2021 Napoleon’s Angel 1oz Gold Proof Coin


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Napoleon Bonaparte was born on the island of Corsica in 1769. He is widely regarded as one of history’s great military minds, building an Empire that stretched across Europe before his defeat at Waterloo in 1815. He was exiled to St Helena, where he remained until his death in 1821.

While Napoleon’s military cunning is undisputable, it is also believed that he carried a symbol of good luck with him, his own personal guardian angel.

The French Angel Coin first appeared in the late 18th Century. Its designer became suspected of revolutionary tendencies and was sentenced to death but somehow escaped the guillotine. Allegedly he bribed his captors with an Angel Coin, and it became known as a lucky charm. 19th Century French Naval Captains would refuse to sail without one in their purse, and even Napoleon was not beyond belief in the lucky Angel Coin. According to folklore he carried one in his pocket throughout his reign, only to fatefully lose it the day before his final defeat at Waterloo.


After his death on St Helena, Napoleon was initially buried there at Longwood House. But in his will he had asked to be buried “by the banks of the Seine surrounded by the French people whom I love so dearly”. His wish was granted in 1840 and he now lies in a tomb at Les Invalides in Paris under the watchful gaze of 12 magnificent stone-carved angels.

To mark the 200th Anniversary of Napoleon’s death, we pay tribute to the symbolic angel with this new design partly inspired by the Napoleon Death Medal. It featured an angel draped over the Emperor’s tomb, while this 2021 coin design shows a peaceful angel holding a watchful gaze, and a protective hand, over Napoleon’s resting place.

This gold 1oz Proof coin, presented in a luxurious case accompanied by a booklet and certificate of authenticity, is the first in a new collection which will be released as an annual series with a new ‘Angel’ themed design each year.

Coin Name: 2021 Napoleon’s Angel 1oz Gold Proof Coin
Alloy: 0.999Au
Denomination: £5
Weight: 1oz
Issuing Authority: St Helena
Diameter: 32mm
Edge: Milled
Issue Limit: 250
Total Mintage: 250


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