|Coin||Silver Half Ounce 2013 Henri II de Rohan|
Niue, a sovereign state in free association with New Zealand, uses two official legal tender currencies. The New Zealand Dollar is the circulation currency for daily transactions, while the government also authorises legal tender coins in the Niue Dollar currency for collector's purposes.
A number of mints issue a large variety of commemorative, bullion and collector coins under the authority of Niue. These coins are dedicated to historical or general popular culture themes not related to Niue itself. Many of them are in standard bullion sizes, based on the troy ounce - such as the half ounce of silver format (abbreviated as 1/2 oz Ag, where "Ag" comes from the Latin word for silver, Argentum).
This coin was issued as part of a set of four silver coins featuring the Rohan noble family and is dedicated to Henri II de Rohan.
The Rohan family were French aristocrats exiled by the French Revolution who decided to stay in the Austrian Empire. They purchased the Sychrov Castle in what is now the Czech Republic and owned it for 125 years until it was nationalised by the Socialist government in 1945.
Henri (II) de Rohan (21 August 1579 - 13 April 1638), Duke of Rohan and Prince of Léon, was a French soldier, writer and leader of the Huguenots. Having served in the army till the Peace of Vervins, he travelled for a considerable time over Europe, including England and Scotland, in the first of which countries he received the not unique honour of being called by Elizabeth I her knight, while in the second he was godfather at Charles I's christening.
||Mint Mark||Monogram ČM
In the upper half of the obverse, the coin shows the crowned mature head of Queen Elizabeth II facing right (her effigy known as the "Fourth Portrait"). The Queen wears the "Girls of Great Britain and Ireland" diamond tiara, a wedding gift from Queen Mary (Her Majesty's grandmother) in 1947 - which she also has on the Machin and the Gottwald portraits. There are no designer's initials below the effigy.
Around above left, ELIZABETH II ·; around above right, NIUE ISLAND. To the left of the effigy, the face value 1 DOLLAR; to the right, the date of issue 2013.
A banner at centre carries on three lines a motto in French: ROI NE PUIS, below which DUC NE DAIGNE, below which ROHAN JE SUIS (King I cannot, Duke I will not, Rohan I am).
Below left, the shield of the Rohan family featuring nine lozenges, symbols of the large crystals of chiastolite (andalusite) that abound in the Salles de Rohan. To the right of the shield, a crown.
Below right, the mint mark of the Czech Mint - a crowned monogram of the letters ČM (Česká mincovna).
The reverse of the coin shows a portrait of Henri II de Rohan. Below left, a knight's helmet as a symbol of his life as a soldier; next to it, a compass rose as a symbol of his travels.
Around left, the inscription HENRI II · DE ROHAN.
Around right, the dates of his life 1579 · 1638.
||HENRI II · DE ROHAN 1579 · 1638