Louis Kossuth's Fundraiser Forint Notes

Discussion in 'Paper Money' started by kaparthy, Feb 27, 2019.

  1. kaparthy

    kaparthy Supporter! Supporter

    Kossuth 1848 US 1.jpg
    (These popped up somewhat off-topic in the Hungarian Inflation thread here. See HotWheelEarl's post #41 and its precursors.)

    These notes were issued as 1- 2- and 5-Forint. As I understand the story, these were sold for dollars to raise money for the next revolution which never happened.

    Louis Kossuth (1802-1894) spent his life in politics, working for Hungarian independence. He participated in nationalist, liberal reform movements. Hungarian aristocrats formed a national diet in 1825 and Kossuth served as secretary to one of the ministers. After the diet was dissolved, Kossuth published his own accounts of their sessions and eventually was arrested.

    After the failure of the 1848 revolutions, Louis Kossuth escaped via the Ottoman Empire to France. He then went to the UK before coming to the USA in December 1851. Here he was treated like Lafayette, given parades, having towns named for him. He met Abraham Lincoln in Springfield. However, he fell into diplomatic embarrassments and returned to the UK ahead of more serious problems. Speaking to a German-American club in favor of the election of Franklin Pierce in the 1852 election was a blunder. (See the XYZ Affair.) Conspiring with American military officers to overthrow the government in Haiti was far beyond any limits.

    It was also typical of Kossuth. In 1851, he was aboard an American ship, the USS Mississippi from Turkey, in France, when he insisted on speaking to a public gathering. French president (not yet emperor) Louis Bonaparte forbade it. Kossuth spoke anyway, and in so doing violated the neutrality of his American hosts. He was put off the Mississippi at Gibraltar.

    Louis Kossuth was an aristocrat and a Hungarian. He had no sympathies with those outside his class and few with the other ethnic groups within the Hungarian domain. Other revolutionaries found him impossible to work with. On the plus side, during his imprisonment 1837-1840 he taught himself English by reading Shakespeare. When he visited the UK in 1851, even his political enemies were impressed with his speeches.

    He is considered a national hero. Only King Stephen ranks higher. Kossuth has been honored on several series of coins and notes since Hungary’s complete independence from Austria following World War One.

    (One florin)
    Central vignette in neo-classical style shows hero with sword and spear standing over slain monarch. Legend around on buckled leather belts: SZABADSÁGÉRT / ISTENÉRT / HAZÁERT (For Freedom / For God / For Home ) [ert – for; for the sake of; szabad – free; szabadság- freedom; isten – god; haz – house; hazá (at to by) home]

    Left vignette – Three Graces. Right vignette – goddess with pen, scroll resting on column; anvil, machinery on ground.

    Legend in Hungarian in engraver’s script reads from left of central vignette and continues to right of center.
    Ezem pénzjegy álladalmi es egy ezüst forinthuszas gyanánt nevszerinti értéke által biztositatiki / minden magyar közpenztar vagy is három elfolgadtatik’s teljes a közallomány
    This money ticket stands for one silver florin20 in place of nominal value by means of assurance the all hungarian public treasury is also three money receipts to have accepted complete public stock (store).

    What that is supposed to mean is not clear. I get the first part that this note is good for one silver florin. After that, it is not grammatical enough or more likely my Hungarian is not commercial enough. I do note that the word “elfolgadtatik’s” has an apostrophe which I have never seen in Hungarian. Elfolgad means “received” (for instance, money) or “collected” and tatik means “has accepted.”
    “This note will be redeemed for one florin in sets of 20 after three subscriptions have been paid into and been accepted by the Hungarian people’s treasury.”
    Signed lower right by Louis Kossuth (in Hungarian, Kossuth Lajos: family name first)
    At left exergue: Toppan, Carpenter, Casilear & Co., Phila.
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  3. gsalexan

    gsalexan Intaglio aficionado

    Really interesting information! Here is an unissued example from 1852 that was intended, I think, specifically for the New York area. I think Kossuth is shown in the lower left. This one is in English and looks more like a 4 percent loan.

    Hungary 1852 1 dollar Kossuth.jpg

    Hungary 1852 Kossuth cu.jpg
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  4. MEC2

    MEC2 Enormous Member

    These are my examples, two were scanned against a black background, the rest against a white, all are on very thin paper with great engraving. I saw the One Forint note and said... dude, there are cannons and cannonballs on that note. I am going to have it... and why stop, collect them all!





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