Scarce--only 5,000 authorized. One of the world's smallest gold coins! Jonah the Prophet was commanded by the Lord to go from the Land of Israel to the city of Nineveh (thought to be Mosul in Iraq, today) to warn its people to repent for their evil ways, lest their city be destroyed. Jonah, however, chose to flee from his mission by boarding a ship bound for Tarshish (thought to be Spain, today). When a violent storm arose, the ship's crew believed that one of the passengers was responsible and cast lots to determine who it could be.
The lot fell on Jonah, who admitted his guilt and was cast into the sea, which then calmed down.
Meanwhile, a big fish, thought to be a whale, swallowed up Jonah into its belly, where he remained for three days and three nights. From the belly of the fish, Jonah prayed to the Lord and was saved when the fish spat him out on the shore.
He then understood he was destined to go to Nineveh, as he had been commanded. The King and the people of Nineveh repented and were subsequently saved.
The coin design of Jonah in the whale is inspired by the Chinese "Yin Yang" philosophy.
Obverse: The face value in Hebrew and English, the Israel State Emblem, "Israel" in Hebrew, English and Arabic, the mint year, inscription "Jonah in the belly of the fish", Jonah 2:1, in the 3 languages, Jonah in prayer.
Reverse: The coin depicts Jonah praying from the belly of the whale, "thy billows and thy waves passed over me.....yet I will look again towards thy Holy Temple....".