First issued in 1978 by the Royal Canadian Mint, the Canadian Maple Leaf is one of the most internationally well-known and most widely traded gold coins today. The motif that gives it its name - the maple leaf - is the national symbol of Canada. Since as far back as the 18th century, the maple leaf has symbolised the vast forests of the Canadian wilderness. The clear rivers, in which the first Canadian gold nuggets were found, also wind through these woods. Since the gold finds of the first settlers, Canada has become one of the largest gold exporters in the world. No wonder one of the most prestigious gold investment coins on the market also comes from this country.
The Maple Leaf owes this outstanding position to the fact that it was the only modern, freely available investment coin when it was introduced. Although the Krugerrand was already established at this point in time, it was subject to strict export restrictions because of apartheid.
Initially, the coins had a purity of 999/1000 (triple nine) and then of 999.9/1000 (four nine) from 1982, which is an unusually high purity for an investment coin. Nine years after the first gold Maple Leaf was minted, versions in silver and platinum became available from 1988 as well as a palladium version from 2005. Today the coin is available in silver at a weight of 1 oz and in gold and platinum in 1 oz, 1/2 oz, 1/4 oz, 1/10 oz weights. There are even gold maples in the denomination of 1/20 oz.
The design of the coin has remained virtually unchanged since its introduction. The obverse (front or image side) shows the leaf of the maple tree and the fineness, material and weight of the coin. The reverse (i.e. the back or value side) shows the portrait of Canada's current Head of State along with their name (currently Queen Elizabeth II),the nominal value of the coin and the year of issue. The portrait is updated at intervals of about ten to twelve years. Thus, the fifth portrait of Elizabeth II was introduced in 2015 in honour of her long reign, which no British monarch before her had achieved.
In 2013, further security features were added to the coin. A fine pattern of radial lines was added as the background to the motifs on both the front and back. On the front there is also a maple leaf measuring only a few millimetres framing the last two digits of the year of issue, which is particularly complicated to copy because of its size.
If you are interested in purchasing the Maple Leaf, take a look at our range of silver, gold and platinum Maple Leaf coins. If you have any questions, you can call us at +44 20 36950335 or send us an e-mail. We look forward to your order!