Legend and Mythology Inspired Coinage #2

Queen Elizabeth II has a special spot in her heart for folklore.

Folklore is born in two ways. One way folklore is born is through the loss of culture. Invaders, sometimes called colonizers, liberators, explorers, or missionaries can suppress native histories, but the strongest beliefs survive as folklore. This is true of legends, and of faiths, first termed myths by the invading forces.

Secondly, folklore comes into existence through antiheroes that become so popular that their former enemies come to love them; e.g. Robin Hood. This coin is an example of the strange relationship between monarchs and the rebellious people who keep them in check. This coin features Robin Hood’s lady-love, Maid Marian, also loved by Queen Elizabeth II.

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This is a one-troy-ounce, silver bullion coin which is legal tender in the UK, however, the metal value outstrips the face value of any bullion coin. One-ounce silver coins like this one have a nominal face value of two pounds. Of course, an ounce of raw silver at .999 fineness is worth $19.53 (£16.35) at the time of writing.

The story of Robin Hood is pretty famous, but Maid Marian’s story is not so well known. Because Robin gets all the press, this Maid Marian coin, and a forthcoming Little John coin, are part of the Robin Hood series.

Designed by Jody Clark, the obverse of this coin shows Maid Marian in Sherwood Forest with her bow and arrows. Not only is she remembered as a love interest in the Robin Hood stories, but also as a patron of the people, a spy, and a valuable member of the resistance for her financial contributions. Her family position, natural beauty, and charm won her access to the nobility. Surrounded by “the enemy” she gleaned information to help the resistance.

The reverse of the coin shows the most recent portrait of Queen Elizabeth II with a legend surrounding. The design is also struck in 999.9 gold – with a nominal face value of $119.34 (£100.00), the metal value of the gold coin, however, is $1606.62 (£1346.27).

If you enjoyed this article you might also enjoy the first article in this series about The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest.

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