Coins

The coins of the euro have a common side, and a national side. The latter is designed by the respective national ESCB printer. In addition, three European microstates with currency agreements (Monaco, San Marino and the Vatican City State) issue their own coins.

One euro is divided into 100 cents (often written as decimals of one euro, e.g. 0.10) and there are eight different denominations of euro coins.



0.01
Diameter: 16,25 mm
Thickness: 1,67 mm
Mass: 2,30 g
Form: round
Color: cooper
Composition: cooper plated steel
Edge: plain


0.02
Diameter: 18,75 mm
Thickness: 1,67 mm
Mass: 3,06 g
Form: round
Color: cooper
Composition: cooper plated steel
Edge: plain, have a groove around the edge


0.05
Diameter: 21,25 mm
Thickness: 1,67 mm
Mass: 3,92 g
Form: round
Color: cooper
Composition: cooper plated steel
Edge: plain


0.10
Diameter: 19,75 mm
Thickness: 1,93 mm
Mass: 4,10 g
Form: round
Color: yellow
Composition: nordic gold (Cu 89%; Al 5%; Zn 5%; Sn 1%)
Edge: have fine scallops at the edge


0.20
Diameter: 22,25 mm
Thickness: 2,14 mm
Mass: 5,74 g
Form: spanish flower
Color: yellow
Composition: nordic gold (Cu 89%; Al 5%; Zn 5%; Sn 1%)
Edge: plain


0.50
Diameter: 24,25 mm
Thickness: 2,38 mm
Mass: 7,80 g
Form: round
Color: yellow
Composition: nordic gold (Cu 89%; Al 5%; Zn 5%; Sn 1%)
Edge: have fine scallops at the edge


1
Diameter: 23,25 mm
Thickness: 2,33 mm
Mass: 7,50 g
Form: round
Color: ring: yellow, center: white
Composition: ring: nickel brass, center: cupronickel
Edge: interrupted mills (three sections milled, three sections plain) at the edge


2
Diameter: 25,75 mm
Thickness: 2,20 mm
Mass: 8,50 g
Form: round
Color: ring: white, center: yellow
Composition: ring: cupronickel, center: nickel brass
Edge: embossed letters (different for each country), embedded in mills, all around the edge
The obverse side varies from state to state, with each member allowed to choose their own design. Each of the eight coins can have the same design (such as Belgian coins), or can vary from each coin (such as Italian coins). In Monarchies, the national side usually features a portrait of the country's monarch, often in a design carried over from the former currency (such as Belgian coins). Republics tend to feature national monuments, symbols or stylised designs (such as French coins). Engravings on the edge of the two euro coin is also subject to national choice.

There are however some restrictions on the design, it must include twelve stars, the engravers initials and the year of issue. New issues must also include the name of the issuing country. It can't repeat the denomination of the coin or the word euro unless it is in a different alphabet (such as on Greek coins). The national side is also restricted from changing until the end of 2008, unless a monarch depicted on a coin dies or abdicates (such as in the case of the Vatican's coins). Following 2004, states could also produce one 2 commemorative coin a year in limited numbers.

There are at present no plans to abolish the national designs in favour of a European one. However the Commission has proposed that the one, two and five cent coins have a common design to keep down costs. Also, in 2007, all eurozone countries issued a near-identical commemorative coin to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the signature of the Treaties of Rome. These coins had the same design except for the name of the country and the language of the text used.

Though they are not members of the EU, Monaco, San Marino and Vatican City also have euro coins featuring a national side, but these only occasionally end up in general circulation as their scarcity leads to greater interest from coin collectors. Andorra is currently in talks to mint its own coin design.


Source: Wikipedia