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Silver coin: numismatics. Collectible coins. ancient silver coin
Silver coin: numismatics. Collectible coins. ancient silver coin

Now the modern realities of the economy are such that the crisis that has affected the banking business and almost all areas of production is forcing most we althy people to look for new, more reliable ways to invest their free capital from its further depreciation. As you know, art, paintings and antiques can both rise in price and fall. That is why today the interest in collecting old and rare coins has increased so sharply.


The science that studies and compiles descriptions of coins and medals is called numismatics. Specialists in these items or ordinary collectors are called numismatists.

For the first time in Europe, interest in old and antique coins began to arise back in the Renaissance. At first, they were perceived only from the point of view of aesthetics, and no one considered them as a monument of monetary circulation.

It is believed that the famous Italian poet Petrarch, who lived in 1304-1374, had a fairly large collection of ancient Roman pennies, since his passion was numismatics. Coins, more precisely, their collecting, over time has become a very prestigious and fashionable occupation. But then people who were fond of this business were not yet called numismatists. Fans of various antique items and rarities were called antiques. Usually they belonged to high society and had impressive financial resources, as well as a fairly high level of education.

silver coins

As you know, in the 16th century in the castles of aristocrats and royal palaces there were already more than 900 münz-cabinets, in which many old coins were kept. Special employees worked there, whose duty was the description and attribution of coins. However, their works do not have any credibility, as they compensate for their lack of knowledge with their assumptions.

The history of the emergence of numismatics as a science

Professor of archeology Eckel (1737-1798), who taught at the University of Vienna, is considered the founder of numismatics. He was the first to come up with the idea that it was necessary to systematize coins according to geographical and historical principles. After a long and painstaking work, the book "The Science of Ancient Coins" was published from under his pen in eight volumes.

Already in the 18th century, the first lectures on science, which was called the beautiful word "numismatics", were read at European universities in Saxony and Sweden. Coins at this time began to be considered from the pointview of art history and archeology.

It can be said that numismatics appeared in Russia at the moment when Peter I in 1721 brought to St. Petersburg a collection of coins bought in Hamburg from the antiquarian Moders and placed it in the Kunstkamera. Bayer's first work on the circulation of coins in Russia was published in St. Petersburg in 1734. Nevertheless, a large number of inaccuracies were also found in his work. And only in the middle of the century before last a truly scientific approach began to be applied to numismatics.

Why money was made from silver

From time immemorial, mankind began to use silver to make money, as it has all the necessary characteristics for their production - extraordinary plasticity and external attractiveness, which persisted for a long time.

I must say that a silver coin always contains impurities of some metal, and most often it is copper. It gives silver a significant wear resistance. This metal in its pure form is almost never used to produce money. The only exception in our time are investment coins. In Russia, silver has been used as a means of payment since time immemorial until the early 30s of the last century.

Modern Russian banks annually issue many collectible high quality coins of various weights and denominations. They are no longer used as a means of payment. The same money is minted by Sberbank. Silver coins come out in very limited editions andare used either as souvenirs or end up in numismatist collection sets.

The only one in the world

The rarest coin is the so-called Etna tetradrachm, as it has survived to this day in a single copy. For the first time it became known in 1867, when it was acquired by the Castellani brothers, who lived in Rome. In 1882 they sold it to Lucien de Hirsch, an antique dealer from Belgium. Two years after his death, the entire collection of ancient coins was transferred by relatives to the Belgian state, including the silver tetradrachm Etna. Since then, it has been kept in the Brussels Royal Library. It is now on public display at the Jerusalem Museum.

ancient silver coin

The silver tetradrachm Etna is over 2500 years old. It was made in Sicily in 476 BC. The weight of the coin is 17.23 grams and the diameter is 26 mm. The reverse is decorated with the head of a satyr, and the obverse is decorated with Zeus the Thunderer sitting on a throne with a lightning bolt in his hand.

It is interesting that more ancient coins were found, which date back to the 12th century. BC, but the Etna tetradrachm differs from them in its stunning engraving and perfect condition. This coin has never been sold at auction, but if it did, then numismatists are confident that its value could exceed $ 12 million, which is much higher than the price of the most expensive coin in the world - the American double eagle of gold minting. But so far, this rarity is not planned to be put up for auction.

Antique coins

One of the most famous in the worldantique valuables is the ancient silver coin "Ides of March". It is a silver denarius minted in the Roman Empire and dedicated to the assassination of Julius Caesar, which took place on March 15, 44 BC. e.

Almost all of its copies are made of silver, but two examples are known made of gold. One of these coins was put on public display in the British Museum.

Antique silver coins

Now more than 60 pieces of these coins are kept in private collections and state funds. On their obverse, there is a portrait of the murderer of Julius Caesar - Brutus, and on the reverse - a cap and a pair of daggers with the words EID MAR, which means "Ides of March", i.e. the date of the death of the emperor.

Rare Georgian coins

During the years of the existence of the USSR, many researchers have carefully studied Eastern numismatics and, in particular, the coins of Georgia.

The Abbasid dirhems minted in Tiflis are very rare coins. The very first and most famous of them was released in 825-826, and the last - in 942-943. Unfortunately, the money is not all years preserved. That is why each new copy is of great interest both for the history of Georgia and for numismatics.

Abaz is another old Georgian silver coin. It was used at the beginning of the 17th century. Its name is associated with the name of the king of Persia, Abbas I the Great, who ruled from 1571 to 1629.

In 1605-1606, the abas was minted from silver weighing 10-11 grams and 25-26 mm in diameter. On the front side was depicted a lion with a curved tail, and around it -floral ornament that occupies all the free space. On the reverse side there are two curved and intersecting lines, and in the middle - the same lion, but smaller. This coin is kept in the Hermitage as an antique exhibit.

Georgian silver coin

At the end of the 18th century, the Persian state began to gradually weaken and practically ceased to control the petty khans, of which there were a large number in the Caucasus at that time. The country broke up into small possessions with their rulers. Finally the Georgian kings became independent. Transcaucasian khanates began to produce their money from silver.

After Georgia was annexed to the Russian Empire, another mint was organized in Tiflis. The silver abase became the basis of the monetary system here. It was equated to the Russian 20 kopecks. In addition, there were two more denominations: a semi-abase is 10 and a double abase is 40 kopecks.

The emblem of Tbilisi was depicted on the front side of the coin - a stone crown with teeth and the inscription "Tiflis", and below - a branch of an olive tree and palm leaves. On the reverse side - the denomination and the words "Georgian silver".

Tsarist Russia money

Royal silver coins have always been distinguished by high quality and purity of the alloy, even in those times when the most severe financial crises occurred. That is why these items, weighing only a few grams, are not only of historical, but also of aesthetic interest to their owner.

Russian royal coins are quite diverse and can take their rightful place in collectionsnumismatist collectors. It should be noted that the history of money is extremely fascinating and informative. Take, for example, the date of June 20, 1810, when the Manifesto was adopted, according to which the ruble was approved as the main monetary unit of the Russian Empire. Its composition is silver 4 spools 21 shares, or 18 g. This silver coin has now become a legal monetary unit and has existed throughout the 19th century.

From 1839 to 1843, another monetary reform was carried out, as a result of which rapidly depreciating banknotes were replaced by new credit notes. Now for one silver ruble they gave 3 rubles and 50 kopecks in banknotes. How much is a silver ruble worth now? Its value ranges from 870 to 60 thousand rubles, depending on the circulation and the condition of the coin.

Royal coins dating back to the 19th century are common, as they were produced in huge numbers. Therefore, even an ordinary collector can purchase them at a very affordable price. As for rare specimens, their cost can reach several tens of thousands of dollars.

Konstantinovsky ruble

Probably the most mysterious and famous coin of Tsarist Russia is the silver Konstantinovsky ruble. First of all, the name itself is surprising, since everyone knows that an emperor named Constantine never existed.

