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World Coins Featuring Germany

World Coins Featuring Germany

The market for world coins is better than ever, especially when it comes to places where the currency reflects a rich and interesting history. In Germany, this is certainly true, and we are not just talking about modern-day marks. Because of how control of states and regions in central Europe shifted so dramatically over the years, there are many editions of German coins that were only available in very certain states and for limited periods. To understand what makes these coins so valuable and collectible, we must first understand the diverse and colorful history of the central European region.

Coins Have Long Existed in the Region

The earliest records of the term "mark" are from the 11th century, though it is likely that the word was used before that in the region. In its earliest version, a mark would have denoted a weight of approximately eight ounces of silver or gold. While there did exist small coins known as "Usualmarks," often these coins were melted down into lumps of precious metal for the sake of larger transactions. Between the 10th and 12th centuries, other types of coins dominated the economies of the Germanic states.

Coins from this early period were made using what is known as the Carolingian pattern, named after the Frankish dynasty founded by the father of Charlemagne. This pattern of coin used silver to replace the previous gold coins, due to a shortage of gold in the region. These silver deniers were made heavier and wider under the rule of Charlemagne. However, by the year 1138, the denier continued to be recognized only in the western Germanic states. In these states and Westphalia, the denier began to be minted with ecclesiastical symbols, as well as medieval Germanic themes such as castles and churches. In the eastern states, lighter coins known as bracteates began to be minted. After Louis IV ruled Bavaria, a more common value was established, resulting eventually in the silver thaler coins from 1520 and onward. It is actually from this word that our modern word "dollar" evolved. However, even into the 19th century, German marks all held different values between states.

The Mark Is Now a Piece of History

Nowadays you do not need to look for Usualmarks, Carolingian deniers or bracteates in order to have rare and collectible coins. This is because the mark was replaced by the euro in 2002 when Germany joined the European Union. Whether you are looking for Deutschmarks from the reunification period after 1990, Reichsmarks from Nazi Germany or the Rentenmark, a symbol of the vast inflationary period of German currency between World Wars I and II, you will have something that is now valued only as a collector's item. Even after World War II, the mark was split into two main categories: the Ostmarks of East Germany and the Deutschmarks of West Germany.

Discover Some of the Rarest German Coins Today

While you can find Reichsmarks from the Nazi era at $7 a pop, the older coins that were minted uniquely in each state tend to hold more value these days. A thaler coin from the era of Ernst Frederick will fetch a price of approximately $185. The thalers of Saxony from the year 1642 tend to go for over $120. One of the rarest and hardest-to-find coins is the silver thaler from old Saxony minted in 1599, which is regularly bought and sold for over $300.

If you are looking to collect some rare German coins, you need to make sure that you choose a trustworthy dealer to avoid any risk of counterfeit. At Colonial Acres Coins, we check each of our coins for authenticity. When you shop with us, you have our guarantee that you are getting a fair price and a real piece of history.

Germany 1911E Mark UNC
Germany 1936A 5 Pfennig UNC
Germany 1904D Mark VF-EF