Russian Peter The Great Wire Money.ca 1700,Silver coin

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  • Item Category: Coins & Currency
  • Source: eBay
  • Sold Date: May 21,2009
  • Channel: Online Auction

For hundreds of years much of Russian commerce was based on these tiny silver coins called wire money. The coins were struck by taking a piece of silver wire, cutting it to the proper weight, then smashing it between a pair of dies by a strong-armed Russian. As might be expected, the coins are quite crude and are usually struck partly off-center.

The coin shows a horseman on one side and legends on the other. Peter the Great, the younger son of Alexis ruled Russia from 1689 to 1725. He was a great reformer, modernizing Russia and expanding its Navy, frontiers and prestige. One of his reforms was to abolish the wire coinage in favor of machine struck coins that were used in much of Europe. Thus he brought an end to this long series of crude silver coins.

MEDIEVAL RUSSIA - KOPEK

OBVERSE: HORSEMAN

REVERSE: RUSSIAN LEGEND

METAL: SILVER

SIZE: ‘RANGE’ 8.5MM-12MM

Lot B

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PYOTR ALEKSEYEVICH, PETER THE GREAT (1672-1725) czar of Russia , reigned jointly with his half-brother Ivan V (1682-96) and alone tafter (1696-1725) and who in 1721 was proclaimed emperor (imperator). He was one of his country's greatest statesmen, organizers, and reformers.

As a child, young Peter’s 25-year-old half sister Sophia was made regent after one of the frequent internal revolts. Clever and influential, Sophia took control of the government. Excluded from public affairs, Peter lived with his mother in the village of Preobrazhenskoye , near Moscow . He was raised in an atmosp open to progressive influences from the West, but often feared for his safety. One result of Sophia's overt exclusion of Peter from the government was that he did not receive the usual education of a Russian Czar; he grew up in a free atmosp instead of being confined to a palace. A subsequent coup resulted in the deposition of Sophia and the accession of Peter.

At the beginning of Peter's reign, Russia was territorially a huge power, but with no access to the Black Sea , the Caspian, or to the Baltic. To win such an outlet became the main goal of Peter's foreign policy. A long series of treaties and armed conflicts resulted in a succession of territorial expansions.

He did not completely bridge the gulf between Russia and the Western countries, but he achieved considerable progress in development of the national economy, trade, education, science, culture, and foreign policy. Russia became a great power, and was henceforth consulted on all large European problems.

Peter was of enormous height, more than six and one-half feet (two meters) tall; handsome and of unusual physical strength. Restless, energetic, and impulsive, he did not like splendid clothes that hindered his movements; often he appeared in worn-out shoes, an old hat, and more often in military or naval uniform. He was a just man who did not tolerate dishonesty, yet was terrible in his anger and could be cruel when he encountered opposition.

In the autumn of 1724, seeing some soldiers in danger of drowning from a ship aground on a sandbank in the Gulf of Finland, he characteristically plunged himself into the icy water to help them. Catching a chill, he became seriously ill in the winter but even so continued to work; indeed, it was at this time that he drew up the instructions for the expedition of Vitus Bering to Kamchatka .

When Peter died early in the following year, he left an empire that stretched from Arkhangelsk (Archangel) on the White Sea to Mazanderan on the Caspian and from the Baltic Sea to the Pacific Ocean.

This coin is a genuine antiquity. It is a silver 1 Kopek coin minted during the reign of Czar Peter the Great of Russia in the period 1672-1725. It is often referred to as “wire money” because of the method of manufacture. The coins were crudely struck in a curious method on a continuous length of silver wire between coin dies, then cut apart into individual coins. The coins were inscribed on one side with the Czar’s name and his title...

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