History, heraldry, stunning art and limited edition collectability beautifully combine to make this ten ounce fine silver $100 coin one of the most interesting offerings from the Royal Canadian Mint in 2019. The design dates back to the pre-confederation Province of Canada circa 1841-1867, which saw Upper Canada (Ontario) and Lower Canada (Quebec) join in one political entity with a central government. In fact, the original parliament buildings of Canada which were completed in 1866 were initially built for the Province of Canada, and later used for the new country after Confederation in 1867. Mintage is limited to just 900 coins. GST/HST exempt.
The design captures some of the finest art of the Victorian era as it was used on the Great Seal of the Province of Canada.
Before 1841, Upper and Lower Canada each had their own seals. The Great Seal of the Province of Canada placed these seals side-by-side, held up by two allegorical figures with their arms around each other’s shoulders. Over top of the entire scene is the Royal Arms of Queen Victoria, held by the lion representing England and the unicorn representing Scotland.
Every element in this detailed design is symbolic. Here are some of the important symbols: Lower Canada seal (engraved by Thomas Major in 1793): A graceful oak tree on the bank of a river overlooking several ships at anchor, with a typical Quebecois town featuring a church steeple in the background. Upper Canada seal (from when the province was established in 1792): A peace-pipe or calumet crossed with a sword and an anchor and bound by an olive crown. The Union Jack is visible in the upper right-hand corner and two cornucopia decorate the bottom. Topping the design, to the left of the Union Jack, is the Royal Crown. The royal arms of Queen Victoria (1837): Victoria’s shield, held up by the lion (England) and the unicorn (Scotland).
The outer rim includes the Latin text from the original seal: “VICTORIA D.G. BRITANNIARUM REGINA FID. DEF.” and “SIGILLUM PROVINCIAE CANADAE.” The obverse features the effigy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II by Susanna Blunt.