Silver Proof, AU
32.31 mm (1-1/4”), 14.14 grams
HISTORY: Cyprus was long held by British rule, but in August 1960 the island nation was given its independence, creating a new government jointly empowered by both the Greeks and Turks. On October 13, 1975, the Turkish Federated State of Cyprus was formed, separating from the Republic of Cyprus, claiming the northern portion of the island. They were not recognized by either the Republic of Cyprus or the United Nations.
OBVERSE: The Cyprus coat of arms is a shield emblazoned with a dove of peace holding an olive branch in its beak. The date, 1960, is the year that the British gave independence to Cyprus. A laurel wreath surrounds the shield. “KYΠPOΣ” is followed by “KIBRIS CYPRUS 1975” (which is “Cyprus” in Greek, Turkish and English).
REVERSE: The reverse of this 500 mils coin shows Hercules sitting upon the back of the Nemean Lion, which he slew as the 1st of 12 labors. In his right hand he still holds his club, while in his left hand he grasps a cornucopia. The popular theme goes back to ancient times (see inset).
Engraved by Antis Ioannides, this commemorative coin was produced by the Royal Mint, Llantrisant, UK. Total mintage was 10,000, proof only.