Sir Rowland Hill, KCB, FRS was an English teacher and social reformer. He campaigned for a comprehensive reform of the postal system, based on the concept of Uniform Penny Post and his solution of prepayment, facilitating the safe and cheap transfer of letters. Hill served as a government postal official, he is credited with originating the basic concepts of the modern postal service, including the invention of the postage stamp. Hill was born in Blackwell Street, Worcestershire, England. Rowland's father, Thomas Wright Hill, was an innovator in education and politics, including among his friends Joseph Priestley, Tom Paine and Richard Price. At the age of 12, Rowland became a student-teacher in his father's school, he earned extra money fixing scientific instruments. He worked at the Assay Office in Birmingham and painted landscapes in his spare time. In 1819 he moved his father's school "Hill Top" from central Birmingham, establishing the Hazelwood School at Edgbaston, an affluent neighbourhood of Birmingham, as an "educational refraction of Priestley's ideas".
Hazelwood was to provide a model for public education for the emerging middle classes, aiming for useful, pupil-centred education which would give sufficient knowledge and understanding to allow a student to continue self-education through a life "most useful to society and most happy to himself". The school, which Hill designed, included innovations such as a science laboratory, a swimming pool, forced air heating. In his Plans for the Government and Liberal Instruction of Boys in Large Numbers Drawn from Experience he argued that kindness, instead of caning, moral influence, rather than fear, should be the predominant forces in school discipline. Science was to be a compulsory subject, students were to be self-governing. Hazelwood gained international attention when French education leader and editor Marc Antoine Jullien, former secretary to Maximilien de Robespierre and wrote about the school in the June 1823 issue of his journal Revue encyclopédique. Jullien transferred his son there. Hazelwood so impressed Jeremy Bentham that in 1827 a branch of the school was created at Bruce Castle in Tottenham, London.
In 1833, the original Hazelwood School closed and its educational system was continued at the new Bruce Castle School, of which Hill was head master from 1827 until 1839. The colonisation of South Australia was a project of Edward Gibbon Wakefield, who believed that many of the social problems in Britain were caused by overcrowding and overpopulation. In 1832 Rowland Hill published a tract called Home colonies: sketch of a plan for the gradual extinction of pauperism, for the diminution of crime, based on a Dutch model. Hill served from 1833 until 1839 as secretary of the South Australian Colonization Commission, which worked to establish a settlement without convicts at what is today Adelaide; the political economist Robert Torrens was chairman of the Commission. Under the South Australia Act 1834, the colony was to embody the ideals and best qualities of British society, shaped by religious freedom and a commitment to social progress and civil liberties. Rowland Hill's sister Caroline Clark, husband Francis and their large family migrated to South Australia in 1850.
Rowland Hill first started to take a serious interest in postal reforms in 1835. In 1836 Robert Wallace, MP, provided Hill with numerous books and documents, which Hill described as a "half hundred weight of material". Hill commenced a detailed study of these documents and this led him to publish, in early 1837, a pamphlet called Post Office Reform its Importance and Practicability, he submitted a copy of this to the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Thomas Spring Rice, on 4 January 1837. This first edition was marked "confidential" and was not released to the general public; the Chancellor summoned Hill to a meeting in which the Chancellor suggested improvements, asked for reconsiderations and requested a supplement, which Hill duly produced and supplied on 28 January 1837. In the 1830s at least 12.5% of all British mail was conveyed under the personal frank of peers and members of parliament, while censorship and political espionage were conducted by postal officials. Fundamentally, the postal system was mismanaged, wasteful and slow.
