Buy a Floryn, get a floryn

Started by chrisild, December 24, 2010, 12:16:30 AM

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Last month the Dutch Mint and Dirkzwager, a producer of Jenever, launched an interesting campaign: If you buy a bottle (1 liter) of Floryn jenever, you get a free medal in the design of a floryn (florijn) coin from the 17th century. There are seven different pieces, one "from" each of the regions of the Republic of the United Netherlands. Those are base metal pieces, but you also have a chance to win a silver or gold version.

Here is the ad:
These are the pieces (each image can be enlarged)

These links are directly accessible, I think. But if you come across an age check, make sure you are at least 18, and enter a birth date in DD-MM-YYYY format.



I wish the fast marketing boys would sometimes get something right. "Honderden jaren terug, voor het euro- en guldentijdperk, was de Floryn de munteenheid in Nederland." (centuries ago, before the eras of the euro and gulden, the Floryn was the unit of account in the Netherlands.) :P

No, the florijn (not Floryn) was never a unit of account. It was a notoriously unpopular lightweight coin that circulated for a limited period in turbulent times. The rest is marketing drool. At least they matched verb and subject correctly ::)

An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.


These are the ebay "ANCIENT RARE SILVER COIN L@@K" auctions of the future...

I guarantee every week one of those readers digest "Ducats" goes past with a similar description.
always willing to trade modern UK coins for modern coins from elsewhere....



Quote from: Figleaf on December 24, 2010, 12:28:13 AM
I wish the fast marketing boys would sometimes get something right.

Blame the Royal Dutch Mint. ;) The KNM website has an article about this too:

OK, by adding "Uit het nieuws" at the top they can always say "hey, we did not really write that". (Would sound like a lame excuse to me though.) Interesting that, even though the florijn was not popular as a coin, the name was common in abbreviations until a few years ago.

Quoteflorijn (not Floryn)

Actually the KNM changed the "y" to "ij" in the headline. Well, if you have a brand name "Floryn", you will of course want to have a matching coin name for such a campaign ...

And then there is that darn complicated language of yours. :) "It used to be common, in particular when writing in capitals, to write Y instead of IJ. (...) In Dutch names, interchangeability of ij and y is frequent."

"The IJ is not only confusing to foreigners." Ja, dat blykt. >:D

As for the "coins", while I don't think they will turn jenever buyers into coin collectors, the pieces (at least the visible sides) are nicely done. And maybe one or the other will actually try and find out more about their background and history.



So, for those who want to find out more:

The story of the florijn starts in 1601. At that time, a period known as Kipper und Wipperzeit raged in the holy German empire; a silver famine that caused prices to rise rapidly an the silver content of coins to decrease just as fast. Silver coins disappeared from circulation, almost as fast as they were issued.

The provincial mint of Friesland was continually underemployed, as the Frisian economy was slow to develop. It saw a chance to export coins at attractive prices and struck a 28 stuiver piece, a German Goldgulden, commonly called Florin, after a Florentine gold piece. This accounts for the confusion of Florijn and gulden, even though in the Republic, a gulden was 20, not 28 stuivers. The coin seems to have been a success, as it (and halves and quarters) was struck until 1614.

The next stage in the short history of the Florijn started in 1672. In that year, Stuart England, Louis XIV and the bishops of Münster and Cologne (both younger sons of the duke of Bavaria), all catholic, bundled forces to end the existence of the protestant Republic. After initial successes, the allies were defeated one by one, but the war left the finances of the Republic in shambles. Provincial mints wanted to issue lightweight coins, but the sea-trading provinces wanted the export coins to remain of the traditional weight and fineness. The result was political deadlock at the federal level.

In this situation, one provincial mint after another issued lightweight coins, claiming that they were struck for export to Germany, but circulating them locally. The Florijn of 28 stuivers was one of them. The original Frisian coin was 17.3 gram, 0.765 silver. The coins of the other provincial mints are 19.5 gram, 0.673 silver.

In the period 1686-1692, Holland, the most important and sea-faring province, succeeded in breaking the deadlock. It did so by a ban on lightweight coins from other provinces and the threat to ban transport of silver from its seaports to other mints. This was a great concern to Willem III, prince of Orange and commander of the republic's armed forces, who did not want problems when soldiers and sailors were paid. He joined the Holland bandwagon to push through far-reaching mintage reforms.

In 1692, the federation accepted a modern new coinage law. Production of the Florins had been stopped in 1691. To make sure it could not start again, existing Florins were counterstamped with the name of a province or the symbol of the federation, a bundle of arrows. Non-counterstamped coins were not allowed to circulate. In 1694, new coins were introduced and the old coins were progressively retired from circulation.

An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.