Another of the twelve apostles of Jesus to be given his own silver medal in the Apostles series by Czech Mint is St. Philip. Though he was of Hebrew origin, St. Philip’s name was Greek and it meant “Horse Lover”. The Patron Saint of Luxembourg, Uruguay and Sorrento, he is attributed to protect: confectioners, chandlers, hatters, pate makers and tanners. He newly adorns the charming mint of great spiritual and artistic value.
St. Philip hailed from Bethsaida as well as St. Peter and St. Andrew. Arguably, he was a disciple of St. John the Baptist. In images, he is depicted as a young man or as an old man with various symbols – usually a cross or a sceptre with a cross, a stone, a book, a bowl with a serpent and sometimes a basket full of loaves and fish. His portraits often include a scroll – just as the obverse side of the new pure silver medal authored by the talented decorative artist Mária Filová.
The reverse side of the medal depicts a legendary part of St. Phillip's life. First, preaching the gospel in Scythia for twenty years. Pagans forced him to sacrifice to their God Mars, but when preparing the fire for the offering, a huge dragon appeared below the idol and killed the grand priest’s son and two Pagan priests who had ordered their servants to keep St. Philip fettered. Everyone who was hit by the dragon’s breath fell ill. St. Philip advised them: “Listen to me – break this idol and erect Jesus Christ’s cross in its place, and when you all worship him your dead will rise and your sick will heal. But you all have to do this.” The sick gladly did so and St. Philip banished the dragon to the desert forever, resurrected the dead, healed the sick and baptised everyone. He later left Scythia for Hierapolis where he eradicated the Hebronite heresy. Another legend says that he was captured by Pagans at 87 years of age: tortured, crucified and stoned to death.
The pure silver medal dedicated to St. Philip is issued as a limited edition of 500 units. This is how many collections may boast this beautiful addition.