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    Modern Numismatics

    Louis Golino has been a collector of American and world coins since childhood and has written about coins since 2009. He writes about modern coins and other numismatic issues for Coin World. He is a founding member of the Modern Coin Forum.

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  • Tokelau Odin Coin Uses "Max Relief" to Great Effect

    ?Several new series about ancient Nordic gods are debuting this fall.  They appear to be inspired both artistically and in format by the Perth Mint’s Olympian gods and goddesses series of antique silver coins in high relief, which ends in September with the release of the Aphrodite coin.

    The most interesting is undoubtedly the Legends of Asgard from a new U.S. company, Choice Mint, which had the private Helvetic Mint in Switzerland produce this series under the legal authority of Tokelau. 

    The impressive first coin in the series is “Odin: Ruler of the Aesir.”  It is made of three ounces of .999 silver with an antique finish and has a large, 50 millimeter diameter, a weight of 93.3 grams, and a mintage of just 1500 coins.  The coins also come in beautiful wooden boxes and have their certificate of authenticity number laser etched on the rim.

    Odin is shown seated holding his legendary spear with ravens on each side of his throne and wolves at his feet.

    Most importantly, the coin’s design is depicted in a truly stunning artistic manner and struck in a new type of relief that goes way beyond high relief and even ultra-high relief, which normally achieves a maximum depth of no more than 2 millimeters. 

    This coin is struck in what Choice Mint calls “Max Relief,” which is an amazing 3.5 millimeters in depth (the highest point is 5 millimeters and the lowest is 1.5, giving the coin a relief of 3.5).  Producing a coin with this level of relief involved first hand-sculpting the intricate design into plaster rather than relying on computer programs.

    The Odin coin is an impressive achievement of numismatic art that I expect will also be a commercial success, as first coins in a new series often are if the series becomes popular.

    Initial reactions to the Odin coin from collectors since it was announced at the end of last week have been very positive with typical comments being “amazing” and “like nothing I have ever seen.”  Modern coin collectors have shown a strong preference for coins that are struck in deep relief, especially when they are artistically compelling.

    And Norse/Germanic gods are already popular in movies, comics, and other aspects of popular culture.

    Odin was a complex and enigmatic character in Norse mythology and literature, who was chief of the Aesir tribe of gods, and whose kingdom was known as the Asgard.  The day of the week, Wednesday, comes from his name in Germanic languages, which include English.

    First Coin Company (www.firstcoincompany.com) is selling the coin in the U.S. along with Powercoin in Italy and the Coin Shoppe in Canada.  The coin is expected to begin shipping towards the end of September.

    Readers of this column who order the coin from First Coin Company can get a 4% discount off the current price of $181.90 with free worldwide shipping by using the code, “WEEKODIN”.  In addition, buyers who plan to get the rest of the series from the same company can be guaranteed the same serial number on each coin by paying $15 one time for the whole series.   If you live overseas and are charged any import duties, the company will reimburse you for any taxes or fees. 

    Prices are expected to move up quickly, and a sell-out is likely.

    Check out this You Tube video on the coin: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lS5EQxbwAuw