Legendary novelist Jane Austen will join the ranks of eminent Britons emblazoned on a banknote issued by the Bank of England. Austen’s image will appear on a new £10 note, which is expected to be issued by 2017. Elements of the bill that will be of interest to Austenites include:
Austen of course isn’t the only woman to grace a Bank of England banknote. There’s, of course, Queen Elizabeth II. Oh, and there’s also Elizabeth Fry, a social reformer active in aiding women prisoners in the early 19th century. But the vast majority of the faces that figure on Bank of England currency are old, scowling men.
That’s not to say there’s no diversity. Some are pudgy scowlers. Others have wigs. Still others, bushy eyebrows. But even so, seems that the Old Lady of Threadneedle Street is making a push to better reflect the breadth of Britons when it comes to the historical figures it deems worthy of bestowal upon a bill. “In order to ensure that our notes represent the full diversity of British people, the Bank has decided to review the approach to, and criteria for, selecting characters to appear on banknotes,” the bank said in announcement on Austen.