Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 25 October 2014

£5 coin marks Titanic centenary

The Royal Mint's five pound coin rests against the cap of a surviving crew-member from the Titanic
A shipyard worker's ticket to the launch of the RMS Titanic. Photograph © National Museums Northern Ireland. Collection Ulster Folk & Transport Museum
The Titanic Building will immortalise one of history's most enduring tales

The Royal Mint has released a £5 coin to mark the 100th anniversary of the Titanic's doomed maiden voyage in 1912.

Royal Mint engraver Lee Robert Jones's design depicts Thane, the female figure depicted in the Titanic Memorial in Belfast, looking down at the world-famous profile of the ship sailing through the Atlantic Ocean.

The Titanic Memorial by Sir Thomas Brock depicts the goddess of death, who is variously called Thane or Fortuna, receiving the body of a seaman from two mermaids.

The Titanic, the largest passenger steamship in the world at the time, started its maiden voyage on April 10 1912, when she set sail from Southampton to New York with 2,223 people on board.

On April 14, the ship struck an iceberg and it sank less than three hours later with the loss of around 1,500 lives.

Mr Jones said: "My design is concerned with the spectacle for the ship and her story.

"Thane, the goddess of death, is to reflect the significance of the event - she symbolises respect and sorrow for the loss that occurred."

Dr Kevin Clancy, director of the Royal Mint Museum, added: "The passing of 100 years has not lessened the interest in the tragic outcome of her maiden voyage, the personal stories of those on board or the achievement of the iconic ship as a feat of British engineering.

"The Royal Mint's coin will mark this occasion and, we hope, will be passed on to future generations to honour the lives that were lost, underlining the significance of RMS Titanic in British history."

The commemorative coin, issued under the authority of the Channel Island of Alderney, is legal tender but will not be issued into circulation. It can be ordered from www.royalmint.com for £12.99 for a Brilliant Uncirculated coin and for £82.50 for Silver Proof.

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