It’s great to see the trend in coins featuring the ancient world to go with the actual over the fantastical for its subjects, and the latest from the Mint of Poland is another of those. There are some beautiful artifacts emanating from the early civilisations and a prime example of that is the 3,500 year old ‘Mask of Agamemnon’.
Discovered by the shady German archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann, it has nevertheless been accepted as genuine by most experts today. Formed in gold, the mask is around 30cm tall and looks made to be worn. Schliemann thought it proof of the existence of Troy, but it’s amazing to discover the mask actually predates that by around four centuries.
The coin reproduces the mask in high-relief and with a shiny gilded layer. The mint has wisely restrained itself from embellishing it with intrusive adornments, and what we have is an accurate and beautifully realised representation of the stunning original. The inscriptions are restricted to an antique finished background that forms a loose border and highlights the mask very well.
The obverse has an imprint of the mask laid over an image of the famous ‘Lion Gate’, which was the entrance to the old city of Mycenae. The gate is a famous monument in its own right and is actually around 300 years younger than the mask, but from the same culture. It’s a great choice for the face of this three ounce silver Cameroonian coin. Presented in a latex ‘floating’ frame and with a mintage of 500 pieces, the coin is available to order now.