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MA-Shops: The History of Coin Collecting

By Joël van DamOwner, Joëlnumismatics, for MA-Shops.com ……

An Old Hobby

In this blog, I will discuss the history of coin collection. It is an old hobby with an impressive history and I think this creates an extra dimension for the appreciation of coin collecting in general. And, it feels great to know that what you are doing has a long history and has been pursued in the past by famous and important people. Yet today, coin collecting is a special hobby that can be enjoyed by everyone!

Some suggest that collecting coins for their artistic value is as old as coins themselves. It is my opinion that there is no serious evidence that before the Renaissance coin collecting was done actively. Because of the curiosity about ancient history during the Renaissance, coin collecting became a hobby for the elite and, yes, even kings. Because of the rise of this hobby, the supply of old coins increased and famous engravers were employed to make medals and imitations of ancient coins.

MA-Shops - Aureus AD 14-37 Lyon, Tiberius

Aureus AD 14-37 Lyon, Tiberius

5,400.00 US$

  • Weight: 7.78 g
  • Diameter: 19.00 mm
  • Lugdunum, AU(55-58)
  • Catalog: RIC:29

Laureate head right, Livia as Pax, seated right on throne with ornamented legs, holding reversed spear, TI CAESAR DIVI AVG F AVGVSTVS, PONTIF MAXIM

The 17th and 18th Century

It was in the 17th and 18th century that numismatics became a field of research. It was in this period that the first real studies and catalogues were published. This development resulted in public collections and more in more collectors. But collecting was still for the elite. People who were not rich enough needed to spend their money instead of collecting it.

It was at the end of the 18th and into the 19th century that the wealth of the middle class increased enough that it became possible for them to collect coins. And so they did. The first commercial literature about coins was printed in the 1800s. The interest in the type of coins changed from almost exclusively ancient coins to nearly every type of coin and medal from every place and era. This trend continued in the 20th century.

Denarius 82-83 AD Domitia as Augusta

7,875.00 US$

  • Catalog: RIC 153; BMC 63
  • Material: Silver
  • Weight: 3.62 g

Obv: DOMITI? ?UGUST? IMP DOMIT; draped bust of Domitia to the right, hair in long plait. Rev: DIVUS C?ES?R IMP DOMITI?NI F; child (Domitian’s son?) sitting to the left on globe, arms spread, surrounded by seven stars.

Extremely rare.

US 1883 1c – 66 RB (Eagle Eye Photo Seal)

1,250.00 US$

  • Catalog: 2337
  • Weight: 3.11 g
  • Diameter: 19.00 mm
  • Mintage: 6,609

Beautiful fluorescent toning with gorgeous rainbow colors.

Coin Clubs and Coin Collection

The first coin clubs and coin shows emerged. More and more people (especially in the West) joined the hobby and as a result, professional coin dealers became an established fact. Since the 1960s, coin collecting has become possible for a large part of the population. It became a way of discovering the world and history. You must remember that in those days there was no internet. So it was also a nice pastime.

The trend continued until the appearance of the internet. This resulted in an explosion of possibilities and with this the increase in collectors, dealers, and scholars. Nowadays it is possible to buy a coin on the other side of the world and have it in your hands a few days later.

8 Reales 1836 Argentina – Rare

4,425.00 US$

  • Catalog: KM# 20
  • Material: Silver
  • Weight: 27.06 g

MA-Shops.com is a great example were al the developments come together. It is possible to buy from great dealers all over the world and to take advantage of their wonderful stock. In this way, you will be able to create a great collection and become more knowledgeable about numismatic topics.

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About MA-Shops

MA-Shops small sealMA-Shops is an internet marketplace headquartered in Europe. MA-Shops has assembled a network of reputable coin dealers – both large and small – onto one, easy-to-use platform to sell coins, paper currency, medals, military orders and stamps directly to the collector. Founded by German engineer Joachim Schwiening in 2005, MA- Shops is now the leading ”online collector mall” worldwide. Browsing through the site quickly reveals how wide and variegated the selection from MA-Shops and its associated dealers really is. In recent months, Schwiening and MA-Shops have made a concerted push into the American market.

  • OPEN YOUR MA-SHOP and sell to 300,000 collectors
  • Items listed on marketplaces and search engines, Google & Co.
  • Marketing Tools, dedicated MA-Shops Support
  • Email Campaigns
  • Multi-Language: English, French, German, Dutch, Spanish, Italian, Russian, Chinese

Contact us here


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