It had become inadequate for the needs of industrial nation. There is a well-known story apocryphal, about how Hill gained an interest in reforming the postal system. At that time, letters were paid for by the recipient, not the sender; the recipient could refuse delivery. Frauds were commonplace: for example, coded information could appear on the cover of the letter; each individual letter had to be logged. In addition, postal rates were complex, depending on the distance and the number of sheets in the letter. Richard Cobden and John Ramsey McCulloch, both advocates of free trade, attacked the policies of privilege and protection of the Tory government. McCulloch, in 1833, advanced the view that "nothing contributes more to facilitate commerce than the safe and cheap conveyance of letters." Hill's pamphlet, Post Office Reform: its Importance and Practicability, referred to above, was circulated in 1837. The report called for "uniform rates" according to weight, rather than distance. Hill's study reported his findings and those of Charles Babbage that most of the costs in the postal system were not for transport, but rath
A penny is a coin or a unit of currency in various countries. Borrowed from the Carolingian denarius, it is the smallest denomination within a currency system. Presently, it is the formal name of the British penny and the informal name of one American cent as well as the informal Irish designation of 1 cent euro coin, it is the informal name of the cent unit of account in Canada, although one cent coins are no longer minted there. The name is used in reference to various historical currencies derived from the Carolingian system, such as the French denier and the German pfennig, it may be informally used to refer to any similar smallest-denomination coin, such as the euro cent or Chinese fen. The Carolingian penny was a.940-fine silver coin weighing 1/240 pound. It was adopted by Offa of Mercia and other English kings and remained the principal currency in Europe over the next few centuries until repeated debasements necessitated the development of more valuable coins; the British penny remained a silver coin until the expense of the Napoleonic Wars prompted the use of base metals in 1797.
Despite the decimalization of currencies in the United States and throughout the British Commonwealth, the name remains in informal use. No penny is formally subdivided, although farthings and half cents have been minted and the mill remains in use as a unit of account in some contexts. Penny is first attested in a 1394 Scots text, a variant of Old English peni, a development of numerous variations including pennig and pending; the etymology of the term "penny" is uncertain, although cognates are common across all Germanic languages and suggest a base *pan-, *pann-, or *pand- with the individualizing suffix -ing. Common suggestions include that it was *panding as a Low Franconian form of Old High German pfant "pawn", it has been proposed that it may represent an early borrowing of Punic pn, as the face of Carthaginian goddess Tanit was represented on nearly all Carthaginian currency. Following decimalization, the British and Irish coins were marked "new penny" until 1982 and 1985, respectively.
The regular plural pennies fell out of use in England from the 16th century, except in reference to coins considered individually. It remains common in Scottish English and is standard for all senses in American English, however, the informal "penny" is only used of the coins in any case, values being expressed in "cents"; the informal name for the American cent seems to have spread from New York State. In British English, prior to decimalization, values from two to eleven pence and of twenty pence are written and spoken as a single word, as twopence or tuppence, threepence or thruppence, &c. Where a single coin represented a number of pence, it was treated as a single noun, as a sixpence or two eightpences. Thus, "a threepence" would be single coin of that value whereas "three pence" would be its value and "three pennies" would be three penny coins. In British English, divisions of a penny were added to such combinations without a conjunction, as sixpence-farthing, such constructions were treated as single nouns.
Adjectival use of such coins used the ending -penny, as sixpenny. The British abbreviation d. derived from the Latin denarius. It followed the amount after a space, it has been replaced since decimalization by p written without a space or period. From this abbreviation, it is common to speak of pennies and values in pence as "p". In North America, it is common to abbreviate cents with the currency symbol ¢. Elsewhere, it is written with a simple c; the medieval silver penny was modeled on similar coins in antiquity, such as the Greek drachma, the Carthaginian shekel, the Roman denarius. Forms of these seem to have reached as far as Sweden; the use of Roman currency in Britain seems to have fallen off after the Roman withdrawal and subsequent Saxon invasions. Charlemagne's father Pepin the Short instituted a major currency reform around AD 755, aiming to reorganise Francia's previous silver standard with a standardized.940-fine denier weighing 1⁄240 pound. Around 790, Charlemagne introduced a new.950 or.960-fine penny with a smaller diameter.
