Kozinowski, Otto (1939-1994)

Otto Kozinowski was born on 22 January 1939 in Elbing. He spent his youth in Coburg, where he graduated from the Casimirianum high school. After his studies at the TH/TU Munich, he first became an assistant, then a research associate at the chair of mathematics. Afterwards he taught maths for several years at the Nymphenburger Gymnasium. During these years he was already working for the coin dealership Gerhard Hirsch – as a freelancer. At the end of 1979, Otto Kozinowski became head of the numismatic department of the bank H. Aufhäuser in Munich. Thus, he made his hobby – dealing with coins and medals – his main occupation, just like several others did in the 1960s and 1970s. Since 1990 he worked as a sworn expert for medieval and modern coins as well as for medals. Otto Kozinowski died unexpectedly in Munich on 22 March 1994.

A Life Devoted to Numismatics

The details of his activities as a collector and his engagement in numismatic associations – in the Bavarian Numismatic Society to be precise – were already described by Manfred Schulze and Hans Roland Baldus. We will not repeat that here. However, his achievements as numismatic scholar and historian should be acknowledged in more detail. They resulted in many works that were published since the early 1980s. The main starting point for this achievement was – quite unusual for a numismatist, especially for one who did not study “Medieval and Modern History” – an archive and its holdings, namely that of the Bavarian State Archive in Coburg. It contains, for instance, the files of the Saalfeld mint, i.e. the district mint of the Upper Saxon Circle for Thuringia and thus much more than the unwary would expect to find there.

The works by Otto Kozinowski that were not published during his lifetime were included in a two-volume catalogue by Hauck & Aufhäuser published in 2005: Die Münzen des Fürsten- und Herzogtums Coburg von 1577 bis 1918. Die Prägungen der in Coburg regierenden sächsischen Herzöge. Vol. 1: Die Prägungen von 1577 bis 1729; Vol. 2: Die Prägungen von 1729 bis 1918. The work was published by Otto Kozinowski (+), Jürgen Otto and Hubert Ruß.

The title of a source edition by H.-D. Kahl and Otto Kozinowski from 1984 shows exactly what it is all about: “Coburger Dokumente zur Münz- und Geldgeschichte des ernestinischen Thüringen” (Coburg documents on the coinage and monetary history of Ernestine Thuringia). Otto Kozinowski extensively used and expanded the Coburg archive holdings, for Meiningen, Reuß, Schwarzburg, even for Leiningen and above all for the principality of Coburg itself. A complete manuscript of a comprehensive Coburg coin history is part of Otto Kozinowski’s estate. It goes without saying that not only the files but also the numismatic sources were appropriately examined by an author who dealt with numismatic objects on a daily basis and constantly produced impeccable texts for the auction catalogues of the coin shop he headed. It is to be hoped that Otto Kozinowski’s text on Coburg will soon be made available to a broad professional public; it would be more than regrettable if inadequate works would stand in the way of a great one just because they are already printed.

With his works on the monetary history of the Bishopric of Regensburg in modern times, Otto Kozinowski had already crossed the original limits of his field of research. It does not require much imagination to suppose that he would have continued in this direction had a premature death not put an end to his life and work. Finally, we should mention Otto Kozinowski’s activities as a reviewer: he was averse to any bungling, any amateurism, and was not afraid to use clear words whenever he encountered it in a field in which he was able to make a well-founded judgment. It would be very surprising if a numismatist of this calibre had not placed great emphasis on numismatic literature.

The volumes of his beautiful and large library, most of which are also very pleasant to look at, focus on the field Otto Kozinowski worked and did his research on: the Middle Ages and modern times. The following catalogue (with additions from other consignments) gives a good impression of his library, which was carefully compiled over decades: there is almost every work from the standard literature of the 19th and 20th centuries on numismatics of the German-speaking area, to the important new publications of 1993. The older works are also almost exclusively originals, even regarding those of which reprints are available. In addition, there are many older and specialist works dating back as far as to the 16th century. Of course, the territories of the House of Wittelsbach are particularly well represented. Moreover, there are many magazines of the German-speaking area from the 19th and 20th centuries, including a complete series of the “Blätter for Münzfreunde” even with the first, rare volumes, and almost all volumes of the Vienna “Numismatische Zeitschrift”. There are also numerous works of the important older auction catalogues.

Otto Kozinowski’s Bibliography

The following abbreviations will be used: JCL: Jahrbuch der Coburger Landesstiftung. JNG: Jahrbuch für Münz- und Geldgeschichte. MMB: Der Numismatik- und Medaillensammler. Berichte aus allen Gebieten der Geld-, Münzen- und Medaillenkunde. NNB: Numismatisches Nachrichtenblatt.

  1. Treatises and essays
  • Die Medaille 1767 auf Erdmann Rudolf Fischer. In: JCL 26, 1981, pp. 139-144.
  • Ein Beitrag zur Geschichte der Münzstätte Saalfeld zwischen 1690 und 1730. In: JNG 31/32, 1981/82, pp. 149-160 and plate 41-45.
  • Die Saalfelder Silberausmünzungen von 1812 und 1813 für das Herzogtum Sachsen-Coburg- Meiningen. In: JNG 31/32, 1981/82, pp. 161-165 and plate 45.
  • Ein Beitrag zum Münzwesen des Fürstentums Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt zwischen 1764 und 1825. In: MMB year 22, 1982, pp. 1641-1654 (No. 131).
  • Saalfeld als Münzstätte der Würzburger Neujahrsgoldgulden von 1812 und 1813. In: NNB year 31, 1982, p. 162.
  • Eine unbekannte coburgische Medaille aus dem Jahre 1818. In: JCL 28, 1983: pp. 285-286.
  • Die bayerischen Gedenktaler 1865-1871. In: MMB year 23, 1983, pp. 1885-1889.
  • Ein unbekannter bayerischer Kronentaler. In: NNB year 32, 1983, p. 23.
  • Die Saalfelder Ausmünzungen für Sachsen-Meiningen 1765-1816. In: NNB year 32, 1983, pp. 145-147. Ein Beitrag zum Münzwesen der Reuß’schen Staaten 1763-1828. In: Münz Zentrum Köln, Auction 51, 28-30 March 1984, catalogue pp. 104-113.
  • Ein Beitrag zur Tätigkeit des Gothaer Medailleurs Ferdinand Helfricht in den Jahren 1828-1838, anläßlich seines 175. In: MMB year 24, 1984, pp. 2031-2042 (No. 142).
  • Anmerkungen zur Kronentalerprägung Sachsen-Coburgs in den Jahren 1825 und 1827. In: NNB year 34, 1985, pp. 32-38.
  • Eine unbekannte Marke des 16. Jhs. In: NNB year 36, 1987, p. 65.
  • Die Kronentalerprägung Sachsen-Coburgs. Ein Nachtrag. In: NNB year 36, 1987, pp. 227-228.
  • Saalfeld als Münzstätte der Leininger Münzen von 1804 und 1805. Zugleich ein Beitrag zum Münzwesen des Fürstentums Sachsen-Coburg zu Beginn des 19. In: JNG 37/38, 1987/1988, pp. 101- 127 and plates 21-22.
  • Das Staatspapiergeld des Herzogtums Sachsen-Coburg. In: JCL 39, 1989, pp. 37-56.
  • Das Münzwesen der Regensburger Bischöfe in der Neuzeit (1523-1803). In: Das Bistum Regensburg im Spiegel von Münzen und Medaillen. Munich, Zürich (Schnell & Steiner) 1989, pp. 21-33.
  • Unpublished: Hubert Emmerig und Otto Kozinowski, Die Münzen und Medaillen der Regensburger Bischöfe und des Domkapitels seit dem 16. Jahrhundert (working title).
  1. Primary source editions
  • Coburger Dokumente zur Münz- und Geldgeschichte des ernestinischen Thüringen ed. by Hans-Dietrich Kahl and Otto Kozinowski. In: JCL 29, 1984, pp. 1-1743.
  1. Book reviews
  • JNG 26, 1976, p. 194 (F. Spruth, Die Bergbauprägungen der Territorien an Eder, Lahn und Sieg. Bochum 1974).
  • JNG 26, 1976, pp. 196-197 (R. Haas, Die Prägungen der Mannheimer Münzstätten. Mannheim 1974). JNG 27, 1977, p. 141 (H. Jungwirth, Corpus Nummorum Austriacorum Vol. 5 Vienna 1975).
  • JNG 31/32, 1981/1982, pp. 191-194 (W. Grasser, Bayerische Geschichtstaler. Rosenheim 1982).

Obituaries for Otto Kozinowski

  • Hans Roland Baldus in NNB year 43, 1994, p. 125.
  • Ibid in JNG 42/43, 1992/93 (1994), pp. 399-400.
  • M(anfred) Sch(ulze) in money trend year 26, 1994, No. 6, p. 45.


This article was first published in an auction catalogue by Tietjen+Co.