World Coins

Swedish Antarctic exploration honored on Pobjoy 2022 £2 coins

The Pobjoy Mint has released two 2022 £2 coins celebrating 100 years since the end of the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration, both featuring the “Antarctic.”

Images courtesy of the Pobjoy Mint.

The Pobjoy Mint has released two new £2 coins for 2022 celebrating 100 years since the end of the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration, both featuring the Antarctic.

The Antarctic was a Swedish steamship built in Drammen, Norway, in 1871, originally used for seal hunting in Greenland. In 1900 Otto Nordenskjold purchased the Antarctic for use in his exploration of the Antarctic Peninsula region.

The Swedish Antarctic Expedition, led by Nordenskjold, has often been distinguished by the sheer volume of its scientific findings, according to the Pobjoy Mint.

The Antarctic and its 23 crew members set sail heading south from Gothenburg in Sweden to the Antarctic Peninsula on Oct. 16, 1901, with the aim of establishing a station in Antarctica as far south as they could travel prior to the harsh winter.

The crew had to stop at Snow Hill Island in Antarctica in February of 1902, and the ship was sailed to the Falkland Islands to wait out winter. But the wait would turn out to be much longer — until rescue by another ship in November 1903. 

In late 1902 on its way back after the winter, the Antarctic got stuck in ice several times until early 1903; it never did return to Snow Hill Island. Instead, damaged after breaking free again and heading toward Uruguay, the ship sank. The Antarctic remains intact on the floor of the Weddell Sea.

Coinage details

Both £2 coins, issued in the name of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, feature the Antarctic and the Swedish Antarctic Expedition’s leader, Otto Nordenskjold.

An Uncirculated copper-nickel ringed-bimetallic coin and a Proof .925 fine silver coin with “goldclad surround” are available. Each weighs 12 grams and measures 28.4 millimeters in diameter.

Each obverse features an effigy of Queen Elizabeth II produced exclusively by Pobjoy Mint.

The copper-nickel coin has a mintage limit of 2,022 pieces and is presented in a colorful presentation pack. It retails for $17.95.

The Proof .925 fine silver version is limited to 195 pieces. It comes in a red box complimented with a sleeve and retails for $69.95.

To order, or learn more, visit the Pobjoy Mint website,

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