A Different Mercury Coin
With all the
focus on the release today of the 2016-W gold Mercury dime, properly called
Winged Liberty or Liberty Head dime as numismatists know, collectors may not be
aware that a different Mercury coin is also going to be released soon.
It is the
second release in the Mint of Poland’s solar system series, which debuted last
year with the issuance of the popular 2015 moon coin. These pieces are issued under the legal
authority of Niue, and the 2016 coin features the planet Mercury, which is the
smallest planet and the one closest to the sun.
Like the moon
coin the new issue, which is expected to be available in May, will be dome
shaped and comes with an antique finish, but for the Mercury issue it will be a
yellow-colored antique finish to resemble the color of the planet.
the Mercury coin is embedded with a small piece of a real meteorite like the
moon issue was. In this case it is the
NWA8409 meteorite found in Northwest Africa, specifically in Morocco in 2013. This particular meteorite is worth $3,000 for
one gram, and the fragment on the coin is worth about $70.
of the coin is convex-shaped and depicts the surface of the planet and has the
meteorite fragment, while the obverse is concave and has a rather small effigy
of Queen Elizabeth II like all Commonwealth coins as well as lots of surface
details of the planet.
is just 666 pieces, and the coin comes in a wooden display box with a
certificate of authenticity.
depicting planets, meteorites, and other subjects related to astronomy and
space have become very popular in recent years, as I explained in my article in
the September issue of Coin World magazine (http://www.coinworld.com/news/world-coins/2015/09/space-themed-world-coins-more-popular-than-ever.html).
is never any guarantee, these coins also have a rather solid track record with
the best example being a 2009 Cook Islands moon coin that is now worth 10 times
its issue price.
coin is available from sellers such as the Coin Shoppe (www.thecoinshoppe.ca), a Canadian company
that ships frequently to the U.S. via Niagara Falls, and on eBay. The coin is priced at about $200 at the Coin
Shoppe, while recent eBay sales have been about 10% higher at $220 and $230. Don’t be surprised if the coin reaches higher
prices in the coming weeks.
coins in this series will depict Mars in 2017 and the Earth in 2018. With one coin a year and an impressive level
of detail on these coins as well as their shape, low mintage, and rare
meteorite fragments, the solar system series is shaping up to be a winner as
well as an interesting and coherent set of coins.