World Coins

Vatican marks Jubilee of Mercy with €2 coin

Vatican City honors the Jubilee of Mercy with a circulating commemorative €2 coin due for release in October.

Images courtesy of the European Commission.

Vatican City plans to mark the ongoing Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy with a circulating commemorative €2 coin due for release in October. 

Pope Francis has designated the period from Dec. 8, 2015, to Nov. 20, 2016, as the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy. 

According to the United States Conference on Catholic Bishops, this designation as an “Extraordinary Jubilee” sets it apart from the ordinary cycle of jubilees, or holy years, which are called every 25 years in the Catholic Church.

“By calling for a holy year outside of the normal cycle, a particular event or theme is emphasized," the organization said. "For example, Pope Francis called this particular Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy to direct our attention and actions “on mercy so that we may become a more effective sign of the Father’s actions in our lives.” 

The obverse of the coin shows St. Martin of Tours sharing his cloak with a poor man. Saint Martin was bishop of Tours and a shrine there is a popular stop on the pilgrimage route known as the Camino de Santiago.

The design is surrounded by the inscriptions GIUBILEO DELLA MISERICORDIA at the left and CITTÀ DEL VATICANOat the right, both in semi-circle. At the right there is as well the year of issuance 2016 and at the bottom the R Mint mark and the name of the artist M. CRISCIOTTI.

A total of 105,000 coins are due to be released in October. Though the coin is a circulating denomination, most coins of the Vatican are issued only for collector sales.

The ringed-bimetallic coin has a copper-nickel core and copper-aluminum-nickel ring.

The coin’s outer ring depicts the 12 stars of the European flag. The common reverse shows a map of the European Union.

The €2 coin weighs 8.5 grams and measures 25.75 millimeters in diameter.

Each nation is allowed to issue up to two different circulating commemorative designs annually, with designs of their choosing, though few nations issue the maximum number of designs.

Joint euro programs like the 2015 coins honoring the 30th anniversary of the flag of the European Union do not count toward this limit.

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