Wonderfully reminiscent of the period it portrays, the Basilisk of Vienna is the fitting first coin in the Austrian Mint’s evocative series, Austrian Tales and Legends. Struck in 925 Sterling silver in proof quality with a maximum mintage of 40,000, this coin comes in a case complete with a numbered certificate of authenticity and protective slipcase.
Part lizard, part toad, part rooster, the Basilisk, as legend has it, lived under a baker’s shop in Schönlaterngasse in medieval Vienna, shown in its present form on the obverse of this marvelous 10 euro silver coin. To look into the Basilisk’s eyes meant instant death until a brave baker’s apprentice, in return for the hand of the baker’s daughter, turned the terrifying beast to stone with the help of a mirror that confronted the Basilisk with its own horrible appearance. This scene is vividly depicted on the coin’s reverse.
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