A brand-spankin’ new 50 cent coin has just been dropped into circulation featuring 14 indigenous words.
The Royal Australian Mint released this week to celebrate the International Year of indigenous Languages.
The coins are a celebration of Australia’s “unique and diverse” Indigenous languages said Mint CEO Ross MacDiarmid.
“We hope the coins will serve as a tangible reminder of the important efforts being undertaken to preserve, protect and revitalise Indigenous languages in Australia,” he said.
Released today, Australia’s Newest Circulating celebrates the International Year of Indigenous Languages. Featuring 14 language groups, this special 50 cent piece recognises Australia’s Indigenous languages and their importance to our national heritage @AIATSIS @iyoil #IYIL2019 pic.twitter.com/AwmReJROX2
— RoyalAustralianMint (@RoyalAustMint) April 9, 2019
The various indigenous words which feature on the new-issue coin are 14 different translations for the word ‘money’.
There are over 250 Indigenous languages in Australia, and the ones used on the coin represent tiny number of these.
Before colonisation, there was no money system – things like pearl shells, quartz or food were traded. The words, therefore, are relatively new to indigenous languages.
A new 50 cent coin marks the International Year of Indigenous Languages – if features 14 different words for “money” from Australian Indigenous languages.
— The Conversation (@ConversationEDU) April 8, 2019