The 75th Anniversary of the Liberation of the Netherlands is being commemorated on the Royal Canadian Mint’s new fine silver coin. The issuing of coins recognizing the sacrifice of Canada’s veterans is a time-honoured practice by the Royal Canadian Mint. Netherlands Ambassador Henk van der Zwan had the honour of striking the first coin.
“Having been in Amsterdam on Remembrance Day and Liberation Day in 2019, I was struck by the stoicism and solemnity of the Dutch people when looking back on the Occupation,” shared Product Manager Jamie Desrochers. “They acknowledge the past and learn from it, passing the lessons down to each new generation. Still today, they have a great respect for the Canadians, Americans, Polish, and British who contributed to the Liberation.”
The new coin is illustrated by artist Pandora Young, with a scene showcasing the emotion of those that rediscovered their freedom as a result of service and sacrifice of the Canadian Army.
The illustration includes a Canadian soldier surrounded by children as his tank parades down the street of a Dutch city centre. As a display of gratitude, one child is offering the soldier a tulip. This symbolizes a gesture that has been annually repeated by the Netherlands since the end of the Second World War.
The unbreakable friendship between the Netherlands and Canada is represented through thousands of tulips that bloom in Ottawa to this day.
Engraver, Matt Bowen, explained, “I’m so honoured to be working on the Liberation of the Netherlands coin because of the special relationship Canada shares with the Dutch. I grew up in rural Ontario with a high Dutch immigrant population, and I remember the harrowing stories my friends would tell me of their grandparents struggling to survive under the Occupation.”
He added, “Those stories stayed with me. On an artistic level, I was thrilled to get this project because of the technical challenges of sculpting children’s faces. A child’s face is plump and full of expression, and when you add the architecture in the background, this coin has it all. Really, it was a wonderful exercise in sculpting a layered relief despite having a height of only 0.35 mm to achieve this scene.”
The new coin is a collectable, along with many others, and is available for the public to purchase. Other coins launching this month include:
- The 2020 $50 Fine Silver Coin – Maple Leaves in Motion, designed by artist Joel Kimmel
- Two new egg-shaped coins by Ukrainian-Canadian artists: Dave Melnychuk’s coloured 2020 $20 Fine Silver Coin – Traditional Pysanka and Nathalie Kit’s traditionally-engraved
- 2020 $250 Pure Gold Coin – Tree of Life Pysanka;
- The 2020 1/10th oz. Pure Gold Coin – Tribute to Alex Colville: 1967 Dollar, featuring Colville’s iconic flying goose design created in honour of Canada’s centennial;
- The 2020 $10 Fine Silver Coin – O Canada! Polar Bears, designed by artist Claude Thivierge;
- The 2020 $5 Fine Silver Coin – Moments to Hold: Celebrating 100 Years of the RCMP, revisiting a classic Ago Aarand design;
- The 2020 $25 Fine Silver Piedfort – Timeless Icons: Polar Bear, featuring the artwork of Pierre Leduc; and,
- The crystal-enhanced 2020 $5 Fine Silver Coin – Birthstones: March, featuring the artwork of Pandora Young.
Mintages, pricing, and full background information for each collectable coin can be found at www.mint.ca.