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.
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 we were 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.