Mint XXI Summer ’23: Big Brother has an eye on Lucifer Morningstar, and a dragon watches over an angelic woman

Our last post of the day on Mint XXI’s summer releases covers another trio of some of their finest coins. These three, while having different themes, share common features. All are composed of two-ounces of silver, are antique finished, high-relief, and issued for the African nation of Cameroon, but they’re all very different in style.

What they definitely share is an outstanding level of artistic merit, and having seen a few of their previous issues, a very high quality of strike. We consider this producer one of the best working today, and the selection we’ve looked at today should tell you why. There are more coins in this summer program than we’ve looked at, but these starter posts have chosen the seven for which actual coin images were provided, and we will get around to the others sometime after our holiday.


The second in a series called ‘The Dragonology’, this coin follows the earlier Flaming Wyvern release, itself a beautiful coin. The Starburst Amphithere is a European creation, said to symbolise wisdom and strength, and a common object in heraldic circles. Whatever its origins, it’s a dragon, and dragons are cool – and popular.

Flaming Wyvern set the style for this series, with the dragon shown entwined a beautiful woman, the latter exquisitely highlighted in colour. The same is true here, with the dragon beautifully curved to fill the coin, and the Nymph floating in front of it. A small part of the background is coloured to represent its starburst wing. A really nice looking coin.

The obverse is a common design to the series, and one of the most impressive out there, featuring a reptilian eye. There is a single change, however. The eyeball itself is coloured to match the woman on the reverse face. On the Wyvern coin it was red, here it’s blue, which is a neat tweak hinting at the attention to detail imparted in it.

2,000 Francs CFA (Cameroon) 62.2 g of 0.999 silver 50 mm Antique, colour,high-relief 500


With all these eyeballs today, I’m beginning to think the universe is mocking me, but here we are again. George Orwell’s brilliant dystopian novel, 1984, has provided some inspiration for this Big Brother coin. The whole theme of surveillance has come to the forefront over the last couple of decades, as it’s obvious we are constantly tracked and watched by everything from governments to corporations in the name of protection and profit. I suspect Orwell would have been especially horrified to see just how prescient he was.

The coin concept is brilliant, frankly. The reverse face carries a struck representation of a human eye, meant to symbolise a belief in what you see for yourself. The obverse depicts a camera lens, the implication clear, given how much media is used to manipulate us today. Running through the coin centre is a round hole, simultaneously doing service as a pupil, and as a lens aperture. The fight between what we see with our own eyes, and what is fed to us, is very real, and very timely. We can see this coin resonating with many, especially admirers of Orwell’s chilling novel.

2,000 Francs CFA (Cameroon) 62.2 g of 0.999 silver 55 mm Antique, aperture, high-relief 500


Lucifer Morningstar is also the second coin in a series, and follows a release featuring Chronos. The theme here is duality in the mythological world, making the point that beings can have more than one facet to their nature. Lucifer is a classic example. In Christian mythology, he went from Gods favourite to banishment to hell, a staggering fall from good to evil.

The coin design shows that duality with good to one side and evil to the other, with a sharp change between them. To the left we have that classic image of Lucifer as the Devil, and to the right, in equally classical angelic form. He holds a Morningstar, which has been highlighted with gilding. The common obverse returns, and is a fine design in its own right, also having that central vertical split between light and dark. Yet another excellent release.

2,000 Francs CFA (Cameroon) 62.2 g of 0.999 silver 50 mm Antique, high-relief, gilding 500