€15 Silver Proof Coin 2007
A Classic Design Making its Debut on Ireland's Coinage
In 1928 Ivan Meštrović, considered to be one of the greatest sculptors in the world, prepared an elegant and beautiful design as an entry in the competition for the design of the 1928 Irish Free State coinage. Unfortunately, because of difficulty in contacting him in the United States, his design arrived too late for consideration. The Chairman of the Design Committee, Irish poet William Butler Yeats, subsequently wrote “He made one magnificent design and, on discovering that the date had passed, gave it to the Irish Free State with great generosity.” Throughout the last eight years various attempts have been made to utilise this beautiful design. It was considered for military medals and banknotes. Since 1963, it has been used as the seal of the Central Bank of Ireland. However, it had never been used on a coin as its creator intended, until 2007. The design is known as ‘Girl with Harp’ and it depicts an elegant female harpist playing the Dalway harp. The strong and perfectly balanced design was reproduced with the permission and co-operation of the Meštrović foundation in Croatia. The reverse of this magnificent coin bears a motif combining a shamrock with the squares of the Croatian national crest. An Irish harp is finely engraved into one of the shamrock leaves on the Irish coin design. This design was created by Damir Matauši?, a noted Croatian artist and coin designer. In the spirit of co-operation with Croatia, where Ivan Meštrović was born, a sister-coin was produced by the Croatian Monetary Institute Limited, with an identical obverse, which bears the denomination 150 Kuna. The Croatian crest appears on one of the squares of the Croatian Coin to complete these complementary designs. In total, 12,000 pieces of the above coins were minted by the Croatian Monetary Institute Limited. The Central Bank & Financial Services Authority of Ireland had 10,00 coins produced with the Irish reverse and the Croatian National Bank had only 2,000 pieces produced with the Croatian reverse. Each country issued a limited edition double box set containing one each of the Irish and Croatian versions of the coin. The Croatian National Bank produced 1,000 pieces of the double box set containing the Irish and Croatian coins in a navy leather box with a dark blue insert card, and 1,000 pieces of the 150 Kuna coin boxed individually in a navy single box with a complementary insert card. The Central Bank & Financial Services Authority of Ireland produced 1,000 pieces of the double box set in a green leather box with a green insert card and 8,000 pieces of the €15 coin boxed individually in a green single box with a complementary insert card.
|Designer Reverse||Ivan Meštrovic|