|Coin on display at Prague in 2007|
|Measurements and composition|
Elizabeth II, value, year
Maple leaves, gold purity, state title
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The 1,000,000 dollar coin, introduced in 2007, is a gold bullion coin of Canada's Maple Leaf series. Massive in both value and size, the piece is the highest denominated coin of the Canadian dollar and the second largest known coin in existence, behind Australia's 1,000,000 dollar coin introduced in 2011. The large Canadian coin was produced at the Royal Canadian Mint in Ottawa. While it carries a legal tender face value equivalent to one million Canadian dollars, the piece does not see any general circulation due to its high melt value and considerable size.
- See also: Canadian Maple Leaf
The coin is composed of .99999 fine gold and weighs 100 kilograms (220.5 pounds). The Royal Canadian Mint defines this .99999 purity as having "less than 10 parts per million" of 19 elements, in reference to the "bulk material under the coin's surface". Described in an article by news agency Reuters as "the size of an extra-large pizza", the piece measures 500 millimeters in diameter (1.64 feet) and 30 millimeters (1.18 inches) in thickness. It has medallic alignment and a plain edge, and like most coins, is round in shape. The rims of both the obverse and reverse are raised, and form the angles of a dodecagon.
Displayed in the middle of the obverse is a polished right-facing portrait of Elizabeth II (1926–), the current Queen of the United Kingdom and of Canada. Such a depiction, designed by Canadian artist Susanna Blunt (1941–) around 2003, shows an older Elizabeth with curly hair, wearing an earring and a necklace. Blunt's "SB" initials are carved into the bottom of the image. Arched counterclockwise along the bottom rim of the coin, below the portrait, is the caption "ELIZABETH II", and engraved at the top of the piece in the opposite direction is the Gregorian year of minting, "2007". The remainder of the outer periphery is occupied by two indications of the face value, both written in a clockwise direction. Printed at the left rim is the face value in English, "1 MILLION DOLLARS". Its equivalent in French, Canada's other official language, is inscribed as "1 MILLION DE DOLLARS" along the right boundary of the obverse. Featured in the middle of the reverse, designed by engraver Stan Witten, are three polished maple leaves. The maple leaf is the namesake of Canada's bullion coin program, as well as a national symbol of the country. Witten's initials, "SW", are engraved in small print to the lower right of the illustration. Printed in a clockwise direction along the upper rim of the reverse is the state title "CANADA". "100 KG", abbreviated for "100 kilograms" in English, or 100 kilogrammes in French, is printed at the bottom of the piece. The English "FINE GOLD" is engraved counterclockwise to the right of this text, and the French equivalent, "OR PUR", is written to the right. Combined, the legends indicate the piece to be made of 100 kilograms of fine gold. "99999", identifying a purity of 99.999 percent gold, is inscribed horizontally in a small font at the left and right sides of the reverse, above the "F" in "FINE" and the "R" in "OR".
The one million dollar coin was composed of .99999 gold, weighed 100 kilograms, had a diameter of 500 millimeters, and a thickness of 30 millimeters. Displayed on the obverse, which was designed by Susanna Blunt, was a portrait of Queen Elizabeth II with the face value and year of minting of the coin. Shown on the reverse, which was designed by Stanley Witten, were maple leaves with "CANADA" inscribed above, and the coin's gold content inscribed below.
The Royal Canadian Mint had planned to make one example of the coin to promote its new series of 99.999 percent gold Canadian Maple Leaf bullion coins. However, as interested investors offered to purchase the coin, the mint decided to produce 5 examples.
The coin was not struck like most pieces. It was cast and then machined to the proper size and shape. The piece dwarfs the Austrian 100,000 euro coin, which was the world's largest coin from 2004 until the Canadian piece was introduced in 2007. The Austrian piece weighs 31.103 kilograms, and has a diameter of 370 millimeters and a thickness of 20 millimeters.
Because only five coins were produced, they are extremely rare and valuable. The current owners of these coins are Queen Elizabeth II; a Boris Fuchsmann; Oro Direct, a Spanish gold trading company; and two anonymous individuals in Dubai. The Bode Museum in Berlin has housed one example in its Münzkabinett since 2010, which is on loan from Fuchsmann.
On June 25, 2010, one of the five coins sold for about US$4.02 million at a Dorotheum auction in Vienna. This coin is now in possession of the Spanish gold trading company Oro Direct. It had been owned by the Austrian investment firm AvW Invest, but after the company's bankruptcy in 2010, the coin was included among its liquidated assets and resold.
- Numista: 1000000 Dollars — Elizabeth II — Canada 2007
- Royal Canadian Mint – The Million Dollar Coin – a true milestone in minting
- Reuters – Spare any change? Canada unveils C$1 million coin
- Bode Museum – 1 million-dollar gold coin of Queen Elizabeth II on view in the Bode-Museum
- VirtualTourist – Museum Island - Bode Museum, Berlin
- Coin Link – 220 Pound Gold Coin “Disappoints” And Only Sells For $4.02 Million
- Coins of the Canadian dollar on the English Wikipedia