Author Topic: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania  (Read 5807 times)

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Offline <k>

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Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« on: January 10, 2013, 10:01:05 PM »
After the First World War and the collapse of the Russian and Austro-Hungarian empires, Lithuania was able to re-establish itself as an independent state. However, in 1920 Poland annexed the Vilnius region, Lithuania's traditional capital. The map below shows how Lithuania looked in 1923. Vilna is the Polish name for Vilnius. To the south-west of Lithuania is East Prussia, which was part of Germany at the time.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2017, 12:02:59 AM by <k> »
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Offline <k>

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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2013, 10:07:11 PM »
Under the terms of the Nazi-Soviet Pact, Vilna, along with the rest of eastern Poland, was occupied by Soviet forces in late September 1939. In October 1939 the Soviet Union transferred the Vilna region to Lithuania. Soviet forces occupied Lithuania in June 1940 and in August 1940 incorporated Vilna, along with the rest of Lithuania, into the Soviet Union. On June 22, 1941, Germany attacked Soviet forces in eastern Europe. The German army occupied Vilna on June 24, 1941. After the retreat of the German armed forces, the Soviets re-established the annexation of Lithuania in 1944.





This map shows the territorial gains made by the Soviet Union during and directly after the Second World War. After the war, Lithuania was still now part of the Soviet Union, but it retained the territory it had gained from Poland.





Post-war borders of the Soviet Union.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2013, 12:06:28 AM by <k> »
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Offline <k>

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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2013, 10:11:35 PM »
From Wikipedia:

The advent of perestroika and glasnost in the USSR in the late 1980s allowed the establishment of Sąjūdis, an anti-communist independence movement. After a landslide victory in elections to the Supreme Soviet, members of Sąjūdis proclaimed Lithuania's independence on 11 March 1990, becoming the first Soviet republic to do so. The Soviet Union attempted to suppress the secession by imposing an economic blockade. Soviet troops attacked the Vilnius TV Tower, killing 14 Lithuanian civilians and wounding 600 others on the night of 13 January 1991.

On 4 February 1991, Iceland became the first country to recognise Lithuanian independence, but on 31 July 1991 Soviet paramilitaries killed seven Lithuanian border guards on the Belarusian border, in what became known as the Medininkai Massacre. After the Soviet August Coup of 1991, independent Lithuania received wide official recognition and joined the United Nations on 17 September 1991. The last Soviet troops left Lithuania on 31 August 1993. Lithuania, seeking closer ties with the West, applied for NATO membership in 1994. After a transition from a planned economy to a free market one, Lithuania became a full member of NATO and the European Union in the spring of 2004 and a member of the Schengen Agreement on 21 December 2007.



Map of Lithuania today. Part of East Prussia was annexed by the Soviet Union after the war and renamed Kaliningrad. It is now a Russian exclave.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2017, 11:46:26 PM by <k> »
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Offline <k>

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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2013, 10:16:02 PM »
Lithuania had issued coins during its previous period of independence. See: Lithuanian coins of the 1920s.

From Wikipedia:

The litas, which is divided into 100 centų, was reintroduced on June 25 1993, following a period of currency exchange from the ruble to the litas, with the temporary talonas (coupon) currency that was then in place. From 1994 to 2002, the litas was pegged to the U.S. dollar at the rate of 4 to 1. Currently the litas is pegged to the euro at the rate of 3.4528 to 1.
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Offline <k>

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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2013, 10:19:00 PM »


Here you see a Lithuanian coin of the 1920s.  The obverse portrays Vytis, the Chaser, an armour-clad knight on horseback from the Lithuanian coat of arms. Since independence, all Lithuanian circulation coins have depicted an amended version of Vytis on their obverse.
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Offline <k>

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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #5 on: January 10, 2013, 10:22:15 PM »
Though the first new coins were dated 1991, they were not issued until 1993. The reverse of the new 1 centas coin shows a Gedimian column, a part of the coat of arms, at the centre of a decorative ornament.





Gedimian column.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2013, 12:09:56 PM by <k> »
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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2013, 10:23:32 PM »


The reverse of the 2 centai coin shows a traditional sun symbol.
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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2013, 10:24:58 PM »
The reverse of the 5 centai coin shows a traditional wind-chime, which includes figures of two angels blowing trumpets.
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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2013, 10:26:50 PM »
Compared to the lower denominations, the 10 centu coin has a rather plain reverse.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2013, 12:07:51 PM by <k> »
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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2013, 10:27:34 PM »
The 20 and 50 centu coins have a similarly plain reverse.
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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #10 on: January 10, 2013, 10:30:30 PM »
The reverse of the 1 litas coin shows the denomination, flanked by some horizontal lines.
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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #11 on: January 10, 2013, 10:32:12 PM »
The reverse of the 2 litai coin has a very similar design.
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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #12 on: January 10, 2013, 11:20:57 PM »
The reverse design of the 5 litai is again very similar to the preceding two.

The 1, 2 and 5 litai coins were in copper-nickel, while the 1, 2, and 5 centai were made of aluminium. The 10, 20 and 50 centu coins were made of bronze. Note: the images in this topic are not to scale.
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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #13 on: January 10, 2013, 11:27:41 PM »
A new design series was issued in the years 1997 and 1998. The 1, 2 and 5 centai coins, however, were not redesigned or reissued, as they had become worthless in the meantime.

In 1997, only the 10, 20 and 50 centu coins were redesigned. Instead of being minted in bronze, they were now made of nickel-brass, and each coin was slightly larger than before. The new 10 centu coin was 17mmm in diameter, compared to 16mm, while the 20 and 50 centu coins were 20.5mm and 23mm in diameter respectively, as opposed to 17.5mm and 21mm for their old counterparts.

Rather than having plain reverse designs as before, each reverse was given a different geometric pattern. In addition, the figure of Vytis on the obverse was significantly amended.

Here is the 20 centu coin of 1997.
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Re: Post-communist coinage of Lithuania
« Reply #14 on: January 10, 2013, 11:28:22 PM »
The reverse of the 10 centu coin of 1997.
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