Explorer Matthew Flinders’ journal about a trip to what is now Australia was published 200 years ago this year.
In 2014, the Royal Australian Mint is commemorating the publication anniversary of A Journey to Terra Australis with three collector options, a set of Uncirculated aluminum-bronze dollars, a Proof silver dollar and a Proof gold $10 coin.
Sailing on the HMS Investigator, Flinders was the first to circumnavigate Australia and identify it as a continent, in a trip that lasted from 1801 to 1803. His maps were included in the journal published the day before he died at the age of 40, and the journal helped popularize the name “Australia” for the continent.
A map outline of Australia and a view of Flinders’ ship are seen on the reverse of the coins, set against compass points. The obverse of the coins carries the Ian Rank-Broadley effigy of Queen Elizabeth II.
The Uncirculated coin is available in a four-coin Mint mark and privy mark set. A C Mint mark on one coin represents the Canberra facility, where the Royal Australian Mint is located. The set’s other three coins individually bear a privy mark of B for Brisbane, M for Melbourne or S for Sydney.
Each coin’s mark appears on the reverse, just below the North compass point.
Each Uncirculated aluminum-bronze dollar weighs 9 grams and measures 25 millimeters in diameter.
The set of all four Mint mark and privy mark dollar coins is available in unlimited mintage for $22.50 Australian.
The Proof .999 fine silver dollar bears a C Mint mark, weighs 11.66 grams and measures 25 millimeters in diameter. The silver $1 has a mintage limit of 12,500 pieces and retails for $55 Australian.
The .9999 fine gold coin has a C Mint mark, weighs 3.11 grams and measures 17.53 millimeters in diameter. It has a mintage limit of 2,500 pieces and each retails for $360 Australian.
For more information about the coins, visit the RAM’s store at https://eshop.ramint.gov.au/.
Distributor Downies offers the coins to collectors in North America, with pricing in American funds. Downies is offering the $1 set at $22.50, the silver coin at $55 and the gold coin at $449.
To order from Downies, telephone toll free at 877-897-7696 or visit www.downies.com. ■
Image courtesy of the State Library of New South Wales and wikipedia.org.
Coin images courtesy of the Royal Australian Mint.