I love this coin! Esthetically it’s one of my favorite ones, and this all has to do with the seal – doing what seals do – relaxing on some rocks. This is a one of few freshwater seals and it’s called a Saimaa ringed seal which, unfortunately, is an endangered species. I especially like its whiskers. On the other side you have some lily pads and also a dragonfly.
As I mentioned in an earlier post Finland is very closely connected to Sweden. Close to 300 000 people in Finland speaks Swedish as a native language and Swedish language is a mandatory subject in Finnish schools. In recent years an opposition to the Swedish language has gained power, but as we see on this coin from 1996 the bilingualism of Finland is of importance. The Finnish markka was replaced by the euro in 2002.