Description

The Swiss Federal Mint has released (23 January 2020) new gold collector coins, dedicated to eminent Physicist Albert Einstein, which they claim are the smallest machine-minted gold coins in the world. Measuring only 2.96 millimetres in diameter and with a weight of 0.063 grams, the .999 pure gold coins carry a legal tender denomination of 1/4-franc. Because neither image on the minted sides can be discerned with the naked eye, the Swissmint has commissioned special packaging, complete with magnifying lenses and light, ensuring that each coin can be examined while still keeping it safely stored.

Engraver: Remo Mascherini

Obverse

Depicts the nominal value of 1/4 Fr. along with the inscription Helvetia and the Swiss cross, supplemented by the alloy mark AU 999.9, and the weight (OZ 1/500).

The white cross has been used as the field sign (attached to the clothing of combattants and to the cantonal war flags in the form of strips of linen) of the Old Swiss Confederacy since its formation in the late 13th or early 14th century. Its symbolism was described by the Swiss Federal Council in 1889 as representing "at the same the Christian cross symbol and the field sign of the Old Confederacy". The federal coat of arms was defined in 1815 for the Restored Confederacy as the white-on-red Swiss cross in a heraldic shield. The white cross is known as the Swiss cross. Its arms are equilateral, and their ratio of length to width is 7:6.

The name Helvetica is a derivation of the ethnonym Helvetii, the name of the Gaulish tribe inhabiting the Swiss Plateau prior to the Roman conquest.

HELVETIA
1/4 Fr.
Au 999.9 B OZ 1/500

Reverse

Depicts the famous image of Albert Einstein sticking out his tongue and the year 2020. Engraver's privy mark (initials) below.

Albert Einstein (1879–1955) was a German-born theoretical physicist. He developed the general theory of relativity, one of the two pillars of modern physics (alongside quantum mechanics). Einstein's work is also known for its influence on the philosophy of science. Einstein is best known in popular culture for his mass–energy equivalence formula E = mc2 (which has been dubbed "the world's most famous equation"). He received the 1921 Nobel Prize in Physics for his "services to theoretical physics", in particular his discovery of the law of the photoelectric effect, a pivotal step in the evolution of quantum theory.

On Einstein's 72nd birthday on March 14, 1951, United Press photographer Arthur Sasse was trying to persuade him to smile for the camera, but having smiled for photographers many times that day, Einstein stuck out his tongue instead. This photograph became one of the most popular ever taken of Einstein, often used in merchandise depicting him in a lighthearted sense. Einstein enjoyed this photo and requested UPI to give him nine copies for personal use.

2020
RM

Edge -

1/4 Franc

Albert Einstein

KM#
Characteristics
Type Commemorative Issue (Non-circulating)
Material Gold
Fineness 0.999
Weight 0.063 g
Diameter 2.96 mm
Thickness -
Shape round
Alignment Medal
Mint
Swissmint

Related coins

Zinc, 1.2 g, ⌀ 16 mm

Bronze, 2.5 g, ⌀ 20 mm

Zinc, 2.5 g, ⌀ 20 mm