Canada starts a new 2oz bullion coin series looking at its old monster legends, with The Kraken
Purveyor of multitudes of bullion coins with a wide mix of designs, this latest release from the Royal Canadian Mint is something a little different from their normal nature-themed designs. Heading firmly into supernatural territory is the first in a new ‘Creatures of the North’ series of two-ounce silver bullion coins, the first of which has the fable Kraken as its subject.
Nothing unusual with the core product, which remains typically RCM in execution. It’s two-ounces in weight, but expends that extra metal over a 1oz coin solely on the thickness rather than an expanded diameter, which remains at 38mm. This seems to be an increasingly favoured style that makes it easier for stackers to store in volume. Even the Germania Mint has embraced the idea with a 10oz coin. The obverse remains the Susanna Blunt effigy of Queen Elizabeth II, sat amidst a radiating ‘sunburst’ pattern, which adds aesthetic appeal and some extra measure of security against counterfeiting. Security is also enhanced with the mints clever patterned maple mark.
The main attraction is obviously the reverse design. Giant squid are not unknown in Canadian waters, and where there are Giant Squid, there are generally legends of sea monsters. Being within the sphere of influence of the old Norse legends, it’s the name ‘Kraken’ that has stuck. A terrific design, clearly heavily influenced by the traditional image of this cephalopod-based legend, it is depicted out of the water and holding a couple of masted ships. The border is quite large in the RCM style, but nevertheless, a fine effort and a good sign of things to come, with a second design due later this year.
Struck in 0.9999 silver, the coin is available now. It can be purchased individually, of course, but also in tubes of 14, or monster (LOL) boxes of 280. Available to order now, it should ship in a couple of weeks time. We’ll hopefully upgrade the images with better ones shortly.
A legend of the Norse Saga’s, the Kraken is a gigantic sea creature with a cephalopod-like body form that is said to dwell off the coasts of Norway and Greenland. Able to take sailors and even ships, it has terrorised sailors for centuries and been the inspiration for many literary works, including such a legend as Jules Verne.
The obvious inspiration for the legend is an actual living creature – the Giant Squid, easily able to exceed 15m in length, with rumours of even larger individuals. It would take the sighting of only one exceptionally large specimen to start a legend that would last through the centuries. Sailors have always had a reputation for a salty tale.
The word ‘Kraken’ derives from Scandinavian languages, specifically the word ‘krake’, which means an unhealthy animal. Ironically, a similar word means ‘octopus’ in German, and is a euphemism for ‘whale’ in Old Swedish.
|DENOMINATION||$10 CAD (Canada)|
|MINTAGE||TBC (unlimited, we believe)|
|BOX / C.O.A.||No / No|
Hey great article! I can’t find anywhere how many of these are being minted. Any idea?
Open mintage, Paul. They’ll make as many as they got orders for through 2020.