Numismatic Puzzle: Vreneli, Switzerland (1925)

Today’s puzzle is a 100 CHF Swiss gold coin, a so-called Vreneli, of 1925.

Numismatic Puzzle: Groat of Maria I of England

Today’s puzzle is a groat (c.1553-1558) of Maria I of England, “Bloody Mary”.

Numismatic Puzzle: Manilla

A manilla looks like a bangle, but its opening is too wide to be used as jewellery. In fact, Manillas were used for centuries as a currency by Europeans to trade with West African nations.

Numismatic Puzzle: Melanesian Boar’s Tusk

This is a boar’s tusk. On a group of islands east of Australia, wealth is traditionally quantified using pigs as a unit of measurement. Circular boar’s tusks are still used as bride price or atonement money – and they even adorn the national flag of Vanuatu.

Numismatic Puzzle: Matapan

Matapan is the Arabic term for the enthroned Christ on the reverse of a heavy Venetian silver coin introduced around 1200. Today, however, you will put together the obverses’ motif: St Mark who presents the banner to the head of state.

Numismatic Puzzle: Anastasius

This time we have a so-called half siliqua of Theodoric the Great, King of the Ostrogoths. He ruled over Italy from AD 493 to 526, with the favour of the powerful Eastern Roman Emperor Anastasius I. That’s why we see the portrait of Anastasius on the obverse.

Numismatic Puzzle: Kushan the Sasanidian Way

This gold coin comes from the Empire of Kushan in Northern India. But it resembles Sasanian coins because – when it was struck in the middle of the 4th c. AD – the Sasanians had conquered the Kushan empire at that time.

Numismatic Puzzle: Chandragupta II

Northern India experienced a period of prosperity around 400 under the Gupta dynasty. King Chandragupta II not only promoted arts and culture, he was also called the “world conqueror”. With bow and arrow, Chandragupta shows his martial side on this golden dinar.

Numismatic Puzzle: Vespasianus

Vespasianus had to balance the budget – and created a tax for using public urinals. Smelling at the coins, the pragmatist stated: “It does not stink!“ Neither does this denarius. But you can look directly into the face of the cunning politician that Vespasianus was!

Numismatic Puzzle: Roman Denarius

Today you will deal with a Roman denarius and put the head of Roma together. The personification of the Roman people on this 141 BC silver coin has a proud glare, but the special feature of this specimen is something completely different.