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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Sale: CNG 73, Lot: 1150. Estimate $1000. 
Closing Date: Wednesday, 13 September 2006. 
Sold For $900. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

GERMANY, Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel. August der Jüngere (the Younger). 1635-1666. AR Reisetaler (28.99 g, 9h). Struck circa 1650. Bare-headed and draped facing bust to right, breaking upper legend / Two ships; man (August?) standing at lower right. Davenport 6357; KM 446. Near EF, toned.

The “Reisetaler” (travel taler) was probably minted by August the Younger around 1650. These coins depict a naval scene and are sometimes called “Schiffstaler” (ship talers). The Duke was very well traveled, and he spent several years visiting Italy, France, and England early in his life. Perhaps he intended these coins to commemorate those voyages. An alternative explanation is that these coins were minted just after August’s death. In that case, the man on the shore could be the Duke himself, preparing to depart on his symbolic “last voyage” from the world of the living.