaning of the symbol is, that if England should have thought of oppressing the island, Ireland and Scotland would have been asked for help; and if either of these two, or both of them combined, should assail the Manx nation, England would be called upon to help and defend them.

The motto is an iambic dimeter - "Quocunque Jeceris Stabit" ("Whichever way you may throw it, it will stand"). Whether this be taken in English or Latin, it very ingeniously agrees, both in sense and style, with the attitude of the legs. The position of the legs cannot be changed in the plain so as to alter their attitude to the three surrounding countries of England, Scotland, and Ireland; and no transposition of the words of the Latin motto will change its sense and meaning.

The occult moral of this emblem presents the instructive parable of "A brave man struggling with fate." The character is constituted by the conjunction of humility, energy, and fortitude. His attitude is that of supplication; but, at the same time, that of activity. He is only on one knee. With one limb he implores assistance; with the other two he serves himself. With the sense of dependence on strength superior to his own, he combines the most strenuous exertion of his own energies; to the modesty of supplication he conjoins the discretion of armour and the activity of the spurs. Whatever lot Providence may apportion to such a man, whatever it will cost him, he will stand.

The insignia of the Island of Sicily, in the Mediterranean, is also three legs, similarly joined together at the thighs, but the legs are bare and naked.

The origin of the very quaint device of the Manx three legs goes back to very old times—times when the Manx people believe that the island was only inhabited by fairies, and everything was carried on in quite a fairylike and supernatural manner, without any aid from mortal men.

Tradition says that the island was enchanted and ruled by a fairy enchanter, who was very jealous at the bare idea of mortals coming to its shores, and so to prevent anyof the sea-rovers from seeing the land when passing in their ships, he caused a blue mist or fog to envelop and hang over it, and thus kept the island out of the sight of all mariners who frequented those seas.

This enchanter had also the power of making one little fairy-man appear like a whole army of big men, and of so frightening away the crews of any vessels that might penetrate the mist and attempt to invade his domains.

One day, however, it so happened that some fishermen were driven by stress of weather through the mist, and, much to their surprise, discovered land where they least expected to find it; but when they did see it, it was so enshrouded in vapour and mist they could hardly discern anything distinctly. They Succeeded, after great difficulty, in getting their small vessel safely on to the beach and landing.

Once on shore, they prepared to make a fire to warm themselves and cook some food. Amid their preparations, they were frightened and astonished on hearing fearful noises, but could not distinguish whence they proceeded. Directly one of the men struck a light with his tinder-box, the fog began to break, and as the fire burned up, so did the clouds and mist commence to roll along and ascend up the sides of what they could now perceive was a mountain. The rolling mist was followed by a curious object that looked like three legs of men, joined together at the thighs, the knees and feet sticking out like the spokes of a wheel. This wonderful object, slowly revolving, followed after the cloud as it rolled up the mountainside, and disappearing, was never seen again from that time to this.

The light of the fire evidently broke the spell of the enchanter’s power, and though the island is often remarked to have a belt of fog and mist hanging about its shores, neither mist nor fog has ever returned so dense again.

An Irishwoman, on first beholding the device of the three legs on the paddle-box of one of the Isle of Man Packet Company’s steamers, on the occasion of her arrival in Liverpool, and being told what they were, exclaimed: "It must be a moighty quare counthry that his ligs for its arums."(

Albert tower

The Albert Tower (on right side of Banknote) on the Isle of Man is a historic monument which is one of Isle of Man's Registered Buildings. It was registered on 27 January 2003 as number 214.

The 45 feet (14 m.) high slate and granite tower was built in 1848 to commemorate the visit of Albert, Prince Consort to the spot in the previous year. It was used as a lookout in World War II and has been closed since.

The tower is located on Lhergy Frissell in the parish of Maughold, but only about 100 metres (330 ft.) south of the boundary with Ramsey and overlooking the town of Ramsey. The base of the tower is at an altitude of about 130 metres (430 ft.). The Tower Bends, an S-curve feature of the Snaefell Mountain Course is nearby and named for it.

It is a location visited by Albert, Prince Consort on 20 September 1847. In 1848 the monument/tower was built, the foundation stone being laid by Mrs Eden who was the wife of Robert Eden, 3rd Baron Auckland the Bishop of Sodor and Man. It was designed by George W. Buck and cost £300 to build.

During World War II it was used as a lookout tower by the Home Guard. After the war access to the tower was stopped because of the poor state of the staircase within the tower.

The granite and marble blue slate tower is 45 feet (14 m.) high. It bears an inscription saying "Erected on the spot where HRH. Prince Albert stood to view Ramsey and its neighbourhood during the visit of Hen Most Gracious Majesty Queen Victoria to Ramsey Bay, the 20th of September, 1847."