Infobox Coin
Country = Canada
Denomination = Two dollars ("Toonie")
Value = 2.00
Unit = CAD
Mass = 7.3
Diameter = 28
Thickness = 1.8
Edge = Intermittent milled/smooth
Composition = outer ring
100% Ni
inner core
92% Cu,
6% Al,
2% Ni
Years of Minting = 1996–present
Catalog Number = -
Obverse = Toonie-obverse2004.jpg
Obverse Design = Elizabeth II, Queen of Canada
Obverse Designer = Susanna Blunt
Obverse Design Date = 2003
Reverse = Toonie-reverse.jpg
Reverse Design = Polar Bear in early summer on an ice floe
Reverse Designer = Brent Townsend
Reverse Design Date = 1996

Toonie (sometimes spelled Twonie or Twoonie) is the name of the two-dollar coin, a combination of the number "two" with the name of the "Loonie", Canada's one-dollar coin. In Canadian French it is sometimes known as a "polar", to rhyme with "Huard," for "Loonie."

Introduced on February 19, 1996 by Public Works minister Diane Marleau, the "Toonie" is a bi-metallic coin which bears an image of a polar bear, by Campbellford, Ontario artist Brent Townsend, on the reverse. The obverse, like all other current Canadian coins, has a portrait of Queen Elizabeth II. It is the only coin in Canada to have the "ELIZABETH II / D.G. REGINA" in a different typeface; it is also the only coin to consistently bear its issue date on the obverse.


When the coin was introduced a number of nicknames were suggested. Some of the early ones included the "bearie" (analogous to the Loonie and its loon), the "bearly", the "deuce" and the "doubloonie" (a play on "double Loonie" and the former Spanish doubloon coin). A joke refers to the coin as "The Queen with the Bear Behind", and thus the "moonie". Another joke poked fun at the then-weak Canadian dollar to American dollar exchange rate by suggesting that the coin be called "the American silver dollar"Fact|date=February 2007. In Vancouver, people were referring to the coin as "the peso" because it looked like a 10 peso coin from Mexico, and 10 pesos was worth about $2 Canadian at the time. Finally, the coin has been referred to as the "Bouchard"Fact|date=February 2007 (after Quebec separatist leader Lucien Bouchard), due to a few reports of the inside disc of the coin separating from the outside in early coins.

Another angle to the name pairs the word Toonie up with the Loonie to complete the reference to "loonie toonie" or the famous and popular Looney Tunes cartoons; an indirect jibe at Canadian politicians who introduced the coins replacing the paper currency equivalents.

The name Toonie became so widely accepted that in 2006 the Royal Canadian Mint secured the rights to it. A competition to name the bear resulted in the name "Churchill", a reference both to the common polar bear sightings in Churchill, Manitoba and Winston Churchill. [ [ Rcm - Mrc ] ]

Commemorative editions

First strikes


*Many "Toonies" in the first shipment of the coins were considered defective, because they could separate if struck hard or frozen, as the centre piece would shrink more than the outside. This problem quickly garnered media attention and eventually was believed to have been corrected, and the initial wave of so-called "Toonie popping" blew over a few months after the coin's introduction. Although the public appears to believe the Toonies were corrected, the coins can still be separated if struck hard or frozen. Such a separated coin may still be redeemed at a bank for its face value; however, Canada's Currency Act explicitly reads "No person shall ... melt down, break up or use otherwise than as currency any coin that is current and legal tender in Canada." [ [ Currency Act ] ] Punishment is a fine of up to $5000.00 and/or up to 5 years imprisonment.

ee also

* Canadian English
* Newfoundland 2 dollar coin (predating Canada's coin)


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • toonie — [to͞o′nē] n. [< TWO, on analogy with LOONIE] [Cdn. Informal] the Canadian two dollar coin …   English World dictionary

  • toonie — /tooh nee/, n. twoonie. * * * …   Universalium

  • toonie — noun A Canadian two dollar coin. Syn: doubloonie …   Wiktionary

  • toonie — I Canadian Slang the Canadian two dollar coin, pronounced too nee. 2 dollar coin II Canadian Slang Canadian two dollar coin. Modelled after loonie (q.v.). Also spelled tooney, twooney, twoonie, twonie, or twoney …   English dialects glossary

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  • toonie — /tooh nee/, n. twoonie …   Useful english dictionary

  • Coins of the Canadian dollar — Canadian coinage is the coinage of Canada, produced by the Royal Canadian Mint and denominated in Canadian dollars ($) or cents (¢). Contents 1 Denominations 2 Changes in coinage 3 Production …   Wikipedia

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