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Three Graces Pattern Crown

By Kent Tran, Cataloger

Author: Kent Tran / Thursday, May 23, 2019 / Categories: World Coin of the Week

The design of the "Three Graces" Pattern Crown was inspired by ancient Greek mythology. Zeus, the king of the Greek gods, married Hera, the queen of the gods, and together they had three daughters. Their three daughters were Aglaia (Brightness), Euphrosyne (Joyfulness), and Thalia (Bloom). They symbolized charm, beauty, nature, creativity, and fertility and as a result, became known as the "Graces."

Borrowing from this powerful mythology, William Wyon engraved his rendition of the "Three Graces" to symbolize the enduring relationship that England, Ireland, and Scotland shared with one another as the United Kingdom. The depiction of the "Three Graces" appears on the coin's reverse, with each "Grace" embracing one another. At their feet, there is a harp, shield, and thistle, symbolizing the cultural symbols of each country; the harp symbolizes Ireland, the shield symbolizes England and the thistle symbolizes Scotland. Much like Aglaia, Euphrosyne and Thalia shared a close relationship, these countries also have a strong relationship with one another.

English Silver Coins (ESC) reports that there were only 50 pieces of this pattern Crown minted. Due to the combination of its great rarity and beautiful Classics-inspired design, this issue is widely considered one of the most desired coins in today's numismatic market. Further, the example Stack's Bowers Galleries will present in the August 2019 ANA World's Fair of Money auction features exceptional quality and preservation. The designs are crisply struck up on both sides, resulting in a near-sculptural relief. The fields are similarly impressive, with excellent reflectivity. Both sides are bathed in rich multicolored tone that comes to life when viewed beneath a light. With the pre-sale estimate set to exceed six figures, this coin will undoubtedly be one of the top highlights to cross the block in this year's ANA auction!