German coin producer MCI-Mint have debuted a new set of nature coins that start off a new series called Spirit of Africa. The first set of these Burkina Faso issued coins (MCI-Mint has rights to issue for the African nation) feature the world’s largest land animal, the African Elephant. As you’d expect from a producer with a long history of the finish, these are antiqued silver.

The artwork on these five, one-ounce designs is quite unique and unusual. Moving away from a scientifically detailed look, or reproduction of an image, these have a quite sculpted look that’s very distinctive, reflecting their hand-drawn origin. Each coin has some common elements to the design. To the right, curling around the rim is an Umbrella Thorn Acacia, without doubt the most distinctive flora in the African savanna. The date is struck into it. To the left is a circle meant to represent the sun. Radiating from this are rays of light, that quite cleverly wrap around the central artwork differently on every coin. The series title ‘SPIRIT OF AFRICA’ is incorporated into this very effectively. At the bottom is a grassline that grounds the elephants beautifully.

The main design element depicts elephants in different poses, mainly in groups of two or three, although one has a single beast on it. A couple are quite similar, but in general a fine mix for the collector that wants a set, although we’d imagine many might purchase one or two of their favourites as they stand alone well in their own right.

The obverse features the Burkina Faso rearing horses emblem with the issuers name above and the denomination below. It’s a design we’re seeing more of due to MCI. Packaging looks decent. We really like the acrylic display frames, although the metal studs on the MCI one aren’t as subtle as the fine ones popularised by the NZ Mint. The image in them, along with a sixth for a silver medallion that will round out the series, will join together to form one larger picture. Each coin comes with a CoA and a box in a coloured shipper. Best of all, there are only 499 of each design being minted. Selling for €89.00 each, these are very distinctive coins which we think will have great appeal.



If you fly over the african savannah in the light of the red morning sun there may be no more majestic a sight than a herd of Elephants walking measuredly through the high grass. The Elephant is the epitome of the african spirit. A wise and emotional animal, peaceful and in search for harmony, but warlike and even deadly when attacked, a strong animal and one of exceptional beauty, the Elephant is truely one of the most remarkable animals of african fauna. Many old and modern legends entwine themselves around him, and it is a pity that this animal, equipped with intelligence and such a complex personality, became the high prized pray of hunters and poachers. Let us hope that Elephants will remain the soul of the african savannahs also in the future, that our kids and grandkids not have to miss their beautiful sight when they are grown up. The Elephant shall forever be the living symbol of free and wild Africa.

The first coins under the Spirit of Africa label form a 5 pieces set of Elephant motifs. One can see the original hand drawings which were the basis for the engravings on the certificates. Every coin is encapsuled inside an acrylic box which is colorful printed. Together with a sixth piece – a silver medal coming soon – the acrylic boxes itself, puzzled together, form a picture of african landscape.






1000 FRANCS CFA 0.999 SILVER 31.1 g 38.61 mm ANTIQUE  499 YES / YES