The 20 Lire and Soon the 20 Marks.

0
Revenant

146 views

The 1882 20L coin arrived recently and I'm very happy to have it. It's a great addition to my growing set of smaller European gold coins from the late 19th and early 20th century - a group of coins I call my "golden nickels," because they're all about the size of a US nickel and because of what happened at around that same point in history with the "no cents" V nickels in 1883.

DSC_7311.thumb.jpg.3db816e56b6207870898b6219d50683f.jpgDSC_7312.thumb.jpg.9b13ff0b27bccfe345de74b66a8cd17f.jpg

It's a group of coins from the pre-Great War period that I think I'll always find endlessly fascinating. All of the currencies were pegged to gold and convertible to each other through gold, to the point that the Swiss 20 franc, the French 20 Franc and the Italian 20 Lire were the same gold weight (0.1867 ozt) and the coins were essentially interchangeable.

The Euro and the unified currency zone was hailed as such a huge thing about 20 years ago, but, looking at these, I can't help but think it was less an accomplishment and more of a semi-return to what had existed previously.

The third stimulus check was passed and were we amongst the first to get it, having already filed and gotten our 2020 return, so I got the green-light to order an NGC MS62 1913-A Prussian 20 Mark - from one of the last years they were made, heading into the conflict that made these coins endangered and then extinct as circulating currency. My French Rooster is also from that year.

I'm really wondering lately - with what others have said about the world coin market and the coin market in general - and I'm wondering if these checks going to people like me, who are into collectables and who didn't suffer job loss or much hardship in 2020, is helping putting money and bids into the collectables markets and not just the stock market through things like Robinhood and WeBull. I keep hearing about surveys saying most people are saving the money and we're saving most of it to, but, if you get free money out of nowhere and you have a hobby you enjoy it's hard to not treat yourself a little.

I decided to go with the 20 Mark over a Swiss 20 Franc for now, even though the 20F has been on my radar longer, because:

- My wife also has a strong affinity for Germany

- I already have a Swiss 10F from 1922 that has essentially the same obverse so I feel like the 20F adds less overall to my collection.

- I love the look of the German war eagle on the reverse of this design.

- It is from the reign of Wilhelm II and I just like Willems Wilhelms and Williams. 🤣

One nice thing is all of this is that most of these coins have been graded in more recent times and they're all mostly in newer gen holders l, which I'm hoping will mean several of them will soon go great together in a nice little display.

Generic image just to show and conversation for now but I'm looking forward to getting the 1913 I ordered and seeing it in person.

25872248_1.thumb.jpg.f63762d1e5f910ef73d3bc42e22adb1f.jpg

0


6 Comments


Recommended Comments

I think at least for the late 1800s italy and friends were in a "Latin monetary union" that broke down when it turned out the vatican was quietly debasing its coins

kaiser is collectable always.  made a great coin say whatever else you want about him.  I sold one of those 1900 20 marks 2 years ago and sort of regret that. 

Link to comment
1 hour ago, deposito said:

I think at least for the late 1800s italy and friends were in a "Latin monetary union" that broke down when it turned out the vatican was quietly debasing its coins

kaiser is collectable always.  made a great coin say whatever else you want about him.  I sold one of those 1900 20 marks 2 years ago and sort of regret that. 

That would make sense and explain why they all have the same agw. Clearly I need to look into this more. 😅 But, yeah, Italy, France, Switzerland and I think the Netherlands too are all the same and the British Sovereign, the US $5 coin and the Prussian 20 Mark all seem to be roughly equivalent.

Now that I have more than 3 coins I think I want to build out a custom set for these because that set would take all of my 1-coin registry sets and present them in the way that I think of them. lol

Edit: I take that back. The 10 Golden is about 5%ish more than the 20 Franc/Lire.

Edited by Revenant
Link to comment
17 hours ago, Revenant said:

That would make sense and explain why they all have the same agw. Clearly I need to look into this more. 😅 But, yeah, Italy, France, Switzerland and I think the Netherlands too are all the same and the British Sovereign, the US $5 coin and the Prussian 20 Mark all seem to be roughly equivalent.

Now that I have more than 3 coins I think I want to build out a custom set for these because that set would take all of my 1-coin registry sets and present them in the way that I think of them. lol

Edit: I take that back. The 10 Golden is about 5%ish more than the 20 Franc/Lire.

Don't forget about the Spanish 20 peseta gold coin which went into circulation in 1890 through 1904 with restrikes of the original dies dating 1961 and 1962. The number engraved into the obverse stars denotes the year of striking. (For example, 19 in the left star and 61 in the right star stands for 1961 and 18 in the left star and 90 in the right star for 1890). The date on the coin denotes the year of its authorization. When Spain adopted the peseta, they did so with the intention of joining the Latin Monetary Union. This never came to pass but their coins were all aligned with the other "20" gold coins nonetheless. The weight of the 20 peseta is exactly that of your 20 lire coin at 6.4516 grams. The Danish 20 kroner and Netherlands 10 Golden are in a class all by themselves. The Danes were aligned to the Scandinavian Monetary Union with Sweden and Norway. Their 20 Kroner gold coin has an AGW of .2593oz pure gold. 

Link to comment
1 hour ago, coinsbygary said:

Don't forget about the Spanish 20 peseta gold coin which went into circulation in 1890 through 1904 with restrikes of the original dies dating 1961 and 1962. The number engraved into the obverse stars denotes the year of striking. (For example, 19 in the left star and 61 in the right star stands for 1961 and 18 in the left star and 90 in the right star for 1890). The date on the coin denotes the year of its authorization. When Spain adopted the peseta, they did so with the intention of joining the Latin Monetary Union. This never came to pass but their coins were all aligned with the other "20" gold coins nonetheless. The weight of the 20 peseta is exactly that of your 20 lire coin at 6.4516 grams. The Danish 20 kroner and Netherlands 10 Golden are in a class all by themselves. The Danes were aligned to the Scandinavian Monetary Union with Sweden and Norway. Their 20 Kroner gold coin has an AGW of .2593oz pure gold. 

I'll keep that in mind. :Dlol 

These coins are nice to collect type coins of and they've largely replaced the Silver NCLT as my passion and graded coin / registry / "higher-end" collecting focus. 1) They're gold. 2) They're pretty. 3) There's a lot of nice, fun variety and 4) they're big enough to be enjoyable and not teany-tiny like a US gold dollar and they're still cheap enough to be reasonably affordable in nice grades.

I have a Swiss 10F and I've wanted a 20F for a while but it hasn't happened yet. That'll probably be next. Then I might look into the 20 Kroner or the Peseta since you're bringing those up for me. I've been focused on Europe but maybe one of these days I'll branch into Latin America, like some of the Colombian gold issues from this period.

Link to comment

Very nice coins! Collecting LMU coins is very popular and plenty of designs are available - you can get a lot of them for not much more than bullion however some are really quite rare, some of the Albania issues seem to be key targets.

http://www.rene-finn.de/lmugold.html

The list is not strictly LMU but the specification is the same. Then there are all the silver and copper issues too and a full set of gold coins of the German States is probably even more of a challenge!

Link to comment
7 hours ago, ColonialCoinsUK said:

The list is not strictly LMU but the specification is the same. Then there are all the silver and copper issues too and a full set of gold coins of the German States is probably even more of a challenge!

Going for full sets of just about anything gold is out of my budget and beyond my current ambitions. I'm just going to keep adding these as I get a chance at prices I can tolerate. 😅

Link to comment

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now