Friday, October 17, 2014

Commemorative coins : Canada 1867-1967 - 02

When artist David A. Colville designed the back side of the 6 centennial coins of Canada, he clearly knew what he had in mind. For each of the 6 designs, he chose an animal that stood symbol for the Canadians and their society.

Although I have the shown coins in my collection, I used the detailed (and coloured) pictures of the animals from someone else. All credits for the pictures go to Patrick Glassford.

1 cent

Commemorative coins rarely have a low face value, as they usually cost more to mint, than the actual face value.
1 cent - centennial 1967
The design described by the artist himself : "For this I wished to use a very common bird, but one with symbolic overtones. I selected the dove (rock dove) -very common, in cities as well as in the country, as the pigeon, and having associations with spiritual values and also with peace."

1 cent - rock dove in flight
Mintage : 345,140,645 - 98% copper, 1.5% zinc, 0.5% tin

5 cent

The 5 cent or nickel features the rabbit, a common creature in Canada. Beatrix Potter did the Peter Rabbit children's books. The original design was a spruce tree but it turned out too complicated so it became a rabbit design.

5 cent (nickel) - centennial 1967
According the artist : "The rabbit (varying hare) is common, much loved by children, perhaps because of it vulnerability. It survives by alertness and speed, and is symbolically connected to the ideas of fertility, new life and promise-it is a future, or united, animal."

5 cent  (a nickel) - hopping rabbit
Mintage : 36,876,574 - 99.% nickel

10 cent

The Canadian Mint wanted the fish to be changed to a salmon, but David A. Colville stuck to his guns and stayed with his mackerel. The ten cent piece with a few exceptions over the years usually shows the Nova Scotia Schooner 'Bluenose'.

10 cent (dime) - centennial 1967
"Being the smallest coin, this requires a simple and unambiguous image. I used the mackerel, one of the most beautiful and streamlined fish, common on both coasts. The fish has ancient religious implications; I think of it as symbol of continuity."... David A. Coleville.

10 cent (dime) - mackerel
Mintage :  62,998,215 - 80% silver, 20% copper

25 cent
25 cent (quarter) - centennial 1967
Before you send letters stating that it's really a cougar/wolf/lynx/wildcat/bobcat/etc. Even some reputable coin dealers' books and websites have it listed as one or other of the above. Charlton Standard Catalogue of Canadian Coins lists it as a "Cougar" on page 96.
But this is what the designer self said :

"The wildcat (bobcat) seemed appropriate for this coin, which is large enough for the subtle shape of this common, though rarely seen, animal. It is expressive of a certain intelligent independence and a capacity for formidable action."

25 cent (quarter) - bobcat

Mintage :   48,855,500 - 80% silver, 20% copper

 ... to be continued ...

1 comment:

Kiron Manuel said...

I have lots of coins and coin based stamps