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The reign of Queen Elizabeth II saw a departure from the normal practice in issuing gold coinage. A small number of gold £2 pieces were struck in 1953 in order to provide continuity of the series, but the striking was not released to the public, with the result that they are now valued at around £75,000. No further £2 gold pieces were struck until 1980, 9 years after decimalisation, since when they were issued somewhat haphazardly in most years. Coins from 1980 to 1984 use the Arnold Machin effigy of the Queen, while the 1985-1996 coins use the Raphael Maklouf effigy and most later coins use the Ian Rank-Broadley effigy. Until 1993, all these years use the Pistrucci reverse except for 1986 which used a gold version of the circulating Two Pound coin, and 1989 when a completely new design was used to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the first issue of the sovereign coin - the obverse shows the Queen seated on the coronation throne holding the orb and sceptre, with the legend ELIZABETH II DEI GRA REG FID DEF, while the reverse shows a crowned shield within a double rose and the legend ANNIVERSARY OF THE GOLD SOVEREIGN 1489-1989.
"DEI," "GRA," "REGINA," stand for "Dei gratia regina," is a Latin title meaning "By the Grace of God, Queen."
"FID," "DEF," translates to "fidei defensor," it also is a Latin title that translates into "Defender of the Faith" in English.