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The Austrian Mint has released the 2022 version of the silver philharmonic coin. Since its initial release in 2008, the silver philharmonic has become a top choice for coin collectors and bullion investors in Europe and around the world. It’s one of the relatively rare silver coins issued with a face value in euros.
Let’s take a closer look at the silver philharmonic coin…
Most government mints choose political leaders (George Washington, Queen Elizabeth II, Jakob Kruger), national symbolic animals (the eagle, the kangaroo, the springbok) or people (Lady Liberty, Britannia) for their precious metal coinage. The Austrian Mint went with a completely apolitical representation of national pride and achievement: the Musikverein, Vienna’s world-renowned concert hall where the Weiner Philharmoniker, or Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, regularly perform. Why this choice? According to the orchestra’s website:
The Vienna Philharmonic is not only Austria's most highly coveted “cultural export”, it is also an ambassador of peace, humanity and reconciliation, concepts which are inseparably linked to the message of music itself.
The people of Austria take incredible pride in their performers. This pride is on full display in the design of the 2022 silver philharmonic coin (unchanged from previous years).
The obverse features what might, at first, look like a building. It’s actually an integral part of the Großer Musikvereinssaal (Golden Hall): a neoclassical display case, built in 1870, for truly massive pipe organs. Today the ornately gilded display case is home to a Rieger-Orgelbau organ (only the fourth installed in the concert hall’s 150-year history).
You’ll see the words Republik Osterreich and 1 unze feinsilber on the obverse as well. These translate to "Republic of Austria" and "1 ounce fine silver" from German, Austria’s official language. The year of issue and face value of €1.50 (euro) also appear.
The reverse of the silver philharmonic coin displays a representative sampling of the instruments that compose an orchestra: a single cello, flanked right and left by two violins. Behind the string section, we see (left to right) a French horn, the top of a bassoon and a harp. These represent respectively the brass, woodwind and percussion sections of the orchestra. (Yes, it turns out harps are considered percussion or possibly hybrid percussion/string instruments – the things we learn!) All instruments are rendered in impressive detail though we do wonder where the cello and violins’ bows have got to.
Across the top edge of the coin, the phrase Weiner Philharmoniker (Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra) appears in classic Gothic lettering. Underneath, the word Silber appears to help distinguish the silver philharmonic coin from its platinum cousin.
Well, other than its beauty, you’ll discover the Vienna Philharmonic silver coin is currently the only European bullion coin with a face value in euros. (Even so, it’s only considered legal tender in Austria.) For that reason it’s been a hit with European collectors and physical silver collectors.
Beyond that? We think the Austrian philharmonic coins are a striking departure from the designs of most bullion coins. Instead of choosing to celebrate their (admittedly problematic)
former leaders or historical achievements, the Austrian Mint selected a completely non-political symbol of the nation’s cultural greatness.
That’s a very interesting choice. And it offers silver bullion investors the chance to get their hands on government-issued silver bullion coins without making a political statement.
Buyers note: We tend to see a very high turnover in silver philharmonic coins, and we expect this year will be no different. The best way to make absolutely sure you have one or more of these beauties in your collection is to buy now!
Highlights of the 2022 Austrian silver philharmonic coin:
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