Surviving specimens have an average weight of 1.70 grams, although some estimate the original ideal mass at 1.76 grams. Despite the purity and quality of these pennies, they were rejected by traders throughout the Carolingian period in favor of the gold coins used elsewhere, a situation that led to repeated legislation against such refusal to accept the king's currency; some of the Anglo-Saxons kingdoms copied the solidus, the late Roman gold coin. Around AD 641–670, there seems to have been a movement to use coins with a lower gold content; this decreased their value and may have increased the number that could be minted, but these paler coins do not seem to have solved the problem of the value and scarcity of the currency
£sd is the popular name for the pre-decimal currencies once common throughout Europe in the British Isles and hence in several countries of the British Empire and subsequently the Commonwealth. The abbreviation originates from the Latin currency denominations librae and denarii. In the United Kingdom, one of the last to abandon the system, these were referred to as pounds and pence; this system originated in the classical Roman Empire. It was re-introduced into Western Europe by Charlemagne, was the standard for many centuries across the continent. In Britain, it was King Offa of Mercia who adopted the Frankish silver standard of librae and denarii in the late 8th century, the system was used in much of the British Commonwealth until the 1960s and 1970s, with Nigeria being the last to abandon it in the form of the Nigerian pound on 1 January 1973. Under this system, there were 20 shillings, or 240 pence, in a pound; the penny was subdivided into 4 farthings until 31 December 1960, when they ceased to be legal tender in the UK, until 31 July 1969 there were halfpennies in circulation.
The advantage of such a system was its use in mental arithmetic, as it afforded many factors and hence fractions of a pound such as tenths, eighths and sevenths and ninths if the guinea was used. When dealing with items in dozens and division are straightforward; as countries of the British Empire became independent, some abandoned the £sd system while others retained it as long as the UK itself. Australia, for example, only changed to using a decimal currency on 14 February 1966. Still others, notably Ireland, decimalised only; the UK abandoned the old penny on Decimal Day, 15 February 1971, when one pound sterling became divided into 100 new pence. This was a change from the system used in the earlier wave of decimalisations in Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, in which the pound was replaced with a new major currency called either the "dollar" or the "rand"; the British shilling was replaced by a 5 new pence coin worth one-twentieth of a pound. For much of the 20th century, £sd was the monetary system of most of the Commonwealth countries, the major exceptions being Canada and India.
Similar systems based on Roman coinage were used elsewhere. In the classical Roman Empire, standard coinage was established to facilitate business transactions. 12 denarii were rated equal to 1 gold solidus – a 4th-century Roman coin, rare but which still circulated. Following the collapse of the Western Roman Empire, new currencies were introduced in Western Europe though Roman currencies remained popular. In the Eastern Roman Empire, the currencies evolved away from the solidi and denarii. In the eighth century, Charlemagne re-introduced and refined the system by decreeing that the money of the Holy Roman Empire should be the silver denarius, containing 22.5 grains of silver. As in the old Roman Empire, this had the advantage that any quantity of money could be determined by counting coins rather than by weighing silver or gold. Different monetary systems based on units in ratio 20:1 & 12:1 were used in Europe in medieval times; the English name pound is a Germanic adaptation of the Latin phrase libra pondo'a pound weight'.
There were several ways to represent amounts of money in writing and speech, with no formal convention. Spoken, unless there was cause to be punctilious, "two pound and six". Whether "pound" or "pounds" was used depended upon the speaker, varying with class and context. 1/–, colloquially "a bob". 11d. 1 1⁄2d. As spoken, the lf in halfpenny and halfpence was always silent. 3d, with reference to the above, this became thruppence referred to as a "threepenny bit". 6d known as half a shilling. 2/– 2/6 4/3 5/– £1.10s.– £1/19/11 3⁄4d. £14.8s.2d Halfpennies and farthings were represented by the appropriate symbol after the whole p
London is the capital and largest city of both England and the United Kingdom. Standing on the River Thames in the south-east of England, at the head of its 50-mile estuary leading to the North Sea, London has been a major settlement for two millennia. Londinium was founded by the Romans; the City of London, London's ancient core − an area of just 1.12 square miles and colloquially known as the Square Mile − retains boundaries that follow its medieval limits. The City of Westminster is an Inner London borough holding city status. Greater London is governed by the Mayor of the London Assembly. London is considered to be one of the world's most important global cities and has been termed the world's most powerful, most desirable, most influential, most visited, most expensive, sustainable, most investment friendly, most popular for work, the most vegetarian friendly city in the world. London exerts a considerable impact upon the arts, education, fashion, healthcare, professional services and development, tourism and transportation.
