Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Mint of Poland Issue Romeo And Juliet Silver Coin To Start New Series

Kicking off a series of stunning silver coins struck at the Mint of Poland (Mennica Polska) entitled "Famous Love Stories", this captivating new release is dedicated to the tragic tale of Romeo and Juliet.

2010 $1 Romeo And Juliet Silver Proof

Romeo and Juliet is a Shakespearean drama presenting the tragic love of two young people whose story has become a model for romantic lovers. The play was written between 1591 and 1595 and was inspired heavily from the Italian romantic story "The Tragical History of Romeus and Juliet" (1562) by Arthur Brooke, which had already been retold as "Paradise of Pleasure" (1582) by William Painter.

The play tells the story of Romeo, a member of the Montague family of Verona, and Juliet, the daughter of the rival Capulet family. The Capulets and Montagues are warring families opposed on every front, the patriarchs of each family stubborn in their respective prides. Upon a first look Romeo and Juliet fall in love and are secretly wed by a sympathetic priest, motivated by the ideal that these two young lovers might bring peace to the war between the families. However when Romeo is banished from Verona for a revenge killing, Juliet is forced into an arranged marriage - one she tries to get out of by taking a drug that puts her in a "death-like state" for several hours. Juliet's family, believing her to be dead, lay her to rest in the family crypt. Romeo's servant, Balthazar, sees Juliet within the crypt and tells Romeo that his beloved has died. Overcome with grief, Romeo obtains a vial of poison with the intention of joining his love in the afterlife. He returns to Verona and seals himself in the crypt where Juliet lays, drinking the poison and dying beside her. At that moment Juliet awakes to see Romeo's lifeless body, and succumbing to her own grief takes her life using Romeo's dagger. Both families discover the bodies of their children and swear to overlook their differences from then on.

This beautifully crafted silver proof coin is the first in a series which will also feature tributes to Samson and Delilah and Paris and Helen of Troy, amongst others. The reverse design of this coin features an image of the star cross'd lovers staring lovingly into each others eyes. Around them are traditional renaissance patterns. The obverse, which is common to to the "Famous Love Stories" series, shows a figure of Anteros, Greek God of requited love. The design is inspired by the statue located at Piccadilly Circus in London, which is known as the Angel of Christian Charity. Above is an effigy of Queen Elizabeth II, while inscribed around the bottom rim is the country and year of issue along with the nominal face value of the coin.

Each superb collector coin is struck by the Mint of Poland from 28.28 grams of 92.5% sterling silver on a 38.61mm flan by the authority of the island nation of Niue to exacting proof quality. The coin is encapsulted with a mintage of just 9,000 issues released worldwide.

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