The newest of the mythologically themed coin series emanating from Numiscollect, ‘Asian Mythology’ taps into the growing interest in the regions aged history. Launching last year with a fine Zhong Kui effort, we’ve been eagerly awaiting the second. He is the Chinese Military god of wealth and the Caishen of the centre (one of nine, apparently, but the whole mythos is a convoluted maze, well above my pay-grade).
Whatever the origin and subsequent story, he likes the shiny stuff and is a regular fixture in Lunar New Year celebrations. He is often depicted with a black tiger, clearly shown on the coin reverse, and holding a golden rod that functions like an alchemy pointy-stick, able to turn stone into gold. His grizzled visage is depicted very well on the reverse face, the golden rod in one hand and a pot of gold, perhaps, in the other. The foreground is filled with the traditional, and highly distinctive, Chinese coins with their square hole in the centre.
The tiger carries black colouring and their are three gilded elements in play, but the overall coin is done with an antique-finish, including the obverse with its effigy of Queen Elizabeth II by Ian Rank Broadley. Last year, the coin came in coloured and coloured & gilded versions, but there is sensibly just a single variant of this three ounce silver, high-relief coin for 2021.
The mintage remains at 333 pieces, so 99 fewer than the combined pair of Zhong Kui coins, although they were issued as a 2019 and a 2020, thus explaining the jump to 2021 here. Boxed with a Certificate of Authenticity, this nice release will be available to pre-order from today , with shipping commencing in February next year unless the coronavirus has anything to say about it. The coin has been added to our expansive Thematic guide to Numiscollects various mythological series.