I think the answer to my own question is no. There can never be too many coins.
However, at the World Money Fair in Berlin, it helps to focus on one or two items to truly appreciate the originality of mints.
My colleague Tom Michael and I had a meeting with Christophe Beaux, the director of the Paris Mint.
It was very productive.
The purpose was to give us a run through of the 2017 coin program.
There was gold. There was silver. There was use of color. All was very beautiful.
But I was most fascinated by a base metal coin.
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the death of the great French artist, Rodin.
His sculpture, “The Thinker,” is an iconic image recognized all over the world.
A portion of it appears on a new bimetallic 2-euro denomination.
The sculpture’s chin resting on its fist appears opposite a portrait of the artist.
At first, I thought the coin didn’t have a date on it. But after a careful look I saw it in Rodin’s beard as part of the legend, “A. Rodin 1917-2017.”
Crowds were at the mint’s booth to acquire an example of the new coin.
Two-euro coins are widely collected. It is a relatively new form of circulation finds since euro coins were first introduced in 2002.
Germany routinely issues a 2-euro during or in close proximity to the coin show as do other members of the euro zone.
Perhaps it seems strange to Lincoln cent collectors that a coin with a face value of 2 euros ($2.16) can be a circulation find. But it is. The denomination circulates. It can be acquired at face value. Price guides are compiled just for the denomination because of its commemorative and collectible natures.
A wide following for the denomination guarantees lines of people at booths on the bourse floor.
But I have to admit, that the coin caused a flashback to my youth. This was not because of circulation finds but because of an old TV character.
If you remember Dobie Gillis and his moments of deep thought with the Rodin statue, you will know what I was thinking about looking at the new coin.
But that is the beauty of numismatics. We all have unique ways of becoming attached to our coins.
In my case with this coin it was not because of high culture that I was drawn to the design, but because of how it intersected with popular TV when I was a kid.
The Paris Mint wouldn’t know this, but perhaps there will be more Americans drawn to this 2-euro coin for the very same reason I was.