Baron Münchhausen coin wins top honor

A 100-santīm (1 lat) commemorative silver coin honoring the legendary Baron Münchhausen has won top honors at this year’s Vicenza Numismatica coin show in Italy, the Bank of Latvia announced Oct. 13.

The coin, released by the Bank of Latvia in 2005 and minted in the Netherlands, was designed by Arvīds Priedīte and Jānis Strupulis. It honors the 285th anniversary of the birth of Karl Friedrich von Münchhausen (1720-1797), a real-life retired military man who came to be known for his storytelling of fantastic adventures. Münchhausen lived in Vidzeme, part of modern-day Latvia, from 1744-1750.

Baron Münchhausen’s stories, with further embellishments, were published by several authors beginning, some believe, with the German writer Rudolf Erich Raspe (1737-1794).

The coin also was a favorite of the Latvian public, winning the award “Latvijas gada monēta 2005,” receiving the greatest number of ballots in the contest, according to the Bank of Latvia.

Baron Münchhausen coin

The reverse of the Baron Münchhausen coin features images from his stories. (Photo courtesy of Bank of Latvia)

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *