€2 commemorative coins - Spain 2005, 400th anniversary of the first edition of Miguel de Cervantes’ Don Quixote de La Mancha.
Subject of commemoration: 4th centenary of the first edition of Miguel de Cervantes’ 'The ingenious gentleman Don Quixote of La Mancha'
Description of the design: The centre of the coin features an image of Don Quixote holding a lance, with windmills in the background. To the left, impressed into the surface of the coin, is the word 'ESPAÑA', under which the mintmark 'M' appears. The 12 stars of the European Union are shown in the outer ring of the coin, with four of them impressed into the surface. The year of issue is indicated at the bottom.
Issuing volume: 8 million coins
Issuing date: April 2005
Face value: 2 euro
Diameter: 25.75 mm
Weight: 8.50 g
Alloy: Bimetal: CuNi, nordic gold
Quality: Proof, BU, UNC
Published in two volumes, in 1605 and 1615, Don Quixote is considered the most influential work of literature from the Spanish Golden Age and the entire Spanish literary canon. As a founding work of modern Western literature, and one of the earliest canonical novels, it regularly appears high on lists of the greatest works of fiction ever published. It has had major influence on the literary community, as evidenced by direct references in Alexandre Dumas' The Three Musketeers (1844) and Mark Twain's Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1884).
His magnum opus, Don Quixote, considered to be the first modern European novel, is a classic of Western literature, and is regarded amongst the best works of fiction ever written. His influence on the Spanish language has been so great that the language is often called la lengua de Cervantes ("the language of Cervantes"). He was dubbed El Príncipe de los Ingenios ("The Prince of Wits").