With a mintage of only 1,815 coins and a truly fascinating backstory, this unique medal is a must for collectors and historians alike. The large 8 oz size allows the exquisite design to be shown in superb detail.
- Contains 8.038 oz. of .999 fine Silver.
- Exact recreation of the Waterloo Medal designed by Benedetto Pistrucci that took 30 years to complete.
- Comes in custom box with a certificate of authenticity and a commemorative booklet.
- Obverse: The heads of the four allied nations are featured at the center: Prince Regent George IV, Francis II of Austria, Alexander I of Russia and Frederick William II of Prussia. Surrounding these busts is an allegorical representation of the Treaty of Peace that emerged from the battle (the Latin inscription ‘Federe Junctis’ alluding to the treaty itself).
- Reverse: Represents the mythical ‘Battle of the Giants’, where the giants are said to have unsuccessfully challenged the Olympian Gods. In this composition, Pistrucci depicted 19 figures struck down by the thunderbolts of Jupiter – 19 for each year of the Napoleonic Wars.
- Guaranteed by the Royal Mint.
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When the Battle of Waterloo brought more than two decades of the Napoleonic Wars to an end, a welcome period of peace settled over Europe. A fitting tribute, the Waterloo Campaign Medal was struck for all who fought in the battle. But another accolade was commissioned, a second, magnificent medal designed by talented engraver, Benedetto Pistrucci, to be presented to the heads of the allied countries and the commanders involved in the battle. Though a masterpiece of minting with a dramatic tale of its own, Pistrucci’s Waterloo Medal went unstruck in his lifetime and for many years beyond.
For the 200th anniversary of that epic battle, The Royal Mint is striking Pistrucci’s work of genius. The ornate medal bears Pistrucci’s original design, inspired by mythology, as you might expect from the creator of the legendary St. George and the dragon that is seen on The Sovereign each year. A life’s work, the medal took Pistrucci more than 30 years to complete yet, sadly, the design could not be struck due to its size, and all due to receive the medal had died.
For 2015, the medal is struck in sterling Silver with an 80 mm diameter, carefully crafted by the Royal Mint, where the design was conceived and perfected. Pistrucci’s design is resplendent in all its glory with the original inscription – unique to this special edition – as wrought by the master engraver’s own hand, for we have revisited his original workings to complete his masterpiece. Explore the story of passion and politics that lies behind this tribute to the men who never received this magnificent honor, and to the great man behind this work of numismatic genius.
The renowned Italian engraver, Benedetto Pistrucci, was commissioned by the Royal Mint to work on new designs for the recoinage of 1816. His most famous design, the legend-inspired St George and the dragon, still adorns the sovereign, the flagship coin of the Royal Mint.
One of the oldest institutions in the world, the Royal Mint began producing coins for England, and eventually Great Britain, more than 1,100 years ago. The mint also produces and exports coins for other countries, as well as military medals, and other products for the British government. The Royal Mint has been witness to the legendary kings and queens, political upheavals, social and governmental progress, and scientific and technological breakthroughs.
The minting of coins began in England around the end of the second century B.C. Around A.D. 650, coins were made by craftsmen called “moneyers” in London. In 886, during the reign of Alfred the Great, the London Mint was designated to be a single institution, though there were many other mints in operation around this time. In 1279 the London Mint was moved to the Tower of London where it remained for the next 500 years. Famed physicist Sir Isaac Newton was the Warden of the Mint in 1696 and as such was responsible for investigating cases of counterfeiting. Three years later he was made Master of the Mint, until his death in 1727, and was responsible for moving England from the Silver standard to the Gold standard in 1717.
The Royal Mint had outgrown its home in the Tower of London so during the 18th century the rickety wooden shacks the mint occupied were rebuilt to accommodate mechanized and rolling mills and coining presses and provide more space. Soon, however, the mint outgrew this new location and in 1809, the mint moved from the Tower of London to an adjacent site in East Smithfield called Tower Hill. By 1899, the Royal Mint was striking 100 million coins a year.
In 1967 it was announced that mint would move from its location at Tower Hill to Llantrisant, Wales, following Parliament’s decision to decimalize currency and in 1968 the first coins were officially struck by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II at the new location in Wales. In 1986, the Royal Mint celebrated 11 centuries of continuous minting. In 2009, the Royal Mint was vested into a government-owned company to provide greater operating and commercial freedom.
One unique aspect of the Royal Mint is a procedure known as the Trial of the Pyx, dates back to 1282 and ensures newly-minted coins meet required government standards. The trials have been held once a each year since their inception and have changed very little over time. These trials are presided over by a judge with a jury of expert assayers and were held at the Palace of Westminster before they were moved to the modern-day site at the Hall of the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths. The ceremony was so named after the boxwood chest in which coins were placed for presentation to the jury.