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October 2010 - Happy Samhain

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Dimensions2 inches tall


FinishBlack Nickel

EnamelingSoft Enamel


Has IconYes

This is the regular edition coin of the October Geocoin Club Coin.

Flavor text provided by the artist, Chris Mackey:

When I started researching Halloween, aka All Hallows Eve, I was amazed how far off the basic ideas of what it was really all about compared to our modern day beliefs mixed up with a healthy dose of imagination and superstition wink.gif Samhain (Scots Gaelic: Samhuinn) means quite litterally Summer's End and is the root of modern day Halloween. The Celtic nations believed that the fall (when everything is dying - vegetation at least) is the end of the year. It was the end of the growing season and the time when all of nature is trying it's hardest to prepare for the rebirth in the new year. Animals are mating, rock-hard nuts and seeds are softening in the earth, and the majority of the hard work that makes up life is lightening as people settled in for the winter.

The front side of the coin shows the nuts of the forest and the grains of the field over the blazing chaff from the farms. The dogs of hunt are chasing the beasts of the field (four corners) and the symbols of the moon in it's constant death and rebirth cycle enclose the blessing for a Happy Summer's End. On the reverse side, we see the Bella Donna (Nightshade) which will ripen into red berries for medicine in the winter along with the moon as a reminder of the constant transition of life & death.

The Celts believed this very special time of year while half the living things in the world were dying and the other half were being conceived was a special time and the closest time of the year where life and death touched. Carvings on doorways and in gourds were considered necessary for warning away evil spirits much like more modern gargoyles on the towers of churches. I hoped a skeleton (a universal symbol for death) in a lively state and looking through the eyes of one of these carvings in a jesting theatrical pose would be a graceful way of crossing all of these ideas at once. I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed designing it! smile.gif
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