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Queen to share Pacific nation’s coins with Star Wars characters


Queen to share Pacific nation’s coins with Star Wars characters

Characters from the Star Wars space epic are to appear on a nation’s currency for the first time.

The coins will feature Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader and Yoda

By Paul Chapman in Wellington

Darth Vader, Luke Skywalker, Yoda and a cast of other heroes and villains from a galaxy far, far away, will join the Queen on coins issued by the South Pacific island state of Niue.

A set of 40 coins is being produced by the New Zealand Mint.

As legal tender, the coins will have a face value of NZ$2 (£1), but the silver content in each is worth considerably more than that.

The coins are primarily aimed at collectors and investors around the world in a bid to boost Niue’s flagging government coffers.

Sets of four, each containing 1oz of silver, will sell for NZ$469 (£235).

Others struck in silver-plated base metal will cost much less.

"You wouldn’t want to go and spend them because they’re only worth $2, but the value is much more than that," said Chris Kirkness of the New Zealand Mint.

"No one is going to go buy an ice-cream with them.

"Traditionally, who would buy these would be coin collectors, but this product opens up the market as a gift product and for enthusiasts of Star Wars," he told Fairfax newspapers’ website.

"You know Star Wars if you’re seven or 70."

While Star Wars characters are depicted in colour on the reverse of the new coins, a traditional effigy of the Queen by the sculptor Raphael Maklouf dominates the obverse.

Underlining the target market, the first issue goes on display at the American Numismatics Association’s show in Chicago next week.

Further coins will be released until 2014.

Fans of George Lucas’s classic films are expected to be enthusiastic about the coin issue.

Star Wars rapidly developed a cult following after first appearing on cinema screens in May 1977, and spawned a huge merchandising industry.

Niue, a remote Polynesian state of only 1,400 people, normally uses New Zealand currency.

The island nation courted controversy in April with the commemorative stamp it issued to celebrate the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton.

The stamp featured a perforated line down the middle, which split the happy couple.

Queen to share Pacific nation’s coins with Star Wars characters – Telegraph


August 15, 2011 - Posted by | Blog, Blogroll, Funny, Internet, Money, People, Si-Fi, Space, Weird |

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