British based Pobjoy Mint have announced their latest coin and despite dabbling with childrens character Paddington Bear a short while ago, they’ve gone back to a popular theme for them, history. Recent coins have featured the Sphinx and Sir Winston Churchill, and this latest issue lies inbetween those with the nineteenth century egomaniacal French Emperor, Napoleon Bonaparte.
Available in one-ounce silver format from Pobjoy, and one-ounce gold exclusively from GovMint in the US, the design is based on the famous painting of the man, Napoleon Crossing the Alps, by Jacques-Louis David (1748-1825), a man considered the pre-eminent artist of his day. Also known as Napoleon at the Saint-Bernard Pass or Bonaparte Crossing the Alps, there were a series of five oil on canvas paintings initially commissioned by the King of Spain and painted between 1801 and 1805. The composition shows a strongly idealized view of the real crossing that Napoleon and his army made across the Alps through the Great St. Bernard Pass in May 1800. All five are still in museums today.
The coin is issued for Ascension Island, an extremely remote British Overseas Territory, made famous in 1982 as an advanced staging post for British Forces in the Falkands War against the Argentines. With a population of less than a thousand, it’s fair to say that the coin wouldn’t sell out there if by some miracle it ever went on sale on the island.
Struck in the high-relief style that has gained in popularity over the last few years, the design has a solid foundation and will likely look great in the hand. The images really don’t do the coin justice and we will reach out for some better ones if they have them. The coin isn’t up on the Pobjoy or GovMint sites yet, so we don’t have confirmed prices, but they’ll be up soon enough.
Forgot to note, the gold images are ones we coloured from silver to give you an idea of what they look like. We’re still awaiting official ones, so bare that in mind.