London ranks 26 out of 300 major cities for economic performance. It is one of the largest financial centres and has either the fifth or sixth largest metropolitan area GDP, it is the most-visited city as measured by international arrivals and has the busiest city airport system as measured by passenger traffic. It is the leading investment destination, hosting more international retailers and ultra high-net-worth individuals than any other city. London's universities form the largest concentration of higher education institutes in Europe. In 2012, London became the first city to have hosted three modern Summer Olympic Games. London has a diverse range of people and cultures, more than 300 languages are spoken in the region, its estimated mid-2016 municipal population was 8,787,892, the most populous of any city in the European Union and accounting for 13.4% of the UK population. London's urban area is the second most populous in the EU, after Paris, with 9,787,426 inhabitants at the 2011 census.
The population within the London commuter belt is the most populous in the EU with 14,040,163 inhabitants in 2016. London was the world's most populous city from c. 1831 to 1925. London contains four World Heritage Sites: the Tower of London. Other landmarks include Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, Piccadilly Circus, St Paul's Cathedral, Tower Bridge, Trafalgar Square and The Shard. London has numerous museums, galleries and sporting events; these include the British Museum, National Gallery, Natural History Museum, Tate Modern, British Library and West End theatres. The London Underground is the oldest underground railway network in the world. "London" is an ancient name, attested in the first century AD in the Latinised form Londinium. Over the years, the name has attracted many mythicising explanations; the earliest attested appears in Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae, written around 1136. This had it that the name originated from a supposed King Lud, who had taken over the city and named it Kaerlud.
Modern scientific analyses of the name must account for the origins of the different forms found in early sources Latin, Old English, Welsh, with reference to the known developments over time of sounds in those different languages. It is agreed; this was adapted into Latin as Londinium and borrowed into Old English, the ancestor-language of English. The toponymy of the Common Brythonic form is much debated. A prominent explanation was Richard Coates's 1998 argument that the name derived from pre-Celtic Old European *lowonida, meaning "river too wide to ford". Coates suggested that this was a name given to the part of the River Thames which flows through London. However, most work has accepted a Celtic origin for the name, recent studies have favoured an explanation along the lines of a Celtic derivative of a proto-Indo-European root *lendh-, combined with the Celtic suffix *-injo- or *-onjo-. Peter Schrijver has suggested, on these grounds, that the name meant'place that floods'; until 1889, the name "London" applied to the City of London, but since it has referred to the County of London and Greater London.
"London" is sometimes written informally as "LDN". In 1993, the remains of a Bronze Age bridge were found on the south foreshore, upstream of Vauxhall Bridge; this bridge either reached a now lost island in it. Two of those timbers were radiocarbon dated to between 1750 BC and 1285 BC. In 2010 the foundations of a large timber structure, dated to between 4800 BC and 4500 BC, were found on the Thames's south foreshore, downstream of Vauxhall Bridge; the function of the mesolithic structure is not known. Both structures are on the south bank. Although there is evidence of scattered Brythonic settlements in the area, the first major settlement was founded by the Romans about four years after the invasion
Postage stamps and postal history of Great Britain
Postage stamps and postal history of Great Britain surveys postal history from the United Kingdom and the postage stamps issued by that country and its various historical territories until the present day. The postal history of the United Kingdom is notable in at least two respects- first, for the introduction of postage stamps in 1840, secondly for the establishment of an efficient postal system throughout the British Empire, laying the foundation of many national systems still in existence today; the story begins in the 12th century with Henry I, who appointed messengers to carry letters for the government. It is estimated that between 1135, 4,500 letters were carried by these messengers. During this time, private individuals had to make their own arrangements. Henry III provided uniforms for the messengers, Edward I instituted posting houses where the messengers could change horses; the reign of Edward II saw the first postal marking. Henry VIII created the Royal Mail in 1516, appointing Brian Tuke as "Master of the Postes", while Elizabeth I appointed Thomas Randolph as "Chief Postmaster".
