|Coin||Silver Three Ounces 2020 Dendera Zodiac Egypt|
The Cook Islands, a sovereign state in free association with New Zealand, uses two official legal tender currencies. The New Zealand Dollar circulates in parallel with the local Cook Islands Dollar; at the same time, the government also authorises many legal tender coins in the Cook Islands Dollar currency for collector's purposes.
Collector coins are dedicated to historical or general popular culture themes not related to the country itself. Many of them are in standard bullion sizes, including the large three ounces of silver format - such as this coin.
The Mint says about it:
The Dendera Zodiac Egypt coin is the fourth issue in the Archaeology and Symbolism series. The impossible has been made possible using the enhanced smartminting technology and brings the sculptured Dendera zodiac to life. The coin has an antique or silk finish and is struck on a 3 oz pure .999 silver huge 65 mm blank in the highest quality.
The Dendera Zodiac is a widely known Egyptian bas-relief which was added to the ceiling of a chapel dedicated to Osiris inside the Hathor Temple in the Dendera Temple complex around 50 BC. The Dendera Zodiac is one of the best-preserved ancient depictions of the observable stars. It shows all five planets known to the Ancient Egyptians in an alignment that occurs once every one thousand years and both a solar and lunar eclipse. The sky disc is centred on the north pole star, and Ursa Minor is depicted as a jackal. An inner disc is composed of constellations showing the signs of the zodiac. The original Zodiac of Dendera currently resides at the Louvre in Paris.
The obverse of the coin shows a large question mark at its centre, filled with Ancient symbols.
Below left, the Fourth Definitive Portrait of Queen Elizabeth II, by Ian Rank-Broadley; the Queen is crowned, facing right. Below the portrait, the designer's initials IRB.
The background of the centre is patterned with thin concentric lines. Around below right, the name of the series ARCHEOLOGY & SYMBOLISM (sic).
The rim is raised; incuse in it, around above the monarch's legend: ELIZABETH II · COOK ISLANDS; around below, the face value 20 DOLLARS.
The reverse of the coin depicts, in Ultra High Relief, the Zodiac of Dendera with a bowl-shaped centre, all its characteristics, and Egyptian inscriptions.
Around above and around below in the rim, the name DENDERA ZODIAC. The date 2020 is also in the rim, divided by the central design.
||DENDERA ZODIAC 2020
Finish: antique, smartminting (Ultra High Relief).
Packaging: in capsule and box, with a Certificate of Authenticity.
NumisCollect Article ID: CK2003
Mintage includes 333 coins with antique finish and 99 gold plated.
Coins in the Archaeology and Symbolism series include:
- 3 oz Silver Antique (with gilded version), Aztec Calendar Stone, Cook Islands 2018
- 3 oz Silver Antique (with gilded version), Kalachakra Mandala, Mongolia 2019
- 3 oz Silver Antique (with gilded version), Samsara Wheel of Life, Cook Islands 2019
- 3 oz Silver Antique (with gilded version), Dendera Zodiac Egypt, Cook Islands 2020
- 3 oz Silver Antique (with gilded version), Vasudhara Mandala, Mongolia 2020
- 3 oz Silver Antique (with coloured and gilded versions), Aztec Coyolxauhqui Stone, Cook Islands 2021
- 3 oz Silver Antique (with part and fully gilded versions), Bactrian Cybele Disk, Cook Islands 2021
- 3 oz Silver Antique (with part and fully gilded versions), Tutankhamun’s Tomb, Cook Islands 2022
- 3 oz Silver Antique (with coloured and gilded versions), Vairochana Buddha, Mongolia 2022