New 1-lat Latvian coins honor Rīga and, just in time for Jāņi, beer

To honor the 810th anniversary of the city’s founding, the Bank of Latvia has released a commemorative silver coin honoring the capital of Rīga. Also issued is a coin marking the Latvian midsummer celebration, Jāņi.

The proof quality Rīga coin was designed by Gunārs Krollis with plastic molding by Jānis Strupulis. It has a nominal value of 1 lat and features the city’s coat of arms on the obverse and a panorama of Rīga on the reverse.

The 15,000 coins were minted by Rahapaja Oy of Finland. The coin is meant for collectors and will not go into general circulation, according to the Bank of Latvia.

The Rīga coin completes the eight-piece Hanseatic League series. Each coin in the series commemorates one of the Hanseatic League cities in Latvia. Previously released were coins for Ventspils, Straupe, Limbaži, Koknese, Kuldīga, Valmiera and Cēsis. Rīga joined the Hanseatic League, a mercantile organization of many cities around the Baltic Sea, in 1282.

Additionally, just in time for Jāņi, the bank has released a 1-lat coin with an image of a beer stein. The coin was designed by Juris Dimiters (graphical design) and Andris Vārpa (plastic molding).

The beer stein lat was minted by Koninklijke Nederlandse Munt of the Netherlands. A total of 1 million coins will be put into circulation, according to the Bank of Latvia.

The coins are available for purchase at branches of the Bank of Latvia.

New Latvian coins

New 1-lat coins issued by the Bank of Latvia honor Rīga (left) and beer. (Photos courtesy of Bank of Latvia)

Egils Kaljo is an American-born Latvian from the New York area . Kaljo began listening to Latvian music as soon as he was able to put a record on a record player, and still has old Bellacord 78 rpm records lying around somewhere.

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