Mikolaj Radziwill the Black on Lithuania’s first silver collectable euro coin

Mikolaj Radziwill the Black coin. Photo courtesy of the Bank of Lithuania

Mikolaj Radziwill the Black, Duke of Olyka and Nesvizh, Marszalek of the Grand Duchy, Voivode of Vilnius and Chancellor of the Grand Duchy, born on 4 February 1515, was a political figure of extraordinary talent and exceptional brightness in the 16th century.

The reverse of the coin depicts a portrait of Mikolaj Radziwill the Black; next to it is the coat-of-arms of the Radziwill family and, in a semicircle, the words: Mikolaj Radziwill the Black, 500.

In the centre of the obverse of the coin – a stylised Vytis in a shield; the coin is decorated with a braid of decorative elements in a circle.

The 20-euro coin is minted from 925 fineness silver.

Each country in the eurozone has the right to mint collector euro coins, selecting the denomination, metal and other features at its discretion. These coins must significantly differ from circulation coins in at least two of the following three features: colour, diameter or weight. Such coins are legal tender only in the country that issues them, unlike circulation and commemorative coins, which are legal tender throughout the euro area.

The first collector euro coin was issued by the Bank of Lithuania on 29 January 2015. It was a 50-euro gold coin dedicated to coinage in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania.

From 1993 to 2014, the Bank of Lithuanian issued 88 collector (commemorative) coins and 18 collector (commemorative) circulation coins.

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