Born in 1874 in Italy, Marconi studied physics and developed an interest in how radio waves worked. He started by sending radio waves over short distances of only a mile or two, but soon developed it further. In 1899, he succeeded in sending a signal across the English Channel, but it was the success of sending a signal from England to Canada in 1901 that earned him worldwide fame. There was still a lot to learn about the rules and characteristics of radio waves, but Marconi had proven to many, that it was possible to transmit radio waves over such long distances.
The reverse of this £2 coin, designed by Robert Evans, depicts a pattern of radio waves, spreading out from the source on the left. There is also a spark between the zeroes of the date indicating how radio waves are produced. The obverse by Ian Rank-Broadley features the 4th portrait of the Queen. The edge inscription states “WIRELESS BRIDGES THE ATLANTIC…MARCONI 1901”.