This is the 2020 Gold Proof Megalosaurus Fifty Pence Coin. The is first release in the Royal Mint's Tales of the Earth Series is The Dinosauria Collection. The other two 50p coins (featuring the Hylaeosaurus and the Iguanodon) will be released later in the year.
Only 360 of these gold proof coins will be issued, making them highly sought after.
The coins in The Dinosauria Collection feature the Megalosaurus, Hylaeosaurus and Iguanodon; the three species of dinosaur that paleontologist Richard Owen famously referred to in 1842 when announcing the discovery of a new animal, the dinosaur.
The discovery of the Megalosaurus dates all the way back to the 17th century when a femur bone was discovered in England. It was thought to be part of a giant human and was initially referred to as a Scrotum humanum.
Palaeontologist William Buckland did further research on the fossils and bones and revealed that they did not belong to a mythical giant, but were actually a dinosaur from the Jurassic Period. He named it 'Megalosaurus' meaning 'giant lizard'.
The Megalosaurus lived approximately 166 million years ago.
We first heard about the coin through The Privy Council. This is made up of senior politicians who advise the Queen on such matters as bank holidays, coinage and lively company statuses. The Royal Mint have to submit any new coin designs to The Privy Council for approval. The information is then announced on the Privy Council website.
The Jody Clark effigy of Queen Elizabeth II appears on the obverse of the coin. This is the fifth coinage portrait.
The reverse was designed by the palaeo-artist Robert Nicholls. It was designed in conjunction with the Natural History Museum to ensure the depiction was anatomically accurate.
The coin shows a Megalosaurus accompanied by the inscription:-
“MEGALOSAURUS” and “BUCKLAND 1824”
|Gold Weight Troy Ounces||0.456|
|Fineness / Carat||0.917 / 22|
|Obverse Designer||Jody Clark|
|Reverse Designer||Robert Nicholls|
|Mint / Brand||The Royal Mint|
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