Under Thomas Witherings, chief postmaster under Charles I, the Royal Mail was made available to the public, with a regular system of post roads and staff. From this time through to the postal reforms of 1839 – 1840 it was most common for the recipient to pay the postage, although it was possible to prepay the charge at the time of sending. In 1661, Charles II made Henry Bishop the first Postmaster General. In answer to customer complaints about delayed letters, Bishop introduced the Bishop mark, a small circle with month and day inside, applied at London, in the General Post office and the Foreign section, soon after adopted in Scotland, Ireland. In subsequent years, the postal system expanded from six roads to a network covering the country, post offices were set up in both large and small towns, each of which had its own postmark. In 1680 William Dockwra established the London Penny Post, a mail delivery system that delivered letters and parcels weighing up to one pound within the city of London and some of its immediate suburbs for the sum of one penny.
The Great Post Office Reform of 1839 and 1840 was championed by Rowland Hill credited with the invention of the postage stamp, as a way to reverse the steady financial losses of the Post Office. Hill convinced Parliament to adopt the Uniform Fourpenny Post whereby a flat 4d per half ounce rate was charged regardless of distance. December 1839-letters could arrive at any address in the United Kingdom: The rate went into effect on 5 December 1839 but only lasted for 36 days; this was successful, on 10 January 1840 the Uniform Penny Post started, charging only 1d for prepaid letters and 2d if the fee was collected from the recipient. Fixed rates meant that it was practical to avoid handling money to send a letter by using an "adhesive label", accordingly, on 6 May, the Penny Black became the world's first postage stamp in use. After more than 2,000 suggestions were submitted, Rowland Hill chose the method and printer, worked by trial and error to achieve the required result, he decided to go with Perkins, Bacon & Petch, "a firm of bank-note printers, to carry out the work by the process of steel engraving, the head of the Queen as engraved by William Wyon for a special medal struck to celebrate Her Majesty's official visit to the City of London in the year of her Coronation."The stamp was for use only within the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and as such was, in effect, a local stamp.
For this reason the name of the country was not included within the design, a situation which continued by agreement with foreign post offices, provided the sovereign's effigy appeared on the stamp. Envelopes sold with postage paid did not include this. In 1951, the special commemorative issue for the Festival of Britain included the name "Britain" incidentally, it could therefore be said that the name of the country appeared for the first time on a stamp of the UK, although the word "British" had appeared on British Empire Exhibition commemorative stamps of 1924. After the stamp was circulating, it became obvious that black was not a good choice of stamp colour, since any cancellation marks were hard to see. So from 1841 onwards, the stamps were printed in a brick-red colour; the Penny Reds continued in use for decades with about 21 billion being produced. The Victorian age saw an explosion of experimentation; the inefficiency of using scissors to cut stamps from the sheet inspired trials with rouletting, with perforation, which became standard practice in 1854.
In 1847, the 1 shilling became the first of the British embossed postage stamps to be issued, followed by 10d stamps the following year, 6d values in 1854. Surface-printed stamps first appeared in the form of a 4d stamp in 1855, printed by De La Rue, subsequently became the standard type. 1⁄2 d and 1 1⁄2 d engraved stamps issued in 1870. Surface-printed stamps of the 1860s and 1870s all used the same profile of Victoria, but a variety of frames and corner lettering. A 5-shilling stamp first appeared in 1867, followed by 10 shilling and £1 values in 1878, culminating in a £5 stamp in 1882. Meanwhile, the age of the Penny Reds had come to an end along with the Perkins Bacon printing contract; the new low values were surface-printed: first was a penny stamp coloure