The coin, the first to come directly from Spectres, known for their large body of work with Precious Metal Collectors, Bullion Exchanges, and The Treasurists, is a classic two-ounce silver strike, packed with high-relief on both faces, and having an antiqued finish. It has a similar style to some of the earlier issues in the ‘Nine Worthies’ series, but shows some considerable bumps in detail and relief.
The reverse face depicts Hannibal, wielding a Carthaginian Falcata sword. In the background are the war elephants, something immediately associated with Hannibal, so there’s no mistaking who this is. The date of issue is inscribed on the front of the howdah, and the whole thing exhibits a fine use of depth. The obverse has a war elephant rearing up, trying to crush a Roman formation, called a Testudo (Tortoise). Carthaginian warriors with long spears try to skewer them from above. It gives a good idea of just how terrifying facing these animals in battle would have been, although they were notoriously unreliable.
It’s an impressive debut, full of clever touches, with things like the Falcata sword, and the Testudo, indicating much thought was put into its design. This is the first in a series called ‘Masters of War’, so one with a huge choice of subjects for release over the next few years. I’d love to see an Admiral Horatio Nelson one, for example, giving us a view of the Battle of Trafalgar. Packaging looks good, and the mintage of 500 is typical for the genre and weight. Available now.