Inspirational Ladies
Three Graces





Coin Details

Origin/Country: Great Britain
Design Description: Crown Medal
Item Description: Copper Crown 1879 Dated INA Retro Issue X#81b
Full Grade: PCGS PF 66
Owner: coinsbygary

Set Details

Custom Sets: Inspirational Ladies
Competitive Sets: This coin is not competing in any sets.

Owner Comments:

For their 2001 auction, Spink & Sons commissioned INA ltd of Birmingham to strike various fantasy coins. Many of these fantasy coins featured designs that were never officially issued by any governmental entity. My medal is designed by Donald Golder and features an image of Queen Victoria on the obverse and the Three Graces on the reverse. This crown-sized (38mm) 1879 dated medal was struck in silver and bronze. The bronze version has a Krause catalog number of X#81a and a mintage of 790.

No crowns were officially issued by the UK in 1879. Furthermore, the likeness of Queen Victoria on my medal has never been used on a coin. It has, however, been used on a postage stamp. The 1840 one penny stamp, nicknamed "Penny Black," is the world's first adhesive postage stamp. It features a left-facing profile bust of Queen Victoria. The medal's obverse legend combined with the reverse translated from Latin reads, "Victoria by God's grace makes them become one." The Three Graces on the reverse reinterpreted from Greek mythology by the original engraver, William Wyon, represent Ireland, England, and Scotland.

The 1801 "Act of the Union" united Great Britain (England and Scotland) and Ireland under the United Kingdom. William Wyon's Three Graces was designed to appeal to a sense of national pride after the hard times relating to the UK's defeat of Napoleon. His pattern coin dating 1817 was never issued. With only 50 known patterns, this coin is occasionally offered at auction in the six figures. Check out this beauty offered by Heritage.

Though my fantasy coin isn't an exact replica of the original pattern, the imagery is the same. Instead of a rudder and palm frond, my medal displays a ship on the waters to allegorize English dominance over the seas. Instead of using a lyre to represent Ireland, this fantasy coin uses a shamrock.

In Greek mythology, the Three Charites or Graces were generally known for fertility. They are believed to be the daughters of Zeus and Hera. One is named Aglaia for Brightness, another is named Euphrosyne for Joyfulness, and the third Thalia for Bloom.

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