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Category: World Coins


W049 (See also W045)

Silver Proof, AU

38 mm (1-1/2”), 31.1 grams

HISTORY: The Cook Islands are a group of 15 islands north of New Zealand in the Pacific Ocean. Their currency is based on the New Zealand dollar ($NZ) and is minted by several mints worldwide. The population of Cook Islands is about 85% Māori or Māori mix.

OBVERSE: “ELIZABETH II COOK ISLANDS 1981” (1926–2022) encircles the profile of a young Elizabeth II (1926–2022), Queen of the United Kingdom and all other Commonwealth realms, including Cook Island subjects.

REVERSE: On the reverse is a Māori carving depicting Tangaroa, god of the sea (see detail). At the lower right of Tangaroa’s foot is the Franklin Mint logo, followed by “JB,” the engraver’s initials. The coin’s denomination, “$1”, flanks the sculpture, while 15 stars are arrayed around the rim, representing the islands of Cook Islands.

EDGE: The edge is smooth with two inscriptions at 12:00 and 6:00 o’clock, “THE ROYAL WEDDING” and “JULY 29-1981.” The issuance of this coin was in honor of the marriage of Prince Charles (1948--) to Lady Diana Spencer (1961—1997), which was celebrated throughout the Commonwealth.

Detail of Tangaroa Sculpture