One of the most popular themes in modern commemorative coins over the last couple of years has, with little doubt, been the world of ancient mythology. A deep wellspring of fantastical creatures, gods and heroes has given rise to a huge variety of designs. We’ve often said that the genre has one of the highest standards of design and implementation in the market today and Numiscollects new coin does nothing to change that opinion.
Instead of the gods of ancient lore, this new series is called Mythological Animals, and like the NZ mint series, will feature some of the creatures that inhabit and enhance the tales of old. Kicking it all off is one of the more outrageous creatures in the pantheon – the Chimera. Coming from Greek mythology, although like all of these things they can trace their inspiration back much further, this pseudo-lion with elements of other animals incorporated, is one of the most visually striking of them all.
The coin is SmartMinted and struck to an ultra-high relief in two ounces of silver. It’s a powerful looking piece and an outstanding realisation of a Chimera. The design is kept nice and crisp by an uncluttered background, and although it could sit on the ground a little better, is nevertheless a very cool looking coin. Keeping the inscriptions down to just the title and date has certainly helped there.
Issued for Tanzania, that African country has its neat national emblem sitting over much of this face. Just the issuing country name and the denomination is inscribed here. We have to applaud how well the text on the coin is minimised and well placed. It’s annoying how inscriptions can look like such an afterthought on many designs, but not here.
We haven’t seen packaging yet, but it’s unlikely to disappoint and will include a certificate of authenticity. Just 499 of these will be struck and the price seems to be settling at around €200 – not unexpected given the spec and mintage. A great debut to a series that will have to fight for space in a crowded market, but looks more than up to the task. Check out our sponsors to pick one up, but it doesn’t ship until the end of Q1/2018.