Canada 2012 Great Explorers #1 - Vikings Norsemen and Longboat $200 1/2 Ounce .9999 Pure Gold Proof GX
List Price: $1,399.95 - Savings: $300.00
This item is available to order
explorers in longboats discovered North America 500 years before
Columbus - now discover these fierce Norsemen on this pure gold proof!
Canada launches a new series - The
Great Explorers - just as the Vikings
launched their longboats from Greenland's icy shores a thousand years
ago, hoping to find greener lands further west! And find them
did, establishing a settlement on the northern tip of Newfoundland,
right here in North America! A trio of Norse warriors (look for the one
hidden in the ship's bow) wade ashore, armed with axes to fend off the skraelings, or Native
as they called them. On this gold gem, deft artistry and cutting-edge
craftsmanship bring ultra-crisp definition to the ever-popular Norseman
theme! The new purity of 99.99%, the half troy ounce weight, the high $200
face value, and being the first of a new series make this
low-mintage gold proof a must-have work of art!
Please read on for articles about the Vikings in North America;
Seafaring Warriors; and Viking Arms and Armor.
gold and purer gold! The Royal Canadian Mint has increased the weight
of the $200 Gold Proof to a full 1/2 troy ounce, and increased the
purity from 22 karat to 99.99% pure gold! Combined with the popular
Viking theme and being the first
of a new series, we heartily recommend this as a
buy-and-hold investment, and predict a fast sell-out!
The Vikings in North
The first Europeans to explore the New World were known most infamously
as brutal warriors, and only more recently as great explorers. The
Vikings were seafaring Norse explorers whose great expansion spanned
the eighth through the eleventh centuries. Over the course of three
hundred years, they would explore and build settlements across northern
Europe, Great Britain, Ireland, Greenland, Iceland, and the East Coast
of North America.
characterization as brutal warriors probably has its roots in early
attacks on the British and Irish coasts. The Norsemen’s
longships - seafaring war galleys oared by dozens of warriors - were
ideal for performing lightning-fast raids on unsuspecting vessels and
coastal villages. The Norsemen who went to Iceland, Greenland, and
North America, however, were generally farmers, tradespeople, and
explorers traveling by knarr
(merchant ship) and seeking natural resources.
accounts suggest that it was a Norse explorer and ship captain named
Bjarni Herjolfsson who first spotted the shores of the New World in the
late tenth century, when a storm forced him off course between Iceland
and Greenland. He told his compatriots in Greenland about a great
forested shore; fifteen years later, Leif Eriksson, son of Eric the
Red, used Bjarni’s description to find this land once again.
called it Vinland, Wineland - a land where grapes grew wild.
Eriksson’s discovery triggered many more years of exploration
Scholars today believe that Vinland probably referred to a broad region
encompassing Newfoundland, Labrador, and the eastern seaboard south to
at least Maine. L’Anse aux Meadows in Newfoundland is the
earliest known European settlement in the New World. The small Viking
camp of fewer than ten buildings was likely a base camp for summer
explorations farther afield. Today, four of the Norse buildings at the
L’Anse aux Meadows site have been reconstructed. Special
showcase the many artifacts discovered there, highlighting the
lifestyle of these intrepid early explorers. The site was declared a UNESCO
World Heritage Site in 1978.
This year marks important changes to the Annual
$200 Gold Proof
- the purity has been increased to .9999 fine gold, and the net weight
of gold increased to a full one half troy ounce. Please note that the
Viking Norsemen marks the start of a new series, the Great
Explorers, and the first of a series is nearly always the
most sought-after down the line. Combined with its extremely popular Viking
low mintage, and its relative affordability, we heartily
that any savvy collector or investor add this to his or her numismatic
finely engraved and dynamic depiction Norse Viking explorers,
armed with Dane axes, coming ashore at L’Anse aux Meadows,
with their longboat on the shore. The
date and denomination are also indicated.
here for more great gold coins! Reverse
A frosted cameo portrait of her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II of England,
in profile facing right.
This portrait, the fourth effigy of the queen to appear on Canadian
coinage, was executed by the artist Susanna Blunt. The legend ELIZABETH
II D. G. REGINA ("Elizabeth II, Queen by the Grace of God") and
mint mark also appear.
coins highlighting history!
The coin is encapsulated inside a burgundy leatherette, clamshell-style
presentation case, lined with black velvet and protected by a black
outer box. An
individually-numbered certificate of authenticity is included.
Fine (24-Karat Pure) Gold
Seafaring Warriors The
Vikings are the Norse (Scandinavian) explorers, warriors, merchants,
and pirates who raided and settled in wide areas of Europe from the
late eighth to the early eleventh century. They burst out of
Scandinavia in the late 700s, seeking both wealth and lands to
colonize. These Norsemen used their famed longships to travel as far
east as Constantinople and the Volga River in Russia, and as far west
as Iceland, Greenland, and Newfoundland, and as far south as Al
Andalus. This period of Viking expansion – known as the
Age – forms a major part of the medieval history of
Britain, Ireland and the rest of Europe in general.
The Vikings sailed most of the North Atlantic, reaching south to North
Africa and east to Russia, Constantinople and the Middle East, as
looters, traders, colonists, and mercenaries. Vikings under Leif
Ericson, heir to Erik the Red, reached North America, and set up a
short-lived settlement in present-day L'Anse aux Meadows, Newfoundland
and Labrador, Canada.
Once seen by the classical mindset as northern barbarians, the
historical image of the Vikings now views them as aspirational,
adventurous people, with ingenuity in ship and town construction, and a
proficiency as exploring seafarers and traders to match. And of course,
they were the greatest warriors of their age!
Viking Arms and Armor According
to custom, all free Norse men were required to own weapons, as well as
permitted to carry them at all times. These arms were also indicative
of a Viking's social status: a wealthy Viking would have a complete
ensemble of a helmet, shield, chainmail shirt, and sword. A typical
bondi (freeman) was more likely to fight with a spear and shield, and
most also carried a seax as a utility knife and side-arm. Bows were
used in the opening stages of land battles, and at sea, but tended to
be considered less "honorable" than a hand weapon. Vikings were
relatively unusual for the time in their use of axes as a main battle
weapon. The Húscarls, the elite guard of King Cnut (and
King Harold II) were armed with two-handed axes which could split
shields or metal helmets with ease.
The Dane Axe is a type of polearm, primarily used during the transition
between the European Viking Age and early Middle Ages. Other names for
the weapon include Danish Axe, English Long Axe, and Hafted Axe. The
blade itself was reasonably light and forged very thin, making it
superb for cutting. The thickness of the body above the edge is as thin
as 2 mm. Many of these axes were constructed with a reinforced bit,
typically of a higher carbon steel to facilitate a harder, sharper
edge. Average weight of an axe this size is between 2 and 4
(1 and 2 kg). This complex construction results in a lively and quick
weapon with devastating cutting ability.
All of this calls to mind that most famous paean to the Norse, Led
We come from the land of the ice and snow,
From the midnight sun where the hot
The hammer of the gods, we'll drive our
ships to new lands,
To fight the horde, singing and crying:
"Valhalla, I am coming!"
On we sweep with threshing oar,
Our only goal will be the western shore.
How soft your fields so green, can
whisper tales of gore,
Of how we calmed the tides of war. We
are your overlords.