|Coin||Silver Half Ounce 2021 Ginger Meggs - 1921|
The Australian half ounce silver piece (abbreviated as 1/2 oz and designated with Ag for "silver") is a bullion and commemorative coin format. Uniquely, in Australia there are two mints authorised to strike legal tender: the Royal Australian Mint (which also makes the country's circulating coinage) and the Perth Mint which only makes collector and bullion coins, as well as other bullion products.
Both mints endeavour to create coins with attractive designs, and to introduce new designs and themes often, in order to raise the numismatic value of the coins over the value of previous metal used.
This coloured silver half-ounce coin was issued in a two-coin sets marking 100 years since the release of Ginger Meggs.
The Mint says about it:
"When Sydney artist Jimmy Bancks created a newspaper cartoon strip in 1921, he could scarcely have imagined one of his characters, a red-headed boy named Ginger Smith would still be amusing readers a century later. Ginger Smith soon became Ginger Meggs, one of Australia's most successful cultural creations, with his antics syndicated around the world. Ginger Meggs is now produced by cartoonist and comedian Jason Chatfield, the strip’s fifth artist."
The obverse of the coin depicts the crowned old bust of Queen Elizabeth II facing right, wearing the Royal Diamond Diadem crown worn for her Coronation (effigy known as the "Fifth Portrait" worldwide but "Sixth Portrait" in Australia, where the Queen's portrait by Vladimir Gottwald was fifth).
The Queen also wears the Coronation Necklace; originally made for Queen Victoria in 1858, it was also worn at the coronations (as Queen's Consort) of Queen Alexandra in 1902, Queen Mary in 1911 and Queen Elizabeth (the Queen mother) in 1937.
Unlike on British coinage, the effigy is "uncouped" (includes the Queen's shoulders) and extends almost to the rim of the coin; consequently, the legend does not run continuously around the rim.
The artist's initials JC (for Jody Clark) are incuse in tiny letters in the left field of the effigy (on the Queen's right shoulder, near the rim).
Around the effigy is the monarch's legend and the date: ELIZABETH II · AUSTRALIA 2021.
The reverse of the coin shows a coloured cartoon representation of the characters from the comic book More Adventures of Ginger Meggs (Series 27, 1950), as illustrated by James “Jimmy” Bancks on the published comic cover.
Above, Bancks'; below, in colour: GINGER MEGGS. Above right, the face value and denomination 1 DOLLAR. Below, the year when the series started: 1921.
||Bancks' GINGER MEGGS 1 DOLLAR 1921
Finish: Frosted Uncirculated, coloured.
The designs for the coins in the Centenary of Ginger Meggs Coin Set were approved by the Assistant Treasurer in Currency (Australian Coins) Amendment (2021 Royal Australian Mint No. 1) Determination 2021 on 17 March 2021.