Proclamation Coin - Netherlands Silver Guilder

May 4, 2009

1794 Netherlands (Holland) Silver Guilder or Gulden

In my previous entry about Australian proclamation coins I mentioned the Silver Guilder (or Gulden) of the Netherlands which was valued at 2s in the proclamation. A large 30millimetre coin minted from about 10.5grams of 0.911 fine silver you can see an example of the 1794 proclamation guilder above. Silver guilders were minted from the late 17th century to the early 19th century in most of the provinces of what would be come the united nation of the Netherlands in 1815. Interestingly one year after the coin above was minted the provinces were united (under French influence) as the Batavian Republic. It was not until 1815 that the rightful heir to the Dutch throne returned from exile (when the Napolean was deposed) to found the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

The obverse depicts the robed godess Athena (the godess of Wisdom and the protector of Athens) with her left arm resting on a large book atop a pillar. In her left hand she holds an upturned spear. The date is shown in the exergue. The legend reads "HAC NITIMVR HANC TVEMVR". This loosely translates to "We Protect (or Defend) the one and are supported (or protected) by the other". In this case the one is the helmet and spear of Athena and the other is the book on the pedestal, which is presumed to be the Christian Bible.

The reverse depicts a shield with a crown, in the middle of the shield is a lion holding 7 arrows. The 7 arrows represent the 7 provinces of the Netherlands. The denomination of the coin is shown either side of the shield. The legend reads "MO:ARG:ORD:FED:BELG:HOLL". The legend varies a little between coins from different provinces, for example, the HOLL on this coin signifies it was minted in the province of Holland. The rest of the legend can be translated as "Silver Coin of the United Netherlands of Holland".

The Netherlands Silver Guilders are an interesting coin buy because there's a wider range of varieties available to the collector. I've purchased 4 of them and they've all varied in condition widely. The first couple showed good detail but had clearly been either dipped or polished and were not of much interest to me. The second couple were much more original showing darker toning and still having good detail. The coin shown above it quite dark and shows wear only on the highest points and considerable strike weakness through the lion on the reverse. In spite of this the above coin is the ideal coin for the collector, it shows original surfaces, lovely toning, and is an appealing example of the type.

Posted by mnemtsas at May 4, 2009 8:15 PM
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