A Good Luck Coin with Egyptian Symbols
The Pharaoh, Sphinx, Pyramids, and Heiroglyphs
Egyptian Magic Coins are coins with Egyptian symbols which have been made since 1905.
They were originally part of watch fobs but were then manufactured as independent items.
at coin shows, and even in motion pictures.
including Britain, Canada, Australia, South Africa, Germany, France, Poland, Portugal,
the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Uruguay, and, yes, Egypt.
1. Egyptian Magic Coin
Gold colored bronze, 32mm, 8.35gm
Obverse: Pharaoh seated on throne surrounded by heiroglyphs
Reverse: Sphinx with pyramids and sunburst behind
The standard Egyptian Magic Coin has an Egyptian Pharaoh, a Sphinx, and Pyramids.
The obverse side displays the Pharaoh and the reverse side displays the Sphinx and Pyramids.
Hieroglyphic symbols including a pair of fish, a man seated, and a jar.
Below the Sphinx are Hieroglyphic symbols including a bird, three dots, and an Ankh.
The pyramids become larger from left to right.
Searches for trademark or patent registrations have turned up nothing.
There are three main types of these items and several varieties.
There are some varieties which incorporate a standard obverse or reverse with the other side
having a completely different design.
with text and logos on them.
Some are plain round coins, some have loops for wearing them as jewelry or amulets.
Sometimes loops have been removed to create a "coin".
Many are found very worn and possibly they were kept as pocket pieces.
which saw ancient Egyptian designs being worked into architecture and art.
a small linen or papyrus disc placed on the head of a mummy body before interment.
These items are round and have Egyptian hieroglyphics and symbols on them.
in the 1905 Sears & Roebuck mail-order catalog as part of a watch fob.
Discovery of Tutankhamun:
created another wave of "Egyptian Revival" items, including more of these coins.
Some were handed out by stage magicians, hence the description "Magic Coins".
Some were sold at the Chicago Century of Progress World's Fair of 1933-1934, and at other large events.
Some tourists in Egypt have reported seeing these items for sale in the bazaars.
identify an "Ancient Egyptian Coin", "Aztec Coin" "Mayan Coin", or something similar.
Hollywood Film Star:
Walter Huston gives one to Jennifer Jones to protect her from "sinning" with Gregory Peck.
or "Tutankhamun Challenge Coin".
by his brothers and later became an Egyptian official.
the price depending on condition or if the coin has an unusual design, an inscription, or advertising.
Egyptian Magic Coin types:
There are three main types of these items and the first type (Type 1) is the most common.
2. Egyptian Magic Coin Obverse types
Type 1 - The Pharaoh's chair armrests have no marks and to the right of his head are three balls.
Type 2 - The Pharaoh's chair armrests have a group of horizontal lines halfway down and to the
right of his head are three balls.
Type 3 - The Pharaoh's chair armrests have no marks, to the left of his head is a bird and to the
right of his head is an Ankh mark (a vertical loop).
3. Egyptian Magic Coin Reverse types
Type 1 - Below the Sphinx face is a bird with a short beak.
Type 2 - Below the Sphinx face is a bird with a long curved beak.
Type 3 - Below the Sphinx face is a squared squiggle and a fish.
Sears & Roebuck Catalog 1905 listing for a watch fob with an identical medallion:
4. Sears & Roebuck Catalog 1905 Watch Fob listing
The item appeared in the 1905 Sears & Roebuck Catalog Spring and Fall editions, also in 1906 and 1907.
The 1905 listing did not show the medallion's other side.
No. 4C16186 The latest craze.
Gentlemen's fob, ancient Egyptian design, silver plated, oxidized finish on German silver.
Length 5½ inches.
By 1907 the listing had a smaller size and the price had been reduced:
5. Sears & Roebuck Catalog 1907 Watch Fob listing
This listing shows the other side of the watch fob.
A Sears & Roebuck Watch Fob:
6. Sears & Roebuck Watch Fob
Bronze, plated, 6 inches (15cm), 34.45gm (total), 23.39gm (fob only)
This one has seen some use:
7. Sears & Roebuck Watch Fob Coin
Bronze, plated, 32mm, 11.05gm, Type 1
An Egyptian Magic Coin appears in the 1946 David Selznick film "Duel in the Sun", a Western film
set in the 1880's at a large southwestern cattle ranch.
as both films were produced by Selznick International Pictures.
sexy "half-breed" girl, and Walter Huston as a travelling preacher.
it will keep her "pure". It doesn't work.
8. Walter Huston gives Jennifer Jones a medallion on a chain
9. Film medallion - Pharaoh side
10. Film medallion - Sphinx side
For more information, please visit: Coins in Movies - Duel in the Sun
Egyptian Magic Coin with Swastika:
11. Egyptian Magic Coin with Swastika
Bronze, 32mm, 13.13gm, Type 1
This item is a standard Type 1 with the addition of a Swastika and intials on the reverse.
There is also a logo with the initials "FEK" or "PEK", this may be a manufacturer.
Egyptian Magic Coin with Central Electric and Okonite advertising:
12. Egyptian Magic Coin advertising for Central Electric Okonite
Bronze, 32mm, 9.74gm, Obverse Type 1
This one has a loop for wearing it as jewelry or an amulet
The Central Electric Company of Chicago sold electrical supplies.
The Okonite Company was one of the first US makers of insulated electrical wire and cable.
