Coin producers continue to be more adventurous when it comes to designs, and none more so than the increasingly popular dimensional format. Coins that are not just shaped for a subject in outline, but also with high-relief, sometimes on both faces, are a growing niche and recent issues have shown some great imagination and technical ability.
Joining the selection is Hong Kong based LPM, who today release the first in an intriguing new range called simply ‘Ancient Warrrior’. Unlike todays militaries, different classes of fighters of old differentiated themselves far more intensely than a simple change in symbolic decoration (stars, stripes, bands, etc.). Some of the embellishments and even practical decorations of ancient warriors in particular, have become iconic, so what better subject for a series like this than bringing some of them back to life in precious metal?
There’s a huge choice for a first issue, including the Spartan and Corinthian helmets of Ancient Greece, the Galea of Ancient Rome, the medieval Great Helm, and tons more, but it’s hard to argue with the Samurai warriors headgear of choice, the Kabuto. The Kabuto reached its peak of extravagance in the medieval period, but in over a millennium of usage, styles varied widely. The image below right is of a Do Maru Kabuto from the Edo period in the 19th century, but modelled in a medieval revival style (Courtesy Tokyo National Museum). The coin clearly has similar inspiration.