The Canadian mint has proven itself to be one of the most innovative and prolific mints in the world. Their latest offering again does little to disprove that. The pure silver Tiger and Dragon Yin and Yang coin evokes images of ancient Chinese culture to make an impressive collector's coin.
The first thing you immediately notice about the coin is the square hole in the middle of the coin reminiscent of old Chinese and Japanese Cash or Wu-Shu coins(coins like these were minted on and off for over two thousand years). At either end of the hole are two animals closely associated with eastern lore : the tiger and the dragon. The two opposing forces seemingly ready to engage each other in battle at any moment, the tiger flashing it's brilliant teeth and the dragon proudly displaying it's razor sharp claws.
Between the two majestic creatures is a yin-yang symbol is situated just above the square hole at the top. The Yin-yang represents harmony in nature. Two perfectly opposite forces that together bring balance to each other and forms a more complete whole. The elemental theme is carried even further where you can see stylized representations of water underneath each of the animals. Fire appears around the yin-yang symbol, and in ancient numismatics the square hole in coins was representative of elemental earth.
Much like the four squares appearing in the coin the four elements of nature are all represented. On the bottom half of the obverse of the coin appears a stylized representation of air. Captures in mid flight, one on either side of the square hole, are two phoenixes. The phoenix is the living embodiment of opposing forces. Rising from it's own ashes to be reborn again, it too represents the duality of nature.
Numbers also form an important feature for this coin. The coin is denominated as eight Dollars. There are three different animals important to eastern culture on the coin and everything on the coin appears in pairs. Two , three , six and eight are considered lucky numbers in Chinese culture. Six is especially considered as lucky in business as it sounds very similar to the character 流 (liú), which translates roughly as “to flow and also sounds like luck. The number 8 is very lucky as it's Chinese character(八 ) is pronounced as “bā” which sounds similar to prosper or wealth.
To amplify this the coin will have a special limited mintage of 6 888 coins. The coin will also be sold by the Canadian mint for $98.88 CAD, and will be limited to two coins per customer.
Composed of .9999 Fineness silver the coin measures 36mm and weighs in at 20.86gram. All 6 888 coins will be struck in proof and issued in a maroon clamshell case with a numbered certificate of authenticity included.