Early customers included Thomas Edison and Samuel Morse.
Egyptian Magic Coin from France with obelisk obverse:
13. Egyptian Magic Coin from France with obelisk obverse
Bronze, 33mm, 9.42gm, Reverse Type 1
The obverse has an obelisk and several small sphinxes in two rows leading to a temple.
The reverse has the same sphinx and pyramids reverse as a standard magic coin.
This one came from France and was possibly made there.
Egyptian Magic Coin Cleopatra-Bird Variety:
14. Egyptian Magic Coin Cleopatra-Bird Variety
White metal, 32mm, 10.50gm, Reverse Type 1
Obverse: Cleopatra facing right wearing bird headdress and to right, a small bird also facing right.
Reverse: The Egyptian Magic Coin sphinx-pyramids design.
Egyptian Magic Coin with toning:
15. Egyptian Magic Coin with toning
Bronze, 32mm, 9.87gm, Type 1
Egyptian Magic Coin with gold plating:
16. Egyptian Magic Coin with gold plating
Bronze, 32mm, 8.64gm, Type 1, gold-plated
Someone took an ordinary Egyptian Magic Coin and gold-plated it.
Egyptian Magic Coin made from zinc:
17. Egyptian Magic Coin made from zinc
Zinc, 32mm, 7.11gm, Type 1, lots of corrosion
A new low, an Egyptian Magic Coin made from zinc.
Egyptian Magic Coin colorized with painted colors:
18. Egyptian Magic Coin with loop and colorized with painted colors
Bronze, 32mm, 10.02gm, Type 1, painted
In this one, the Pharaoh side is colored blue and the Sphinx side is turquoise, red, and white.
These items are usually hand-painted and come in various colors.
and these items have occasionally been marketed as mementos of the performances.
Egyptian Magic Coin with Seated Pharaoh:
This is an alternate variety, with the common elements but smaller in size and with a different design.
19. Egyptian Magic Coin with seated Pharaoh and loop
White metal, 26mm, 4.30gm
This example is similar to the standard magic coins but is smaller.
It is plated with white metal, possibly silver.
The design is not quite the same as the standard magic coin.
The Pharaoh is facing but is seated on a mat, not a throne.
The Sphinx is facing right, on standard coins it faces left.
The pyramids get larger from right to left, standard coins are left to right.
It may have been manufactured in Britain or in a British Commonwealth country.
Egyptian Magic Coin Type 3:
An example of the rare Type 3 design.
20. Egyptian Magic Coin from Britain
Bronze, 32mm, 9.49gm, Type 3, silver-plated
This one has a slightly altered design from the regular version.
It came from England may have been manufactured in Great Britain or a British Commonwealth country.
Two coins for one:
21. Egyptian Magic Coin with coin attached
Bronze, 32mm, 12.15gm, Type 3
This one had a coin glued or soldered onto one side (Why?).
The attachment was not very good and the coins were able to be separated.
The weight with the attached coin is 17.91gm.
The coin is a British Straits Settlements five cent coin dated 1919.
It is possible that the work was done there.
Egyptian Magic Coin Sphinx on a colored glass button:
22. Egyptian Magic Coin sphinx design on a colored glass button
Colored glass, 32mm, 5.62gm, Reverse Type 1
This item is made of yellow glass.
One side is blank and the other has the Egyptian Magic Coin Sphinx design.
It was made in Czechoslovakia.
Egyptian Magic Coin variant with "Helen Trent" or "Pokémon" design:
This variety was created as a promotion on a radio program for a toothpaste brand.
23. Egyptian Magic Coin variant with "Helen Trent" or "Pokémon" design
Nickel or nickel-plated steel, 32mm, 11.08gm
This version uses the same symbols as a standard magic coin but in a different manner.
Sometimes the design is described as "Aztec", "Mexican", or "Asian".
took a photograph of one in January of 1948.
Life Magazine kept the photograph in their archives but did not use it in the magazine.
which ran from 1933 to 1960 and was sponsored by Kolynos tooth powder and toothpaste.
produced by the Nintendo company.
Others posted on Internet boards for identification have a loop attached.
Egyptian Magic Coin made into jewelry:
24. Egyptian Magic Coin made into jewelry pin
Bronze, 2-3/4 x 1-5/8 inches (7.0mm x 4.2mm), 29.26gm, Type 1
This ornate pin is made from a magic coin with crescents attached.
It looks like it is a one-of-a-kind item, possibly made from a metal belt buckle.
Origin unknown but possibly somewhere in the Middle East or Egypt.
British or Australian Watch Fob variety:
This is an alternate variety, with the common elements but with a different design.
It arrived from Australia and may have been manufactured there or in a British Commonwealth country.
25. British / Australian Watch Fob
Bronze, plated, 5 inches (12.7cm), 23.28gm (total), 14.97gm (fob only)
26. British / Australian Watch Fob Coin
Bronze, plated, 32mm, 8.31gm
This one has a different image style than the standard magic coins.
The Pharaoh is facing left and the Sphinx is facing right.
Tarot Card designs may have inspired the Egyptian Magic Coin design:
27. Tarot Card examples
The coin design may come from the same source as the Rider-Waite Tarot Cards,
published in 1909 by William Rider, Dr Arthur Edward Waite, and artist Pamela Colman Smith.
The chariot card also has similarities.