Japan to Mint new Commemoratives
government is creating 94 types of commemorative
500 and 1,000 yen coins, including special coins
for each prefecture. The designs for Kyoto and
Shimane (pictured) were announced by Finance
Minister Fukushiro Nukaga.
The 1,000-yen coins for Kyoto and Shimane will
be sterling silver, weigh 31.1 grams and measure
40 millimeters in diameter. The government will
mint a total of 100,000 of each coin.
The Kyoto coin features a scene from the classic
work penned by Murasaki Shikibu (Lady Murasaki),
depicting romances among members of the court in
It will be issued before the millennial
anniversary Nov. 1 of the Tale of Genji, which
first appeared in recorded history in 1008.
The Shimane coin will be minted to celebrate the
addition last year of the centuries-old Iwami
silver mine to the World Heritage List of the
U.N. Educational Scientific and Cultural
The reverse side of the coins will have a
uniform design for all 47 prefectures, featuring
snow crystals, cherry blossoms and a crescent
These will be among 94 types of 500- and
1000-yen coins for each of Japan’s 47
prefectures that will be released over the next
eight years to commemorate the 60th anniversary
of the going into force of the Local Autonomy
Law, according to the Finance Ministry.
The government decided on the design of the two
coins after releasing the Hokkaido coin in time
for this year’s July 7-9 Group of Eight summit
to be held in the Lake Toya resort area there.
The ministry said Japan will issue coins for
Niigata and Nagano prefectures in the first half
of fiscal 2009 to commemorate Japanese crested
ibises on Sado Island and the Zenkoji Buddhist
temple in Nagano City. Both the ibises and the
temple are recognized as national treasures.
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