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1 Pound Sterling 1916, Kingdom of Great Britain

in Banknotes Book Number: SC202а
Years of issue: 03.08.1916
Signatures: General Manager: Mr. E.G.Galletley, Accountant: Unknown (Handsigned)
Serie: Scotland
Specimen of: 23.09.1914
Material: Cotton fiber
Size (mm): 150 x 130
Printer: Waterlow and Sons Limited, London

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1 Pound Sterling 1916




Repeated Onopordum acanthium (cotton thistle, Scotch thistle), which for more then 500 years already is a national emblem and symbol of Scotland.


1 Pound Sterling 1916

coat of armscoat of arms

The coat of arms of The British Linen bank till 1934 is on top.

There is a whole story with the coat of arms on the banknote!

Two people helped me with the description of the coat of arms - from Russia and the Netherlands, many thanks to them!

coat of armscoat of armscoat of arms

Here is what I received from the Netherlands:

"Interestingly, this is the Scottish version (for use in England, there are English lions in I and IV). And that it is not from the date 1745 as on the note, since the Hanoverian inescutcheon was used only from 1800. Victoria abolished the Hanoverian coat of arms in 1837. He has a crown not on the shield, but on props, so it's hard to say if it's 1800-1816 or 1816- 1837? 1800-1837 - ducal crown, since 1816 - royal crown.

The motto of In Defense is also Scotland."

Description, composed of two coats of arms:

Quadruple shield; in the first and fourth gold, with a scarlet double inner border, flourished and counter-bloomed with scarlet lilies, the quarters are the coat of arms of Scotland: a scarlet rising lion with azure claws and tongue; in the second scarlet quarter, the coat of arms of England: three golden leopards with azure claws and tongues; in the third azure quarter the coat of arms of Ireland: a golden harp with silver strings; the shield is crowned with a gold tournament helmet, crowned in Scots; gold bait, lined with ermine; on a helmet sitting straight scarlet, crowned in Scots, a lion with azure claws and a tongue, holding a state sword with a golden hilt and a silver blade in his right paw, and a golden scepter in his left; above the lion - the motto "In Defens", an abbreviation for "In My Defens God Me Defend", which means "In my protection, God protects me", inscribed in scarlet on a silver ribbon; around the shield is a hoop with garters, inscribed with the motto of the Order in French: "Honi soit qui mal y pense" ("Shame on him who thinks badly of it"); on the left side, a rising silver unicorn with a golden mane, horn, and hooves, crowned in Scots, chained in a golden chain and supporting the banner of Scotland - an azure cloth, beveled on the right and left with a silver St. Andrew's cross, sheathed in gold fringe; on the right - a golden lion leopard with scarlet claws and tongue, crowned in English and supporting the banner of England - a silver panel, dissected and crossed with a scarlet St. George's cross, trimmed with gold fringe; both stand on a green lawn overgrown with roses, thistles and clover; on it is the motto: "Dieu et mon droit", which means "God and my right", inscribed in gold on a silver, with a gold border, a ribbon, lined with gold.

On the left side is the seal of the bank, which is shown, large, on the reverse of the banknote.


1 Pound Sterling 1916

The seal of The British Linen Bank is in the center.

On the seal is Pallas, the goddess of weaving, crowned with the Latin motto "Ditat" ("She enriches").

The ship, in full sail, under the English flag, is an allegory of maritime trade.



This building, photographed in 1933, still stands on Kilmarnock Road, in Giffnock, and is currently a dental practice!

The British Linen Company (later the British Linen Bank) was established in Edinburgh by a royal charter from George II, in 1746. The Company was empowered to carry on the Linen Manufactory in all its branches" and was granted limited liability. The word 'British' in its title was an attempt to deflect the suspicion aroused by all things Scottish, after the Jacobite Rebellion of 1745. Initially, the company was formed to promote the Scottish linen industry but soon developed banking services.

This Scottish bank merged with Bank of Scotland in 1971. (Glasgow City Archives)