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Introduced in 1685, the playing card money of New France is one of the most interesting chapters in the story of Canadian currency, but few examples survive today. This four-piece collectible is a card-shaped tribute to an unusual currency that circulated in
New France. It’s a fascinating glimpse of Canada’s early past—one that gives a sense of the challenges and shortages faced by a growing colony.
- Each coin contains 1.5 oz of .9999 fine Silver.
- Protected in a mint-issued maroon box and accompanied by a certificate of authenticity.
- Each set comes with a free Royal Canadian Mint-branded set of playing cards.
- Mintage of 1,250 sets worldwide.
- Obverse: Features a repeating pattern of the four suit symbols and the effigy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II by Susanna Blunt.
- Reverse: Designs vary.
- Guaranteed by the Canadian government.
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All four rectangular coins bear original art by artist Trevor Tennant, who drew inspiration from the 18th century Lionet and Provence Pattern of court cards. Each reverse mimics the period style of the playing cards that were used as currency in New France. It features full color over the engraved depiction of a King from one of four suits: spades, hearts, diamonds and clubs. The King of Diamonds (Julius Caesar) holds an authoritative baton in one hand, and in the other, a scepter that symbolizes imperial power.
The King of Clubs (Alexander the Great) is a confident king who holds a dagger-like sword in his right hand, and a scepter in his left.
The King of Hearts (Charlemagne) wears a cloak edged with a scarf-like pattern, while the fleur-de-lis (a symbol of the French monarch) is visible throughout. The King of Spades (the biblical David) wears a full-length, fur-lined robe. He holds a sword in one hand and in the other, an orb that signifies having the world in one’s hand.
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