The Silver Elephant Coin from the African Wildlife Coin Series appeals to coin collectors around the world for its depiction of the world's largest land animal, the African elephant.
- Each coin contains 32.15 oz of .999 fine Silver.
- Mintage of only 1,000 coins.
- Obverse: Bears the heraldic symbol of the Somalian Republic, “2012” and the monetary value of “2,000 Shillings.”
- Reverse: Exhibits a majestic Somalian Elephant roaming through tall grass. On the left side of the coin is the Year of the Dragon privy mark.
- Guaranteed by the Bavarian State Mint in Germany.
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As one of the only bullion coins in the world to change its design annually, the Silver Elephant series is certainly unique. The reverse of the Silver Elephant always features one or more elephants in their natural habitat. Since 2004, the obverse has featured the seal of Somalia, showing two leopards supporting a shield and five-pointed star. Beneath them is a ribbon draped over two crossed lances and two cross palm fronds. Prior to 2004, the obverse depicted the seal of Zambia.
Silver Elephants are minted at what is said to be the oldest company in Munich. Established in 1158, the Bavarian State Mint, locally referred to as Das Bayerisches Hauptmünzamt, was established under the authorization of Heinrich dem Löwen. The mint is known for its quality and high standards in manufacturing collector coins, seals and medals.
The ever-changing design is not the only thing unique about this Silver bullion coin. From 1999 until 2003, the Silver Elephant coin series was produced by the Bavarian State Mint for Zambia, a landlocked country in southern Africa. In 2004, the mint transferred the series’ legend to the Somalia Republic, a coastal nation located on the horn of Africa. However, experts have questioned the validity of this authorization. Somalia does not recognize Silver Elephants as legal tender and the coins have never been distributed by the Central Bank of Somalia. Much of the confusion can be attributed to the political turmoil and strife that is currently afflicting Somalia. Civil war also plagued the country, interfering with Somalia’s efforts to work towards building a federal parliamentary republic. These circumstances are likely reasons for the lack of sufficient documentation to support the Bavarian State Mint’s claims of authorization. Despite these issues, some experts suggest that the ambiguity surrounding Somalia’s approval only adds to the Silver Elephant coin’s value.