Lion Thaler Counterfeit?

Discussion in 'World Coins' started by Redrazz, Jul 12, 2019 at 1:23 PM.

  1. Redrazz

    Redrazz New Member

    FD14D21A-BD3F-476F-A963-3AE7EB9ACC23.jpeg FF24AA4B-6226-44D1-8F16-7225731D23CC.jpeg 91782360-9C49-4DF6-8F47-C391E31BD6A2.jpeg

    Hi all,

    I picked up this Lion Thaler counterfeit a few days ago, mistaking it for the 1660 Rietberg contemporary counterfeit (copper plated silver). I am wondering if I completely wasted my money here, or if this is still some kind of contemporary counterfeit.

    This coin has the appearance of a 1589 Netherlands Lion Thaler. It is 40 millimetres in length and weighs 23.3 grams. It does not stick to a magnet.

    I also added a photo of the rim.

    Thank you!
    Seattlite86 likes this.
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  3. spirityoda

    spirityoda Coin Junky Supporter

    I am looking at my 17th century Krause catalog in the Netherlands section and your coin looks very much like the Daalder denomination, but on your coin I see no date. Do you know the date ? I think it supposed to be on the large lion side. Sorry I am not much help. This mystery will drive me nuts in a good way. Wait for more opinions/help...
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2019 at 2:15 PM
    Redrazz likes this.
  4. spirityoda

    spirityoda Coin Junky Supporter

    After looking at coins on Ebay I discovered where the date is. It's on The small lion side with that dude...1589

  5. spirityoda

    spirityoda Coin Junky Supporter

  6. spirityoda

    spirityoda Coin Junky Supporter

  7. Redrazz

    Redrazz New Member

  8. Chris B

    Chris B Well-Known Member

    To me this just has the looks of a coin that spent some time in the ground. I think it is a good coin.
    Seattlite86 and Redrazz like this.
  9. Redrazz

    Redrazz New Member

    It gives me the impression of being used, however it doesn’t appear to be silver. I’m not sure what purity the original Netherlands coins had, but this specimen has less than 80% silver.
  10. GDJMSP

    GDJMSP Numismatist Moderator

    And it should, they were produced with .750 silver. The weight has me a bit puzzled though as it should be 27.67 gm, and the coin has no where near enough wear on it to even come close to accounting for that - even with tolerances taken into account. Also, even though it was beyond common for more than a few of the mint masters to produce debased coins, I cannot even imagine any of them trying to debase a coin that much.

    Given that, and the size you report, I can only conclude that your assessment of it being a counterfeit is correct.
    Redrazz likes this.
  11. Redrazz

    Redrazz New Member

    Thank you for the information! I was pretty sure that it was. I guess now I’m curious if it’s a contemporary counterfeit or not.

    Attaching example of what I am now wondering it to be:
  12. GDJMSP

    GDJMSP Numismatist Moderator

    Could be, but unless you can find references stating such there's really no way to know for sure. *see below

    In what way ? What I mean is there's a couple of different ways to interpret your comment. Are you wondering if it's a thaler ? Answer to that is no. It's correct in detail for a 1589 Holland lion dollar - except the weight.

    Or, are you simply wondering if it's plated copper like the coin you linked ? Again, the answer is it could be. A specific gravity test would give you an indication but it really wouldn't be definitive. About the only way to know for sure would be a destructive test of one kind or another.

    I would comment further to say that out and out counterfeits during that time period in the Netherlands were certainly not unheard of, but they weren't exactly commonplace either. Penalties, even for minting debased coins, let alone counterfeits, were to say the least extremely severe. One of the more common punishments in the Netherlands was literally boiling the offender alive. Point being, not a whole lot of people did it.

    * I would also comment that the genuine 1589 Holland lion dollar was not exactly a low mintage coin but it wasn't a high mintage either. Between 1596-1591 Holland minted 321,528 lion dollars. The 2 years prior to that they only minted just inder 60,000 and the year after that just under 20,000. My point is, it's not really a scarce coin to the best of my knowledge so not particularly likely to be a counterfeit made to fool collectors. But, it certainly could be.
    Redrazz likes this.
  13. Seattlite86

    Seattlite86 Outspoken Member

    Agreed, this coin would fool me from the photos (not knowing the weight, but I wouldn’t buy without knowing it).

    @Redrazz can you elaborate on your desire for contemporary counterfeits and your interest in Talers? I don’t know many people, who are your age, who are interested/knowledgeable in these coins.
    spirityoda likes this.
  14. Redrazz

    Redrazz New Member

    Sorry for the confusion! I guess I was wondering if it was a silver plated copper counterfeit. I don’t know much about counterfeiting and wasn’t sure how commonplace it truly was- or how it was done.

    I appreciate all of your information! This definitely helps.
  15. Redrazz

    Redrazz New Member

    I’m studying history at my university and that is one of my main reasons for being interested particularly in pre-19th century coins. The different designs of each German state is a fun collecting point for me, and one day I hope to own a number of my own thalers (only one right now- broke college student!). I’ve also spent a few weeks in Germany and hope to collect coins from the places I’ve traveled.

    While I enjoy my thalers, medieval coinage is also high on my list. Unfortunately, it seems like there aren’t too many people in my area specialising in those pieces. That’s why I’ve posted a few coins here (either from the coin store I work at or from my own finds!). There are plenty of coin stores in my area, but the closest fella specialising in these kinds of coins is located two hours away.
    Seattlite86 likes this.
  16. Redrazz

    Redrazz New Member

    Also, the idea of contemporary counterfeits is just neat to me, as there were some severe penalties. It’s just a small collection that I have right now, though!
    Seattlite86 likes this.
  17. Seattlite86

    Seattlite86 Outspoken Member

    I actually live in Germany. Well, at least for the next month or so. Some of my German friends have helped me expand my German states collection to a respectable level (@micbraun @Rheingold ). My favorite German states coins are probably those from Basel. I don’t own any of their Talers, but those dragons (basilica) are awesome! Mansfeld also has some really cool ones, too. I also love the city scapes. Okay. There are a lot of Talers that interest me! Can you share a photo of yours?

    Also, MA-Shops is a great place for both medieval and German states coins; they are the eBay of that area and have very reputable dealers. Feel free to ask me or the two I tagged should you have questions on something you are considering purchasing.

    Edit: I’ve always wanted to work in or own a coin shop. :)
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