Thursday, December 6, 2007

A New Elizabethan Age ~ 1953 Coronation Ads

The Coronation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on June 2nd, 1953 was celebrated not only in the United Kingdom, but around the globe. Advertisers took advantage of the occasion to ma
rk this important milestone, and to impress consumers with their loyalty and longtime contributions to the British wealth! A sampling of ads appearing the week of Elizabeth's Coronation follows...

▫ Coty Perfume ▫

"See the chariot at hand here of love
Wherein my lady rideth!

Each that draws is a swan or a dove

And well the car love guideth.

As she goes, all hearts do duty
Unto her beauty;

And enamoured do wish so they might

But enjoy such a sight,

Though they still were to run by her side,

Through swords, through seas, whither she would ride."

▫ Huntley & Palmers Biscuits ▫

This beautiful image of the interior of Westminster Abbey was published by Huntley & Palmers, a British firm of biscuit makers based in Reading, Berkshire. English 'biscuits' are known to Americans as 'cookies.' The company created one of the World's first global brands and ran what was once the world’s largest biscuit factory. Over the years, the company was also known as J. Huntley & Son and Huntley & Palmer. A business of the same name has recently been re-established in Sudbury in Suffolk. The gold seal in the top left reads: 'Loyal Greetings to HM Queen Elizabeth II' Purchase

▫ Ford Zephyr ▫

The Ford Zephyr was manufactured by the Ford Motor Company in the United Kingdom. The Zephyr and its luxury variant, the Zephyr Zodiac which appeared in 1955, were the largest passenger cars in the British Ford range from 1950 to 1971 before being replaced by a larger Ford Consul and Granada. This elegant ad entitled 'Ford Sets the Fashion' featured an evening gown designed by Ronald Paterson. Note the Royal Warrant of Appointment by the late King George VI prominently advertised in the upper left. Many of the ads featured here display such Warrants. See detailed examples below. Purchase

▫ Guerlain Perfume▫

Guerlain Fragrances, one of the oldest perfume houses in the world, was founded by designer Pierre-François Pascal Guerlain in Paris in 1828. Through the years Guerlain employed some of the world's top artists to design their bottles, as well as their advertising art. This stunning ad features a representation of the Guerlain perfume distillery on the Champs~ Élysées in 1840, with horse-drawn carriage heading toward l'Arc de Triomphe in the background. Though the ad does not specifically reference the Coronation, the carriage ride through Paris is vaguely reminiscent of the Queen's journey through London to Her Coronation ceremony. Purchase

▫ Booth's Dry Gin ▫

Booth's Gin is a popular brand of London dry gin, founded by the Booth family circa 1740. The distinctive bottle still boasts the Red Lion, a reference to the distillery where the beverage was originally produced. This regal ad expressed the optimism of a new era and a new Monarch...

"May the generous hope of peace and prosperity be the dominating note of Her reign!"


▫ Harrods ▫

The famous Harrods department store in London occupies more than one million square feet of floor space in some 300+ departments, making it one of the largest department stores in the world. The Harrods Group encompasses other enterprises including Harrods Bank, Harrods Estates, Harrods Casino, Harrods Aviation, and Air Harrods.

This enchanting ad from Elizabeth’s 1953 Coronation features a tapestry embroidered with historical landmarks from the British Empire… including the defeat of the Spanish Armada, and Drake’s Knighting. Purchase

▫ Daimler & Lanchester Motor Cars ▫

Lanchester Motor Company was a car manufacturer located at Armourer Mills in Great Britain from 1895-1956. Frederick Lanchester was one of the most influential automotive engineers of the 19th and 20th centuries. After merging with Daimler Motors in 1931, the Lanchester continued to produce popular cars until 1956, when the last model, the Sprite, was built. This colorful ad featuring British explorers trading with native peoples declared that 'Daimler skill goes on… into a New Elizabethan Era.' Unfortunately that new era quickly brought about the demise of the Lanchester automobile.

▫ Royal Warrants of Appointment ▫

Below are three examples of Royal Warrants displayed in several advertisements here. Royal Warrants are issued to companies who provide goods to the Royal family, and lends prestige to those holding the Warrant. From left to right: The Warrants of the Daimler Motor Company, Booths Gin Distillery, and Huntley & Palmers Biscuits, all issued by the late King George VI.

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Most of the ads featured here, and many others, are available for purchase at 20th Century Art.