The Royal Canadian Mint celebrates decades of innovation with anniversary tributes

by Keith Powell
The Royal Canadian Mint's limited edition Silver Maple Leaf coin with black rhodium plating.

The Royal Canadian Mint's limited edition Silver Maple Leaf coin with black rhodium plating. — Photo courtesy Royal Canadian Mint

Long known for defining the "gold standard" of refining and bullion coin manufacturing, the Royal Canadian Mint is proud to celebrate its Gold and Silver Maple Leaf bullion coins (GML and SML), with a pair of innovative collector coins. Marking its 40th anniversary in 2019, the GML is being honoured with an extra-low mintage 99.99% pure gold kilo coin incorporating finely machined background radial lines, a security feature that is standard to modern GMLs, but which appears for the first time on a Mint kilo coin. The 30 year-old SML is getting its own special anniversary tribute in the form of a 2 oz. pure silver coin, with black rhodium plating surrounding the iconic maple leaf reverse design and the obverse effigy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. These elements dramatically shine out from the coin in their natural silver brilliance.

Always looking to innovate, the Mint is also launching the 2019 $50 Fine Silver Coin – Polar Bears: Mother and Cub, an impressive 5 oz. silver coin shaped in the rough contours of ice floes drifting across an Arctic seascape.  In the coin's centre, Tony Bianco's design of a mother bear and her cub comes to life with the bright contrast of shimmering waters from which the realistically engraved bears are emerging. The same effect is achieved on the obverse, with the effigy of the Queen.

Historic coins are also celebrated this month, starting with a kilo version of the Mint's famous "Voyageur" coin. The 2018 $1 Fine Silver Coin – The Voyageur, features the iconic Emanuel Hahn reverse design of a paddling explorer and guide, which first appeared on the 1935 Silver Dollar issued in celebration of King George V's Silver Jubilee. Recalling the Mint's beginnings as a world-class refiner and celebrating our 110-year history are a pair of 2018-dated British Sovereign reproductions featuring Benedetto Pistrucci's classic engraving of St. George slaying a dragon. This timeless design is found on a 1 oz. fine silver coin plated in pure gold, as well as an exclusive 99.999% pure gold 1 oz. coin. Operating as a branch of Britain's Royal Mint until 1931, the Mint's Ottawa facility produced over 400,000 Sovereigns from 1908 to 1919, each bearing a "C" mint mark to indicate their Canadian origin.       

Other collectibles available now include:

  • The 2018 $20 Fine Silver Coin – First World War Battlefront Series: Armistice of Compiègne, featuring sculptor William McMillan's winged figure design conceived for the 1919 Victory Medal;
  • The 2018 Fine Silver Puzzle Coin Set – Connecting Canadian History (1866-1916), a set of 13 puzzle-shaped coins, surrounding a central coin, with each piece featuring sepia-toned gold-plated reproductions of historic photographs provided by Library and Archives Canada;
  • The 2018 Royal Canadian Mint State-of-the-Art Set, featuring coins reflecting the Mint's four main businesses: Numismatics, Bullion and Refinery, Canadian Circulation and Foreign Circulation;
  • The 2018 $25 Fine Silver Coin – Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II: Matriarch of the Royal Family, featuring a Bonnie Ross portrait in repoussé-inspired ultra-high relief;
  • The 2019 $200 Pure Gold Coin – Atlantic Puffins, a 1 oz. proof 99.999% pure gold coin designed by Denis Mayer Jr;
  • The 2019 $500 Pure Gold Coin – Birds of Prey: The Golden Eagle, a 5 oz. pure gold coin featuring the artwork of Pierre Leduc;
  • The 2019 $20 Fine Silver Coin – Reflections: Bald Eagle, designed by Julius Csotonyi and featuring a combination of glow-in-the-dark technology and translucent blue enamel;
  • The 2019 $30 Fine Silver Coin – The Wily Wolf, and the 2019 $30 Fine Silver Coin – Canadian Canopy: The Canada Goose, both designed by Emily Damstra;
  • The 2019 $50 Fine Silver Coin – Celebrating Canada's Icons, a 5 oz. coin featuring Patrick Bélanger's artwork enhanced by translucent red enamel;
  • The 2019 5-Ounce Fine Silver Coin – Big Coin Series: 25-Cent Coin, featuring selective gold plating;
  • The 2019 $8 Fine Silver Coin- Brilliant Cherry Blossoms: A Gift of Beauty, featuring the artwork of Anna Bucciarelli;
  • The 2019 $10 Fine Silver Coin – Lunar Year of the Pig, designed by Simon Ng and featuring a specimen finish;
  • The 2018 $3 Fine Silver Coin – The Thirteen Teachings from Grandmother Moon: Freezing Moon, designed by Frank Polson;
  • The crystal-enhanced 2018 $5 Fine Silver Coin – Birthstones: December, featuring a mandala-inspired tanzanite design by artist Pandora Young;
  • The 2019 $20 Fine Silver Coin – Holiday Wreath, designed by Marie-Élaine Cusson and featuring a genuine Venetian glass wreath; and,
  • The 2019 $20 Fine Silver Coin – Mystical Snow Day, a partially coloured and "shadow engraved" collectible designed by artist Steve Hepburn.

Mintages, pricing and full background information on each product can be found on the "Shop" tab of

All of these products can be ordered directly from the Mint at 1-800-267-1871 in Canada, 1-800-268-6468 in the US, or online at The coins are also available at the Royal Canadian Mint's boutiques in Ottawa and Winnipeg, as well as through our global network of dealers and distributors, including participating Canada Post outlets.

About the Royal Canadian Mint

The Royal Canadian Mint is the Crown corporation responsible for the minting and distribution of Canada's circulation coins. An ISO 9001 certified corporation, the Mint is recognized as one of the largest and most versatile mints in the world, offering a wide range of specialized, high quality coinage products and related services on an international scale. For more information on the Mint, its products and services, visit

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