2 euro Belgium 2011, 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day

2 Euro Commemorative Coins Belgium 2011 International Women’s Day

Belgian commemorative 2 euro coins 2011 - 1st Centenary of the International Women's Day

Commemorative 2 euro coins from Belgium

Description: The coin displays the effigies of Isala Van Diest, the first female Belgian doctor, and Marie Popelin, the first female Belgian lawyer. Their names (I. VAN DIEST and M. POPELIN) are written under the effigies, separated by the year mark, and above the inscriptions are the symbols of their respective professions (the Rod of Asclepius and the Scales of Justice). Above the effigies are the inscription BE, the mint master mark and the mint mark. The twelve stars of the European Union surround the design on the outer ring of the coin.

Reverse: left from the coin centre face value: 2, on the right inscription: EURO; in the background of the inscription a map of Europe; in the background of the map vertically six parallel lines ending on both sides with five-pointed stars (the reverse is common for all euro coins)

Issuing volume: 5 million coins
Date of issue:   March 2011
Face value:       2 euro
Diameter:         25.75 mm
Thickness:        2.2 mm
Weight:             8.5 gr
Composition: BiAlloy (Nk/Ng), ring Cupronickel (75% copper - 25% nickel clad on nickel core), center Nickel brass
€2 Edge Inscription: The Belgian €2 coin edge inscription is '2', followed by two stars, repeated six times alternately upright and inverted.
Mint Location: Monnaie Royale de Belgique/Koninklijke Munt van België (Royal Mint of Belgium), in Brussels, Belgium.
Mint Marks: Mintmark of the Royal Mint of Belgium: the head of Archangel Michael with a cross on top. Located at the bottom left of the main design theme, inner circle.
Mint Master Marks: Belgian Royal Mint director, Serge Lesens: quill. Located to the left of the date stamp, inner circle.
National Identification: Abbreviation: 'BE'; Belgium.

International Women's Day
International Women's Day (IWD), also called International Working Women's Day, is celebrated on March 8 every year. In different regions the focus of the celebrations ranges from general celebration of respect, appreciation and love towards women to a celebration for women's economic, political, and social achievements. Started as a Socialist political event, the holiday blended in the culture of many countries, primarily in Europe, including Russia. In some regions, the day lost its political flavor, and became simply an occasion for men to express their love for women in a way somewhat similar to a mixture of Mother's Day and Valentine's Day. In other regions, however, the political and human rights theme designated by the United Nations runs strong, and political and social awareness of the struggles of women worldwide are brought out and examined in a hopeful manner. This is a day which some people celebrate by wearing purple ribbons.

2011 International Women's Day

Events took place in more than 100 countries on March 8, 2011 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of International Women's Day. In the United States, President Barack Obama proclaimed March 2011 to be "Women's History Month", calling Americans to mark IWD by reflecting on "the extraordinary accomplishments of women" in shaping the country's history. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton launched the "100 Women Initiative: Empowering Women and Girls through International Exchanges", on the eve of IWD. In the run-up to 2011 International Women's Day, the ICRC called on States and other entities not to relent in their efforts to prevent rape and other forms of sexual violence that harm the lives and dignity of countless women in conflict zones around the world every year. In Pakistan, Punjab Govt. Project Gender Reform Action Plan, District Gujranwala celebrated this day in large scale in the Gift University Gujranwala. Mrs. Shazia Ashfaq Mattu, MPA and GRAP officer Mr. Dr. Yasir Nawaz Manj organized the events in very effective manners.

Australia issued a 100th anniversary commemorative coin.

In Egypt however, the day was a step back for women. In Egypt’s Tahrir Square, hundreds of men came out not in support for women but to harass the women who came out to stand up for their rights as the police and military stood by watching the events unfold in front of them. "The women - some in headscarves and flowing robes, others in jeans - had marched to Cairo's central Tahrir Square to celebrate International Women's Day. But crowds of men soon outnumbered them and chased them out," wrote Hadeel Al-Shalchi for AP.

Isala Van Diest
Anne Catherine Albertine Isala Van Diest, better known by the name 'Isala Van Diest, born on May 7, 1842 at Louvain and died February 6, 1916 in Knokke was the first female medical doctor and the first female university graduate in Belgium.
Isala Van Diest and Marie Popelin were together depicted on the 2 euro commemorative coin, 5 million of which were minted in 2011 by the National Bank of Belgium on the occasion of the centenary of International Women's Day.
In Belgium, this was the first time that women who were not part of the royal family appeared on piece of Belgian money.

Marie Popelin
Marie Popelin (Schaerbeek, Belgium 17 September 1846–Ixelles, Belgium 5 June 1913) was a Belgian feminist lawyer and political campaigner. Popelin worked with Isabelle Gatti de Gamond in the development of women's education in Belgium and, in 1888, became the first woman to receive a law doctorate in the country.
Popelin has been commemorated in numerous ways within Belgium. She featured on a Belgian postage stamp during the International Women's Year of 1975, and a road in Saint-Josse-ten-Noode was named after her in 2008. In 2011 Popelin, together with the first Belgian female doctor, Isala Van Diest, were depicted on the Belgian two euro commemorative coin for the 1st centenary of the International Woman's Day.

Rod of Asclepius
In Greek mythology, the Rod of Asclepius ( sometimes also spelled Asklepios or Aesculapius), also known as the asklepian, is a serpent-entwined rod wielded by the Greek god Asclepius, a deity associated with healing and medicine. The symbol has continued to be used in modern times, where it is associated with medicine and health care, yet frequently confused with the staff of the god Hermes, the caduceus. Theories have been proposed about the Greek origin of the symbol and its implications.

Lady Justice
Lady Justice (Latin: Iustitia, the Roman goddess of Justice, who is equivalent to the Greek goddesses Themis and Dike) is an allegorical personification of the moral force in judicial systems.