The Twenty Francs coin is a denomination of the Swiss Franc. Given that Switzerland has four official languages, the Franc has three different names: Franken in German, franc in French and Romansh, and franco in Italian.
In regular circulation, the denomination is served by a banknote. These coins are non-circulating legal tender made for collectors. They are issued in topical series, celebrating various aspects of Swiss heritage or nature.
The edge is inscribed with the motto DOMINUS PROVIDEBIT (The Lord will provide - a quote from the Bible, Genesis 22, 8), and thirteen stars representing the original thirteen cantons of the Swiss Federation.
This commemorative coin marks the 100th anniversary of the Circus Knie.
At its release, Swissmint said:
"The historical roots of the Swiss national circus Knie go back to the beginning of the 19th century when Friedrich Knie joined a group of performers and thereby founded the Knie circus dynasty. However, it was around 100 years ago that the Knie family laid the foundation for an unparalleled success story and its fame today. The decision was made to buy a tent on credit, and the family celebrated its first show in the 3,000-seater big top on the Schützenmatte in Bern. This opening show was an immense success and drew huge crowds. The idea of having a circus tent was the basis for one of the world's best known and most important circus companies.
Since then, Circus Knie has been enthusing young and old with opulently staged programmes in its circus ring. Although the Knies lived through some hard times, for instance when the public stayed away for various reasons, the circus family always found its way out of difficult financial situations thanks to mutual family support, strong will and visionary foresight. Circus Knie reinforced its international reputation with various guest shows abroad and innovative shows, for example with the involvement of the Chinese national circus (1984), the Moscow State Circus (1988), Mummenschanz (1988) and Cirque du Soleil (1992)."
Unlike other 20 Franc coins, this one was not released in regular Brilliant Uncirculated grade. Only 5,000 proofs were issued, plus 1,000 Brilliant Uncirculated "trial strikes" several months later. This is the first coloured Swiss 20 Francs coin (only the proofs are coloured; the trials are not).