The Royal Canadian Mint has unveiled the new effigy which will be seen on Canadian circulation, collector, and bullion coinage. The new likeness was revealed on the 75th birthday of His Majesty who celebrated his second birthday as sovereign and the first since he was crowned. His Royal Highness, Charles Philip Arthur George, Prince of Wales, acceded to the throne and became Canada’s Head of State upon the passing of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, on the 8th September 2022. His coronation was held on the 5th May this year in Westminster Cathedral when he was solemnly crowned as the King of Great Britain and his other Realms. Following the government of Canada’s announcement of their proclamation of the new sovereign, an invitation was sent to more than 350 artists in the database of the Royal Canadian Mint as well as to their Mint engravers with instructions on the submission of a proposed effigy for Canada’s coinage. Each artist and engraver who responded with a notice of interest and a required portfolio of portrait work was evaluated. Each shortlisted artist and engraver received an artist final brief outlining mandatory design requirements. Submitted design concepts were evaluated by an internal Mint review panel that judged submissions based on aesthetics, technical requirements and mass-production suitability. The winning design was submitted for necessary approval from the central government then finally from Buckingham Palace and, ostensibly, His Majesty the King himself.
The new effigy of HM King Charles III is the work of Canadian portrait artist Steven Rosati, who is nationally recognised for his Old Master style and technique. He studied fine arts, portrait painting, and graphic design in schools both publicly and privately in Montreal and Toronto. In keeping with tradition, Mr. Rosati has portrayed the King facing to the left in the opposite direction to the previous sovereign. His Majesty is shown in a suit jacket collar and tie with the initials “SR” of the artist placed just to the lower right on the King’s lapel. The legend surrounding the coin reads CHARLES III D · G · REX with the year of release placed under the King’s likeness on the one and two-dollar denominations. The new effigy reflects a change in Canadian coinage in terms of sovereign and effigy not seen since 1953.
Production of coinage bearing the likeness of King Charles III has already commenced and new coins dated 2023 are expected to enter circulation by the end of the year. The new coins are available in options of full classic Brilliant Uncirculated mint sets and in rolls of each denomination from two dollars to five cents. A special roll of 50-cent coins containing 25 pieces is also available. For additional information about mint and roll sets, please click here.