It all started after the death of Alexander I, who had no children. Therefore, his brother Konstantin Pavlovich was to take his place. But in 1819 he voluntarily abdicated, and everyone knew about it.a few close ones. After 4 years, a manifesto of Alexander I was drawn up, in which all power passed to the third brother, Nikolai Pavlovich. This became known only after the package with the manifesto was opened in the State Council. But the fact is that the guard has already sworn allegiance to Konstantin. Thinking that he was forced to give up power by force, the secret society of the Decembrists and the soldiers under their leadership refused to take the oath to the new tsar. But, as you know, the uprising was crushed, the rebels were sent to hard labor, and Nicholas I ascended the throne.

I must say that at this time the country remained without a ruler for two weeks. Deciding to play it safe, the manager of the St. Petersburg Mint decided to make a trial sample with the image of Konstantin in denominations of 1 ruble.

In total, 6 Konstantinovsky coins were issued. Until 1878, they were classified, and then divided among the relatives of the emperor. Two of them are now kept in museums in Russia, one is in the United States, and the rest are in private collections in different countries. Its estimated value at auction may exceed $100,000.

Coins of Emperors Nicholas I and Nicholas II

Coins during the reign of Nicholas I (1825-1855) were often minted for some memorable dates, and this tradition began precisely with his coming to power. This is how a silver coin with the image of the Alexander Column appeared in 1834, in 1839 - with the Borodino Chapel, and in 1841 - a coin in honor of the marriage of the heir in denominations of one and a half rubles.

This money had no circulationonly in the Russian Empire, but also in Poland. For example, the Polish zloty was equal to 15 kopecks, and 20 kopecks to 40 grosz. During his reign, silver coins were issued in denominations of 5, 10, 20, 25 kopecks and fifty kopecks, as well as one and a half rubles.

Coins issued by Nicholas II (1895 - 1917) testify to the difficult and tragic events in the life of the country. This emperor ascended the throne at a time when ever-increasing revolutionary sentiments began to appear. His entire reign fell on troubled times tearing the country apart. At the very beginning of his reign, Finance Minister Witte carried out a large-scale monetary reform. Large denominations of gold coins were issued. In addition, do not forget about small money. Coins with denominations of 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 50 kopecks and the ruble were put into use.

Nikolaev coins

In 1896, a special, so-called coronation, silver ruble was issued in the amount of 190 thousand pieces. All of them were distributed to those present at the coronation. The artist A. Vasyutinsky worked on the portrait of the emperor. Since then, this money has been passed down from generation to generation and is quite well preserved, so these Nikolaev coins are not very expensive.

It is necessary to especially note the money issued in 1898. These coins were dedicated to the opening of the monument to Alexander II. They were minted only 5 thousand copies, and this particular monument was depicted on their reverse side. Also in 1912, another commemorative silver ruble was issued, now dedicated to the opening of the statue of Emperor Alexander III. Themeven fewer were produced - 2 thousand copies. These two collectible coins are in extraordinary demand due to their small circulation.

As you can see, almost every coin of the era of the reign of Emperors Nicholas I and Nicholas II captures interesting events, the history and greatness of the Russian Empire.

Post-revolutionary silver coins

The design of money in the Soviet Union had to contain the heraldry of the state, as well as embody financial and ideological ideas that required thoughtful images on both sides of the coins. And in 1923 it was finally developed and approved. Silver coins of the USSR began to be issued in 1924.

The reverse side of the 50 kopecks was decorated with the figure of a worker with a raised hammer in his hands, standing in front of the anvil. In the background at the feet were a plow, sickle and gear.

The reverse of the silver ruble, issued in 1924, depicts the figures of a worker and a peasant. According to the ideological plan, the first shows the way to the second to a better life. In the background of this composition are the outlines of plants and the rising sun.

From 1921 to 1923, new coins were minted for the RSFSR, which had not yet been put into circulation. It was decided to take their image for new coins already in the USSR, but with only two changes. The first of them - on change coins with a face value of 10, 15 and 20 kopecks on the side with a number, branches with leaves were replaced with ears of wheat, and the second - instead of the republican Russian coat of arms, the coat of arms of the Soviet Union was placed.

