In 2012 and 2013 the Royal Australian Mint released two silver five dollar coins that focused on a different constellation
in the Southern Sky. This piece features the Crux constellation which is perhaps better known by its colloquial name, the
Southern Cross. The reverse was designed by A. Baggio and features a
coloured sky against the constellation with a
stating "SOUTHERN SKY - RA 12h 30m 00s - CRUX - DEC - 60 00' 00." The obverse
houses the standard Ian Rank-Broadley Portrait of HM Queen Elizabeth II with the
"ELIZABETH II AUSTRALIA 2012" and the denomination "5 DOLLARS".
The Southern Cross is known as Crux to astronomers. It is located near to the South Celestial Pole which means that it
is almost always visible from anywhere in Australia.
(Fred Watson, 2017)
Crux was visible in Ancient Greece and formed part of the Greek constellation Centaurus. The constellation has not been
visible in Greece for over a thousand years as the earths axis has slowly shifted. Indigenous Australians have developed
a number of stories that surround the constellation. For the Noongar people of Western Australia the crux is seen as five
children who have fled when a spear was thrown at them. To the people of the the central desert the Southern Cross is the
footprint of a wedge-tailed eagle.
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