Thursday, November 26, 2009

French 20 Franc Gold Angel

In 1871, the French 20 Franc Gold Angel design was resurrected from the 1793 “Guardian Angel” design was originally created during the French Revolution by Augustine Dupré. On the obverse, a winged angel inscribes the inspired French Constitution, set on a pedestal above Dupré’s signature. To its left is a fasces, the ancient Roman symbol of authority later used on the U.S. Mercury dime. To its right a proud rooster symbolizes the fighting spirit of the Republic. The reverse displays a laurel wreath of peace and achievement.

The Legend of the “Lucky Angel”

Gold Angels were nearly always regarded as lucky. During the Reign of Terror in the mid-1790s, the coin’s designer, Augustus Dupré, claimed to have been saved from the guillotine by the lucky Angel gold coin in his pocket. Dupré is said to make a quick prayer as he knelt beneath the deadly blade. A bolt of lightning then struck nearby, igniting a panic and halting his execution. Within six months Dupré was released, after which he always remained thankful for protective the coin’s protection.
The Angel’s reputation for good luck stuck. Mid-19th century Captains seldom went to sea without one. French pilots in World War I rarely took flight without a gold Angel coin in their pocket. During World War II, the chief of Hitler’s Luftwaffe, Hermann Goering, presented them to ace German fighter pilots as rewards for every fifth Allied plane shot down.
These lovely coins are an excellent choice for coin collectors and gold bullion investors alike. Minted from 1871 to 1898, “Angels” remain a high value for the price.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Serbian 1882 gold coin

In 1882, Serbia was proclaimed Kingdom, and King Milan its king. To mark that, and with a view to showing the new status of the state and its ruler on money as well, gold coins in 10- and 20-dinar denominations were issued the same year. At that time, in the absence of their own mint, the Obrenovićs used the services of the Royal Mint in Vienna. The 20-dinar gold coin, which in its production technique, appearance and value corresponded to the gold “Napoleon d’or” French coins, is popularly called “Milan’s coin” or “milandor” (Milan d’or). The recto features the King’s portrait with the inscription MILAN I KING OF SERBIA and the signature of A. Scharff, the engraver, whereas the verso bears the inscription of the value (20 dinars), year of issue (1882) and a wreath of laurel and oak leaves, with the Serbian royal crown on top. GOD SAVES SERBIA is inscribed on the rim of the coin.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Russia 200 Rubles Gold coin

The gold coin of 200 Rubles denomination "Figure-Skating" (fine precious metal content 31.1 g, fineness 999/1000, catalogue number 5219-0015, diameter 33.0 mm, mintage 500 pcs.).
The rim is raised on both sides of the coin.
The obverse: the relief picture of the Emblem of the Bank of Russia - the two headed eagle with wings down, and the semicircular inscription under it – "БАНК РОССИИ" (BANK OF RUSSIA). The inscriptions along the rim divided by dots indicate the denomination of the coin "ДВЕСТИ РУБЛЕЙ" (TWO HUNDRED RUBLES) and the year of issue "2009", between them – the indication of the metal sign in accordance with the D.I. Mendeleyev Periodic System of Chemical Elements, the fineness, the trade mark of the St. Petersburg Mint and the fine precious metal content.
The reverse: stylized relief image of a female figure-skater.

The edge of the coin is corrugated.