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Celebrate the Olympics with new Euro coins!

It's the year of sports! This July the thirty-third edition of the Olympic Games will take place in Paris. To commemorate the return of the event after one hundred years, France has released four new Euro coins. Learn all about these special commemorative coins and their meaning.

What are commemorative coins?

Commemorative coins celebrate and honour special events, anniversaries, places, and people. These special edition coins are usually released in small batches and sold to coin collectors and enthusiast. However, some commemorative coins are classified as legal tender and can be used as payment.

Whenever a country wants to release a commemorative coin that is considered legal tender, they must comply with the rules set by the European Central Bank. These rules state that countries are allowed to issue a maximum of two commemorative coins per year, and that their special designs can only be featured on the national side of the €2 coin. This ensures that the general side of the coin, which shows its value, is always the same and recognisable.

Introducing the Olympic coins

Since the introduction of the Euro, many special editions have been released. The very first commemorative €2 coin was introduced by Greece to celebrate the 2004 Olympic Games. Now, exactly twenty years later, the Olympic Games are hosted by France, which has released its own set of commemorative coins.

In September 2021, France introduced the first Olympic €2 coin. The national side of the coin represents Marianne running in an old style that represents the Olympic Games of the Ancient Era. Her silhouette blends together with the Eiffel Tower. Combining two important staples for both the country and its capital. In total 510.000 units of the commemorative coin have been issued and made available to purchase.

One year later in 2022, France released the second Olympic coin. This coin features the Genius in a discus throwing position to represent the Olympic Games in the Antique Era. The Genius is often referred to as the guardian angel of France, that offers his protection to its citizens. His silhouette blends together with the Arc De Triomphe. The emblematic monument of victory. Creating one visual representation of the nation's power. In total 260.000 units of the coin were released.

In January 2023, the third Olympic coin was released. This coin depicts the Sower practicing pugilism, which was the frontrunner of the sport we now know as boxing. Representing the Olympic Games in the Antic Era, she stands in front of the Pont-Neuf, the oldest bridge in Paris. The image displays how sport can create a bridge between different people and bring them together. In total 260.000 commemorative coins, featuring the Sower, have been created.

Finally, this year the last Olympic coin has been released, which features Hercules wrestling in front of the Notre Dame. Widely recognised as the symbol of both the city of Paris and the French nation, the cathedral creates the perfect backdrop to the display of strength and power. In total 510.000 units of the final coin have been released.

Counting the Olympic coins

As commemorative coins are not often released into official circulation, it is unlikely that you will encounter many in your business. However, if you do receive one of the Olympic coins, you are obligated to accept it as they are considered legal tender. Luckily, the size and weight of commemorative €2 coins must always be equal to the regular versions. This means that they can easily be recognised and processed by our coin counter and money counting scales. Taking any worry or effort away from you and your team.

The following sources have been consulted and used as references in this article:

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