British Virgin Islands 2010 - 500th Anniversary of the Death of Botticelli - Unc Cupro Nickel Coin

Product Code: L4440700

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Coin Highlights

  • 2010 Unc. Cupro Nickel $1
  • Issued on behalf of the British Virgin Islands
  • Issue: Unlimited
  • Unique presentation pouch


Alessandro di Mariano di Vanni Filipepi was better known as Sandro Botticelli - an Italian painter of the early Renaissance. To commemorate the 500th anniversary of the death of the famous artist, Pobjoy Mint has released this coin on behalf of the British Virgin Islands Government. 

Born in 1445, Botticelli trained initially as a goldsmith and then as an artist in Florence and began his career painting frescoes in churches and cathedrals. In 1481 he was summoned by the Pope to help decorate some of the walls of the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican. His artwork included depictions of the Life of Moses and the Temptation of Christ. Such an invitation shows how highly regarded Botticelli was at that time. Upon his return to Florence, Botticelli began work on what was to become some of his most famous pieces of art including; Venus and Mars and The Birth of Venus.  

​The British Virgin Islands Government has approved the release of two coin designs interpreting The Birth of Venus. The first coin design is a Proof Fine 999.9 1/25oz Gold version of just the stunning Venus in her shell. The second coin design is an artist’s impression of The Birth of Venus and is available in Proof Sterling Silver and Uncirculated Cupro Nickel. Both coin designs have captured the romance of the original artwork, now finely sculpted into precious metal. 

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The Birth of Venus was painted around the year 1485 and is probably one of the most recognised paintings in the world. Housed in Uffizi Gallery in Florence, the life-size painting depicts the goddess Venus having emerged from the sea as a grown woman. She stands on a shell, blown towards shore by the winds; Zephyr and Aura. Venus is joined by one of the Horae, goddesses of the seasons, who hands her a flowered cloak to cover her modesty. The theme is nature and beauty and the overall effect of the painting is romantic. The theme of mythology reflected a different side to Botticelli who until this point in his career was most renowned for his religious artwork.

In the last few years of Botticelli’s life, he had a crisis of expression and his work lost some of the delicate features he was famous for. Botticelli became isolated and depressed and when he died in 1510, his reputation as an artist had been lost in favour of other artists such as Michelangelo and Raphael. It wasn’t until the late 19th Century that his work became appreciated again and his name became one of the most recognised in art history. 

Metal Unc. Cupro Nickel $1
Diameter 38.60mm
Weight 28.28gms
Issue Limit Unlimited

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