Finally, on February 24, 1924, silver coins of the USSR were issued inappeal. This is how a new monetary system was born on the ruins of the Russian Empire.

Silver coins of the USSR

Silver coins were minted until 1931 and made at the Leningrad Mint. Some part of fifty dollars, namely the issue of 1924 with the inscription "T.R" on the edge, at the request of the new government, was minted in London at the Royal Mint. They were in circulation until the spring of 1961.

900 silver was used for rubles and fifty dollars, and 500 silver was used for change coins with a low denomination. At the same time, so little small money was minted that they are one of the rarest and most valuable coins of that period. The money of 1931 is considered especially rare, since only a few of them have survived. Therefore, the cost of silver coins made this year may exceed 120 thousand rubles.

Collection coins

Numismatists have always been interested only in the money that is somehow different from the rest and was issued in a relatively small circulation. Important information about history, culture, economy, etc. can be concentrated in this small piece of metal. Just imagine how many different people could own one particular coin!

Collectible coins are very valuable from an educational point of view. Antique and medieval monetary samples can turn out to be coins of once very powerful empires, as well as small states. Such collections are money collected and systematized according to one of the characteristics. It can becoins of ancient states or only those related to the Roman Empire, with portraits of the rulers of Europe or one denomination - Russian silver coins, fifty dollars, for example.

Money as a profitable investment tool

Now many states from time to time resort to issuing coins from precious metals: silver, gold, palladium and platinum. This can only be done by the central bank of the country. They are intended both for investment and for creating a personal savings fund of citizens. Such coins are usually called investment or weight coins. They are necessarily indicated by the nominal value, but in fact their price in the market is much higher. Sometimes some collectible, commemorative, and commemorative coins issued by various countries also belong to investment coins.

For investors, they are valuable because they are made of almost the purest precious metal. When buying or selling in Russia, they are not subject to VAT, as well as when purchasing bullions of precious metals. It turns out that the savings is 18% of the total value of the coin, i.e. the depositor buys as much money as he needs, and at the same time does not contribute anything to the state treasury.

Another advantage of such a contribution is that if a person is not able to purchase a whole bar, then he has a way out - to buy one or more valuable coins. It should be noted that they are in no way subject to inflation, adverse economic situations and other harmful factors. They also cannot depreciate, but on the contrary,their price goes up year by year. You can sell such precious items at any time - either to a bank or to a private person. Therefore, this is a fairly high-quality, reliable and long-term investment tool.

Gold and silver coins of Russia belonging to this category can be purchased directly from banks, but before that you will need to contact a representative and clarify whether they are available, the current cost and other details of the purchase. Sberbank sells them the cheapest. Silver coins can be bought from individuals and companies, but it will be much more expensive.

The cost of silver coins

There are two silver investment coins in Russia: "Sable" and "George the Victorious". The first one was released in 1995 and has 925 fineness, the second - in 2009 with 999 fineness. Both one and the other silver coin - 3 rubles face value. Their cost ranges from one to three thousand rubles.

New ruble designation

The Central Bank of Russia in June 2014 put into circulation 100 million coins, which depict a new monetary symbol - the letter "P" with a small horizontal stripe. In honor of this event, a commemorative silver coin with a face value of 3 rubles was minted, with a circulation of 1500 pieces. 500 of them have the quality of "proof" - a mirror surface on which a matte relief is applied. The remaining 1000 pieces have a different look - they are completely matte and are called "uncirculated".

An interesting fact is that until that time, neither in the Russian Empire, nor in the days of the USSR, the ruble had its own symbol, unlike the same Americandollar, Japanese yen, British pound, and more recently, the euro.

The ruble symbol was approved in December 2013 as a result of a popular vote held throughout the country.

Now in Russia there are several centers where ancient silver coins are studied. The State Historical Museum and the Hermitage are the main ones. By the way, the collection of the latter contains a truly huge number of various antique, medieval, Western European, Eastern and Russian coins.

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