While the Perth Mint spends much of its time issuing upmarket variants of its iconic bullion range (gilded, coloured, proof, etc.), and simple coloured proof coins, it does like to push the envelope now and then. You could argue that the current darling of the coin world – the 2oz high relief antiqued mythology theme – was kickstarted by the mint with its Zeus coin half a decade ago. They haven’t given up on the format, but have employed it in what can only be described as the most eclectic series in modern coins today.
We’ve already seen a thermometer, a compass, a clock, a Yin Yang, a pearl and others set into the middle of issues in this range, but the latest release is a subtle nod back to the formats ancient mythology roots. Ancient Egypt is a pretty popular subject these days and it’s hardly surprising given it was a civilisation replete with striking imagery and a rich breeding ground for coin ideas. In other words, an obvious choice for this series.
The 2oz antique finished part of the equation consists of a ring of metal packed with layers of hieroglyph-style visual elements. A simplified version with a line of ankh symbols populates the obverse face. In the centre of the coin sits a Perspex dome in which suspended in mineral oil are fine flakes of gold. It’s almost like a miniature up-market snowglobe. The coin is a chunky beast, helped along by the metal from the whole making the rest thicker.
Packaging is attractive. A heavily themed pyramid shaped box (what else…) has a hinged apex that opens to reveal the coin inside. The whole thing is gimmicky of course, but a neat item for the archaeology and history buff. Selling for $229.00 AUD and with a mintage of 2,500 pieces, this is an oddball entrant in an oddball series and should be checked out for that reason alone.