For centuries, Riga Castle’s silhouette on the bank of the Daugava River has stood as a symbol of Latvian strength and pride. While the castle predates the accepted date of 1515 by centuries, the current edifice was constructed anew after the Livonian defeat at Bukultu in 1491. The oldest-known images of the castle date as far back as the late 16th century. A 1612 work by Nikolaus Mollino renders the castle in great detail, including outbuildings, the castle gate, and its defensive fortifications.
Over the years, the castle has housed various Latvian leaders, museums, and other organizations. In 1922, it became the residence of the Latvian president. The cost of maintaining the facility under Soviet occupation, caused the government to seek other accommodations. After the fall of the Soviet Union, the Castle once again served as a home for Latvia’s presidents and their families.
On Wednesday, 17 June, the Bank of Latvia (Latvijas Banka) issued the five-euro silver “500 Years of the Riga Castle” collector coin. Each coin was struck in Switzerland by FAUDI & Huguenot SA and is legal tender in the Republic of Latvia. Maximum mintage for the issue was set at 7,000 pieces.
Ivars Drulle’s design features the stone mouldings on the gateway of the Riga Convent showing the Madonna (right) and Wolter von Plettenberg (left), the Master of the Livonian Order. On the left border, centered and running vertically, is the denomination 5 EURO. On the right border, centered and running vertically, is the legend LATVIA. Centered in the bottom border is the date, 2015.
The reverse of the coin bears the design of Ilze Lībiete, which depicts a bird’s-eye view of Riga Castle. Centered in the top border is the inscription RīGAS PILS (Riga Castle). Centered in the bottom border is the date: 1515.
|Year Of Issue:||2015|
|Alloy:||.925 Silver; .999 Copper|
|OBV Designer||Ivars Drulle|
|REV Designer||Ilze Lībiete|
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5 Euro Silver Coins Currently Available on eBay