Blood of Elves, the third book in The Witcher saga, hits the numismatic world with a silver coin pair

Working their way through the literary works of Polish fantasy author, Andrzej Sapkowski, the Mint of Gdańsk has now debuted their third pair of coins, quite obviously for the third book of the eight published in the Witcher saga, ‘The Blood of Elves’. As before, there are two silver coins in the range, one of the classic two-ounces in weight, the other in the considerably rarer one-kilo format.

Each of the two coins carries quite distinct artwork from the other, so this isn’t simply a case of one being a scaled up version of the other. The two-ounce coin is said to depict ‘an attack of Scoia’tael commando group on a dwarven caravan, which Geralt and Ciri were travelling’. There are a few ‘splashes’ of blood, highlighted with the use of red gold. These coins always have an insert meant to act as a focal point for the coin, and in this case it’s a hardwood wagon wheel. Wood is actually a good choice in combination with antiqued gold – they go well together. The obverse is particularly pretty, full of symbolism from the books, and replete with fine detailing.

The 100 mm diameter kilo coin shows a ‘scene of Ciri’s training in Kaer Morhen. She was training on a “pendulum” – this was an obstacle course on which all witchers trained.’ Ironically, this was a scene recently shown in the hit Netflix TV series, so should be familiar to anyone that’s seen it. The focal point here remains a piece of agate, in this case red, and formed into a castle window. The obverse shows us the Witcher’s stronghold, and the agate that formed a window on the reverse, forms a door here.

An interesting series for the fan, the two-ounce coin is obviously the more affordable, so the fact they’ve done a good job with it, should help ensure popularity. The kilo coin also looks well done. These are very much aimed at fans of the books. The scenes aren’t universally known, like a Greek myth, for example, so you’d need to have some knowledge to appreciate what’s being depicted. Fortunately, the Witcher universe is having a bit of a renaissance at the moment, and the coin releases are well-timed in that regard. Both are well presented, and available to pre-order right now.


The stories are set on an unnamed Continent, which was settled several thousand years earlier by elves from overseas. When they arrived, the elves encountered gnomes and dwarves. After a period of war between the elves and dwarves, the dwarves retreated into the mountains and the elves settled in the plains and forests. Human colonists arrived about five hundred years before the events in the stories, igniting a series of wars. The humans were victorious, and became dominant; the non-human races, now considered second-class citizens, often live in small ghettos within human settlements. Those not confined to the ghettos live in wilderness regions not yet claimed by humans. Other races on the Continent are halflings and dryads; werewolves and vampires appeared after a magical event, known as the Conjunction of the Spheres.

During the centuries preceding the stories, most of the Continent’s southern regions have been taken over by the Nilfgaard Empire; the north belongs to the fragmented Northern Kingdoms. The Witcher saga takes place in the aftermath of the first major war between the Nilfgaard Empire and the Northern Kingdoms, with a second war beginning in the middle of the series.

The Continent can be divided into four regions. The Northern Kingdoms (where most of the saga takes place) consists of Aedirn, Cidaris, Cintra, Hengfors League, Kaedwen, Kerack, Kovir and Poviss, Lyria and Rivia, Redania, Temeria and Verden and several minor duchies and principalities such as Bremervoord or Ellander. The Nilfgaard Empire occupies most of the area south of the Northern Kingdoms. The eastern part of the Continent, such as the Korath desert, Zerrikania, Hakland and the Fiery Mountains, is mostly unknown. The book series mentions overseas countries with whom the Northern Kingdoms trade, including Zangvebar, Ofir, Hannu and Barsa. (Wikipedia)


The Witcher short stories by the author Andrzej Sapkowski were first published in Polish science fiction and fantasy magazine Fantastyka, beginning in the mid-1980s. The first short story, “Wiedźmin” (“The Witcher”) (1986), was written for a contest held by the magazine and won third place. The series has ‘concluded’ with the publication of the sixth novel in the saga, although that isn’tt including the earlier short story compilations, The Last Wish, and the Sword of Destiny.

The novels became more widely known throughout the rest of the world after the story was used for an officially licenced video-game series by Polish company CD Projekt, the latest of which, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, is widely considered to be one of the greatest video games of all time, certainly in its genre. Released in 2015, it has shipped over 20 million copies across multiple formats since then.

There were a couple of Polish TV shows based around the books, but neither were much liked by the author, Andrzej Sapkowski. The thing that has propelled the franchise into worldwide popularity, is Netflix pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into a TV series starring Superman himself, Henry Cavill in the lead role. Now two seasons old, it’s earned a respectable following, further enhancing the fanbase for these much loved novels.

DENOMINATION $5 NZD (Niue) $50 NZD (Niue)
COMPOSITION 0.999 silver 0.999 silver
WEIGHT 62.2 grams 1000.00 grams
DIMENSIONS 45.0 mm 100.0 mm
FINISH Antique Antique
MODIFICATIONS High-relief, gilding, Wood insert High-relief, Agate
MINTAGE 2,000 200
BOX / C.O.A. Yes / Yes Yes / Yes