British Antarctic Territory 2008 - World’s First Antarctic Coin - Proof Sterling Silver

Product Code: L6675800

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Coin Highlights

  • 2008 Proof Sterling Silver
  • Issued on behalf of the British Antarctic Territory
  • Issue: 10,000
  • Unique presentation box and certificate
  • Also available as: Uncirculated Cupro Nickel


Pobjoy Mint brings you the World’s First Real Antarctic coin.  Never before has any Antarctic territory approved the release of a legal tender commemorative coin, although there have been coins from the parent countries of different Territories; no true Antarctic coin has been released before.  

To commemorate the Centenary of the Granting of the Letters Patent, Pobjoy Mint is thrilled to announce a fabulous collector's proof sterling silver coin on behalf of the British Antarctic Territory.

The World’s First Antarctic coin depicts the British Antarctic Territory Coat of Arms which was first granted in 1952.  The arms consist of a shield bearing a flaming torch on a wavy background indicating the sea.  On the right, a golden lion stands on a grass floor representing the United Kingdom and on the left an Emperor penguin stands on an ice floor representing the native wildlife in the Territory.  The crest depicts RRS Discovery, the research ship used by Robert Falcon Scott and Ernest Shackleton on their first journey of the Antarctic and the motto Research and Discovery reflects the aims of the British Antarctic Survey, which since 1943 has undertaken the majority of Britain’s scientific research on and around the Antarctic continent.  The obverse of the coin bears a fine effigy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, designed by Ian Rank-Broadley FRBS FSNAD.

Issued in Unc. Cupro Nickel and Proof Sterling Silver, each precious metal coin has been carefully struck four times to attain the famous Pobjoy proof finish, producing a glorious mirror-finish background with the design sculpted in striking relief.  

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The British Antarctic Territory is situated in Antarctica and lies south of latitude 60°S and between longitudes 20° and 80°W.  The Territory comprises the Antarctic Peninsula with all adjacent islands, the South Orkney and South Shetland Islands and the Weddell Sea, as well as the landmass extending to the South Pole.

After the discovery of the South Shetland Islands in 1819 by Captain W. Smith, Antarctic explorers followed in quick succession with Edward Bransfield discovering the Antarctic Peninsula in 1820 and Captain G. Powell taking possession of the South Orkney Islands in 1821.  It was not until 1908 however that Britain registered its first claim to the Antarctic Territory by Letters Patent – a legal document granted by the Monarch declaring sovereignty over the Territory that is today the British Antarctic Territory.  The Territory was governed as three separate dependencies; Graham Land, the South Orkneys and the South Shetlands – administered from Stanley by the Governor of the Falkland Islands.

This coin was originally issued in Unc. Cupro Nickel, Proof Sterling Silver and both 1/25oz and 1/5oz Proof Fine 999.9 Gold.

Metal Proof Sterling Silver
Diameter 38.60mm
Weight 28.28gms
Issue Limit 10,000

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