Australia has issued a new 50 cent coin celebrating some of the country’s indigenous languages, many of which are at risk of extinction.
The new design incorporates 14 translations of the word “coin” from languages native to the Australian continent, developed in collaboration by the Royal Australian Mint and the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS).
The coin was launched in Adelaide, South Australia, on April 8, and features the indigenous language of the traditional people of the area, the Kaurna. It was launched as part of countrywide efforts to mark the United Nations International Year of Indigenous Languages.
“Indigenous languages carry more meaning than the words themselves, so too does currency carry meaning beyond its monetary value. The release of these coins is another milestone in recognising the diverse cultures that shape our national story of over 60,000 years,” Craig Ritchie, CEO of AIATSIS, said in a statement.