World of Wonders series continued
September 6, 2012 – With Palau continuing its successful ‘World of Wonders’ series, collectors can once again delight in the exceptional beauty of some of the world’s most important architectural landmarks. The Coin Invest Trust has created six splendid, colourful coins for the Micronesian island nation, capturing in silver a selection of awe-inspiring sites from Ireland to Japan.
Palau, each: 5 dollars / silver .925 / 20 g / 38.61 mm / Mintage: 2,500 pieces.
The front, which is common to all of the coins, depicts Palau’s coat of arms – a sea god with a mermaid. The name of the issuing nation, ‘REPUBLIC OF PALAU,’ sits above the coat of arms, and below it, the face value of ‘$5’ is indicated. On the reverse, the coins depict the respective structures, with the name of the monument provided on the upper edge, and a globe with the inscription ‘World of Wonders’ to indicate the coins’ inclusion in the series of the same name.
The Coin Invest Trust has been designing the ‘World of Wonders’ range for the Micronesian island nation since 2010, celebrating the world’s beauty and famous, distinctive structures representative of different countries and cities.
The Brandenburg Gate in Berlin is a monument unlike any other, serving as a symbol not just of the German capital, but also of the entire country and its history. The structure was inaugurated in 1791 as a ‘peace gate,’ but it wasn’t until the Cold War that it truly attained its symbolic significance. The gate stood in the middle of the exclusion zone of the wall that separated East from West, and no one was allowed to pass. Since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and, with it, the demise of the Iron Curtain, the Brandenburg Gate has been seen as a symbol of German reunification.
The Hagia Sophia in Istanbul. Photo: Roweromaiak / Wikipedia.
The Hagia Sophia also marks a divide, namely that between Europe and Asia. In the year 532, Emperor Justinian began construction on a church that was to overshadow all other places of worship. After only 6 years and the work of more than ten thousand workers, it was completed – an enormous structure of astonishing beauty featuring a massive dome of over 30 metres in diameter. From 641, the Sophia church in the heart of the old city served as the main setting for imperial coronations. When the Ottomans conquered Byzantium in 1453, they were so awestruck by the church that they decided to use it as a central mosque.
The Itsukushima Shrine, located on the island of Miyajima, southwest from Hiroshima, is one of Japan’s best-known monuments. Built in 593, the shrine has been restored repeatedly and used continuously. Its famous ritual entrance gate, the torii, is located just off the coast, so that at high tide it actually appears to float on the water. At low tide, however, it can be reached by foot. This distinctive structure with its typical red colour is also depicted on the coin. In 1996, the Itsukushima Shrine was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and even today, is one of the most popular places in the Land of the Rising Sun to hold traditional wedding ceremonies.
The fourth coin is dedicated to Palmyra, a city in the Syrian Desert. The city’s importance as a way station for camel caravans and armies brought it great prosperity. During the Roman Imperial period, incredible structures were built, the imposing and magnificently marbled remains of which continue to amaze visitors today. This ancient landscape of ruins has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1980.
With a length of 91 metres, St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin is Ireland’s largest church and has been designated ‘The People’s Church,’ as opposed to the city’s other cathedral, which was used by the English. It’s alleged that during the 5th century, Ireland’s patron saint, St. Patrick, baptized pagan islanders on the site where the cathedral now stands. From 1713 to 1745, Jonathan Swift, author of Gulliver’s Travels, was dean of the cathedral. He is also interred there and various of his works are preserved within this house of worship.
The Church of the Saviour on Spilled Blood in Saint Petersburg. Foto: Sailko / Wikipedia.
The final coin is dedicated to the Church of the Saviour on Spilled Blood in Saint Petersburg, a structure with an unusual history. Although it was consecrated as a church, it has never served religious purposes. The church was built under Alexander III as a memorial to his father, Czar Alexander I, who was assassinated at the site in 1881. Construction took place from 1883 to 1912 in the trendy art nouveau style of the time. It was first used as a concert hall and then as a theatre.
It should be noted that individual pieces of this series from previous years are also available.
More information on this series and other products you may find on the website of the Coin Invest Trust.
Stroll around through the ancient ruins of Palmyra, …
… or admire the Itsukushima Shrine at high tide.