Australia launches Anzac Centenary coin

Posted on on 22 February 2014
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Australia has joined Canada and the UK in launching a commemorative coin to mark the Centenary of the First World War.

The Australian $1 coin features the official logo of the Anzac Centenary, including the image of a soldier, head bowed and rifle reversed in solemn reflection and the words ‘100 Years of Anzac - The Spirit Lives.’ It's rimmed with a motif reflecting the sun’s rays as captured on the Australian Army’s Rising Sun badge.

Australian ministers say the Anzac Centenary will be one of the most important commemorations in the country's history. 

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer, Steven Ciobo, said: “Every time someone looks at this coin it will remind them of the service and sacrifice of our past and present Australian Defence Force members, in particular of those who died in the First World War."

As a self-governing dominion of the British Empire in 1914, Australia immediately declared its support for Britain when war broke out against Germany.

The Great War remains Australia's most costly conflict in terms of deaths and casualties. From a population of under five million, 416,809 men enlisted, of whom more than 60,000 were killed and 156,000 wounded, gassed, or taken prisoner.

The Royal Australian Mint says it's developed a comprehensive programme for the Centenary, with more coins due to be released to mark significant events and dates from 1914-1918.

Centenary coins are also being produced in Canada and Britain, where there's been criticism of the decision to feature Lord Kitchener and the recruiting slogan 'your country needs you' on the first £2 coin in a commemorative series.

Canada's silver dollar depicts a couple embracing at a railway station, where the first volunteers are boarding a train.

Source: Royal Australian Mint

Images courtesy of the Royal Australian Mint

Posted by: Peter Alhadeff, Centenary News