Vatican City 100-LIRE (KM216)
Vatican City 100-LIRE (KM216)

Vatican City 100-LIRE (KM216) Pelican

This coin was issued under the reign of Pope John Paul II and features a pelican wounding her own breast to feed her young (because there is no other food available). Alternatively, she killed her own young, then resurrected them with her own blood (which, somewhat fittingly, makes no sense).

In this Christian myth, the pelican symbolizes the Passion of Jesus and the Eucharist. It dates to medieval Europe and you can read more about it here. This same motif appeared on an earlier 5 lire coin (KM118) under the previous pope. It also appears on a 2 lire coin from San Marino (KM23).

Thanks to Maria for gifting this coin!

Specifications

  • Diameter: 27.8 mm
  • Composition: Stainless Steel
  • CAT#: KM216

Obverse Legend

IOANNES PAVLVS II P. M. AN.XI. MCMLXXXIX

Reverse Legend

CITTA' DEL VATICANO L.100

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