2023 Canada Silver $20 Generations: Mi'kmaq Creation Story

2023 Canada Silver $20 Generations: Mi'kmaq Creation Story

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The Creation story—the story of how life began for all things—is a foundational element of the Mi’kmaw culture and teachings, one that provides meaning and purpose while connecting each new generation to those of the past.

To the Mi’kmaq people, whose homeland (Mi’kma’ki) encompasses much of present-day Atlantic Canada, their creation story expresses traditional beliefs, spirituality and core values, and emphasizes their relation with the natural world. According to the Mi’kmaq creation story, there were seven levels of creation that began with Kisu’lk (the Giver of Life, above) and continued with Niskam (Grandfather Sun, within) and Wsitkamu (Mother Earth, below), all represented in the center portion of your coin’s reverse. In the east is the fourth level, is of Kluskap (the first human being) created from a lightning bolt and earth elements. From there, the Mi’kmaq creation story unfolds in the cardinal directions south, west and north across the coin’s reverse that reflects the cyclical nature of the natural world, where everything has its own unique spirit, and where all must work in harmony with one another.

Coin Highlights:
  • Contains 1 oz of .9999 fine Silver.
  • Limited mintage of 5,500 coins.
  • Comes in a black clamshell with a graphic outer box.
  • Obverse: The obverse features a maple leaf pattern and the effigy of Queen Elizabeth II by Susanna Blunt. The obverse also bears a special marking that includes four pearls symbolizing the four effigies that have graced Canadian coins and the double date of her reign.
  • Reverse: Designed by Mi’kmaw artist Marcus Gosse (Ala’suinu - Traveller), your coin’s reverse illustrates the Mi’kmaq creation story, which explains the seven levels of creation of life. The first three levels of creation are combined in the center portion: the first level is Kisu’lk, the Giver of Life (above), represented here by the stars of the universe; the second level, represented by the Mi’kmaq eight-pointed star, is Niskam, Grandfather Sun, who puts spirit into life (within); and the third level is Wsitkamu, Mother Earth (under), sustaining life (water, rocks, plants and a moose). In the east and to the right of the center portion, the fourth level shows Kluskap, the first human being, created from a lightning bolt and visited by the eagle Kitpu, messenger to the Giver of Life, and when he leaves a feather falls, which Kluskap catches before it touches the ground, which is symbolic of the sacredness of the eagle feather. Moving in a clockwise direction, the fifth level (south) is Nukami, the grandmother who owes her existence to a rock, she is wise and knowledgeable and brings teachings how to survive, she is with a marten that represents the first meal of meat cooked on the first fire. The sixth level (west) shows Netawansum, the nephew, representing the youth, who owes his existence from elements of the sea, and he holds with a braid of sweetgrass; their second meal of fish. Finally, the seventh level (north) is Nekanakanim-Koosiskw, the mother; she owes her existence to a leaf of a tree, she brings love, understanding and all the colors of the world, while the wigwam represents home. She will teach all her children to share and care for each other. The third meal is made of plants and berries to honor her arrival.
  • Guaranteed by the Royal Canadian Mint.

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The Mi’kmaq creation story expresses the Mi’kmaw worldview and emphasizes the connectedness between all of creation.
Add this 1 oz Silver Generations: Mi'kmaq Creation Story coin to your cart today!

The Royal Canadian Mint
Since 1908, the Royal Canadian Mint has been a world leader in producing high-quality coins. They are most well known for the Silver and Gold Maple Leaf coins, but they have also produced numerous award-winning coins and are one of the most innovative mints in the world. The RCM releases new, high-quality coins every month. Browse new and upcoming Royal Canadian Mint products frequently to see updates.

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