The Royal Mint in collaboration with Agatha Christie Limited is celebrating ‘100 years of Mystery’ with a new commemorative £2 coin in recognition of Dame Agatha Christie’s vast body of work which shaped the modern mystery genre.
The commemorative £2 coin coincides with the centenary of Dame Agatha Christie’s first novel, The Mysterious Affair at Styles, which first introduced the iconic Belgian detective Hercule Poirot to the world when published in October 1920. The novel ushered in a golden age of mystery novels in the 1920s and 1930s, and her subsequent work shaped the mystery genre across books, TV and films for generations to come.
The coin’s designer, David Lawrence, encapsulates the essence of an Agatha Christie novel by featuring jigsaw pieces as the basis of the coin design – which are symbolic of the ingenious plot twists readers have come to expect from a Christie narrative. In addition to this, an exact replication of Agatha Christie’s signature is also included on the coin’s design as well as the edge inscription bearing the iconic phrase ‘LITTLE GREY CELLS’, first used by the character Hercule Poirot in The Mysterious Affair at Styles.
A Great Honour for a Great Author
Clare Maclennan, Divisional Director of Commemorative Coin at The Royal Mint said, “This year marks the 100th anniversary of Agatha Christies first published novel The Mysterious Affair at Styles. To commemorate the significant anniversary, we are delighted to introduce this commemorative £2 coin to celebrate 100 years of Mystery and honour the bestselling novelist of all time. The coin’s design is adorned with all the hallmarks of an Agatha Christie novel, with the jigsaw pieces representing ingenious plot twists that we are all familiar with when reading her mystery novels.”
James Prichard, Chairman and CEO of Agatha Christie Limited and Agatha Christie’s great grandson, said: “I’m delighted that The Royal Mint are honouring the work of my great grandmother in this way. She was, quite simply, a genius, and it is fantastic to see her stories and characters continuing to receive such recognition 100 years after her first novel was published.”
David Lawrence, designer of the Agatha Christie commemorative coin said: “The coin was about Agatha Christie’s incredible creativity – referencing just one element from such a vast body of work would not adequately sum up her contribution to the mystery genre. The jigsaw turned out to be the best metaphor for an Agatha Christie mystery: the story is gradually pieced together but it is not until the final missing piece is dropped into place that the whole picture can be seen.”
Published in over 50 languages and distributed in more than 100 countries, Agatha Christie’s timeless tales of mystery are beloved around the world. She is recognised globally as the bestselling novelist of all time, with sales that measure in the billions, Agatha Christie is outsold only by the formidable competition of William Shakespeare and the Bible. Whilst primarily famed for her crime novels, she also holds the title of the most successful female playwright of all time, with the world’s longest-running play – The Mousetrap.
The coin will be available in limited-edition Gold Proof, Silver Proof and Silver Proof Piedfort, as well as Brilliant Uncirculated edition.
For more information visit the website of The Royal Mint.
Currently, the Royal Mint’s gold Britannia coins are extremely successful, here you can find out about the new anti-counterfeit features of these issues!
All Hercule Poirot stories were dramatised for TV with David Suchet as the Belgian detective. Here you can listen to the famous opening sequence and see still photos of him.