The cat god Bastet ushers in the second series of Egyptian Symbols coins and we have a sneak peek

With a casual launch schedule running from 2014 to 2017, Egyptian Symbols from numiartis was an attractive series of three, 3oz silver coins bringing to life some of the more famous motifs of Ancient Egyptian Culture. The Ankh and the Eye of Horus were fine looking coins, but the third, Winged Isis, was really beautiful and boded well for a fourth release that never came.

Fortunately, the concept is back off hiatus with Egyptian Symbols II. The first coin to launch is ‘Bastet’, the goddess that protected the worshippers home from evil spirits and diseases. Bastet was associated with woman above all else, particularly fertility and chilbirth, but also with the Egyptian civilisations favourite animal, the humble cat (if you could ever call a cat humble, that is…)

An incredibly popular deity, as you’d expect from a domestic guardian, she was the daughter of Ra, and over the history of Egypt, changed from a third millennium BCE depiction as lioness-headed, to having the head of a cat some 2,000 years later. It’s easy to understand why Bastet was so popular. Cats keep down vermin, thus protecting grain and stopping the spread of disease. They also protect their young in a highly relateable way. Worship of the goddess faded in the Ptolemaic era, although the Greeks sometimes equated her with their own goddess, Artemis.

The new coin carries on with the same physical format as the first series – a 3oz fine silver strike that’s antique finished and issued for Palau. The background fields of both faces are filled to the border with elements of Egyptian culture and architecture. The reverse face has a perspective view of a temple interior, upon which sits a black cat shown in the Ancient Egyptian style used for so many funerary sculptures. It’s richly coloured in black, complete with gilded highl;ights and some colour to replicate the look of precious minerals. It almost looks fresh from Tutankhamun’s tomb.

The obverse is a random selection of architectural monuments from the civilisation, with the Great Pyramids, Abu Simbel, and the Sphinx being the most recognisable elements. The first series had a new obverse for every release, but we’re unsure if that is the case for series II. A border surrounds the design on each face, which is identical.

It’s a striking coin, with lots of crisp high-relief and doesn’t waste any space on either the reverse or the obverse face. The mintage is set at 500 pieces, and the coin will come boxed and in a themed slip, and has a Certificate of Authenticity. It’s a great nod to one of mankinds most long-lived, inventive, and impressive civilisations. Hopefully we’ll see new issue on an annual basis moving forward. If we get more images, we’ll certainly have another look.

COMPOSITION 0.999 silver
WEIGHT 93.3 grams
FINISH Antique
MODIFICATIONS Ultra high-relief, Colour, Gilding
BOX / C.O.A. Yes / Yes