WMF ’23: Mint XXI issues a dragon coin for a more elegant age – the Flaming Wyvern

While dragons are nothing new on coins, we’ve noticed a huge swing towards the Asian form of the mythical beast – long bodied, delicate, and chasing a pearl. The Wyvern is a two-legged, winged version, popularised in Northern Europe, particularly in the countries of the British Isles, and common today in heraldic circles. It was often venomous, and associated with death and misfortune.

Mint XXI’s winter offerings are always exceptional, but this one stood out for our first look at the range by virtue of being a stunning composition. The beast is intertwined with a flame-haired beauty, and through the use of high-relief, is expertly realised. There’s lots going on here, and the way the design draws the eye around the surface is quite uncanny. The obverse focuses on the eye, also coloured like a flame, surrounded by scaly flesh. It’s great to see an obverse get this much attention.

This one tips the scales at the ever popular two-ounces, and is struck in 0.999 silver with copious levels of high-relief. It comes boxed with a Certificate of Authenticity, and the mintage is capped at 500 pieces. A genuinely beautiful piece of numismatic art, and one which uses colour to enhance, rather than distract from, the overall effect. A shame I won’t be at WMF to see it in hand.

DENOMINATION 2000 Francs CFA (Cameroon)
COMPOSITION 62.2 g of 0.999 silver
FINISH Antique
MODIFICATIONS High-relief, colour