The Mint of Austria has launched a new coin series which explores the allure and magic of gold, which, since time immemorial, has had a unique effect on those who behold it. The Magic of Gold series traces the mysterious nature of gold in ancient cultures. No other metal has as much symbolic meaning as gold, and no other concrete substance has been linked with so many abstract concepts, including heavenly blessings, immortality, purity, and power.
With the first coin in the Magic of Gold series, the Mint of Austria travels back in time to Ancient Mesopotamia, “the land between two rivers” — the Tigris and the Euphrates. In Mesopotamian culture, the ownership of gold was associated with high standing, and all gold had to be handed over to the ruling classes and religious leaders. It was reserved for the powerful and the even more powerful — the gods. Mesopotamian gold was mainly sourced from Egypt, where it was believed that the streets were paved with the precious metal.
Designed by Helmut Andexlinger and Herbert Wähner, the obverse side of the Gold of Mesopotamia coin features a portrait of the legendary ruler King Nebuchadnezzar II (circa 640-562 B.C.) wearing a horned crown. According to the Book of Daniel in the Old Testament, Nebuchadnezzar erected a huge golden statue and made his subjects worship it on bended knee. The reverse side of the coin shows a bull’s head from a detail found on the Golden Lyre of Ur, which was discovered in 1929 in the Royal Cemetery of Ur (located in present-day Iraq). Created roughly 4,500 years ago, the lyre is considered to be one of the world’s oldest-surviving stringed instruments.
|16.23 g||30 mm||Proof||
All six coins in the Magic of Gold series will feature ancient art treasures, and the inscription “gold” is written on each of the individual designs in the respective script of the culture they explore: Mesopotamia, Ancient Egypt, the Incas, the Scythians, India, and China. The first coin is officially issued on the 16th October, and the Mint of Austria is accepting pre-issue orders now. Each Proof quality coin is presented in a case, complete with a numbered certificate of authenticity and protective slipcase.
A custom-designed case to accommodate all six coins in the series has been specially crafted and is available separately. For additional information, please visit the website of the Mint of Austria.