Famous Composers Australian Silver Coins
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Music has always been an integral part of culture and history. Throughout the years many remarkable talented artists, composers and musicians both, have graced the human ear with some of the most beautiful pieces of music. In order to commemorate the profound contributions of some the western world’s most well-loved master composers, the Perth Mint of Australia released a set of five, one-ounce coins silver coins that showcase some of the finest Western composers (a series which ran for three years, beginning in 2009 and ending in 2011). Made from 99.9% silver in proof quality finish, these highly detailed and meticulously crafted coins feature five of the world’s greatest composers and musicians in a lifelike high-relief portrait accompanied by fragments of their pieces set against a background of mirror-finished silver.
Intially minted in 2009, with a new artist featured every year, the obverse side of the coin depicts a portrait of Queen Elizabeth II, also in high-relief, specially designed by the artist Ian Maklouf, and bearing the legends: ELIZABETH II TUVALU, along with the coin’s year of of mintage, as well as its face value, a feature that remains a constant throughout the whole five-coin series.
The series kicks off in 2009 with the portrait of legendary composer Felix Mendelssohn. Shown in profile against a stylized background of a large treble clef with a fragment of one of his musical compositions, it is one of the most artistic plain proof silver coins ever to be released by the Perth Mint, and perhaps the only bullion coin in the world to feature the exact composition piece of the featured artist. His name, as well as the year of his birth and death (1809 – 1947) is also inscribed on the reverse, along with the Perth Mint’s iconic ‘P’ mintmark, delicately incorporated into the design.
The second coin the series, minted in 2010 features the inimitable Frederic Chopin. Shown in profile in his more mature bearing, he is set against a background of a large treble clef, along with a fragment of one of his many compositions. His name, as well as the year of his birth and death (1810 – 1849) is also inscribed near the coin’s right-part rim. The Perth Mint’s mintmark is also subtly included in the design to prove as ‘authentication’ of its official mintage and proof-quality make.
The third coin in the series, also minted in 2010 features a frontal portrait of composer Robert Schumann set against a background featuring a large treble clef and a fragmentary piece of his composition. His name as well as the year of his birth and death (1810 – 1856) is also indicated, along with a subtle inclusion of the Perth Mint’s historic mintmark.
The 2011 issue of the Great Composers silver bullion coin series initiated with the depiction of composer and pianist Gustav Mahler, depicted in profile at the mature age of 42. It is set against a background featuring a large treble clef along with accompanying musical sheet notations of his composition. His name and the year of his birth and death (1860 – 1911) are also inscribed on the reverse, along with a subtly incorporated mintmark.
The last of the coins, similarly minted in 2011 for the completion of the series featured acclaimed musician and composer Franz Liszt, here depicted in profile in his elder years, set against a background featuring a large treble clef and a fragment of his musical compositions. His name, as well as the years of his birth and death (1811 – 1886) is also indicated alongside a subtly included mintmark. Every coin in the Great / Famous Composers series is only limited to a number of 5, 000 issues and has widely become one of the most celebrated commemorative coins even created by the Perth Mint.
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