Prince William and Catherine Middleton continued the 88 year tradition of the British monarchy to use a royal wedding ring made of rare Welsh gold.
Ironically, it was this month 12 years ago, May 1999, when Gordon Brown sold half of Britain's gold reserves at rock bottom prices, squandering many billions of the national wealth. The gold price was at around $250 per pound, and started its constant and stellar rise right after 400 tonnes of the British gold reserves were gone, climbing to a new all-time record of $1566 per ounce at the day of the royal wedding. More than six times as high as 10 years earlier!
The proceeds of selling the British gold between 1999 and 2002 amounted to $3.5 billion. Selling the same amount today would therefore have resulted in over $21 billion - no wonder that British people and media were angry at Gordon Brown even a decade later!
The second ironic coincidence is that the last gold mine in Britain, Dolgellau in north Wales, closed in the same year of 1999. The mine was the last source of Welsh gold which is famous for its use in the royal wedding rings.
Welsh gold has been used in royal weddings since 1923 and has been worn by Queen Elizabeth II, and the late Princess Diana.
The gold for this years weeding ring was given to Prince William by Queen Elizabeth II shortly after his engagement to Middleton was announced in November 2010.
Traditionally, gold from a nugget from the Clogau Gold mine was used, but this mine too has been closed for a long time already.
But since gold is not used up and doesn't rust - it is known as the eternal metal after all - there are some reserves left and stashed away at unknown places. The British Royal Legion gave the queen a small quantity of Welsh gold in the 1980s for incorporation into wedding rings, and this gold was used for Middleton's ring.
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