The Napoleon-gold: the first European currency

The Napoleon-gold: the first European currency

The Paris Mint has just announced the reissue of the 100 Euro gold coin. With 50,000 copies printed, this coin, which is legal tender in France, is the heir to the famous Napoleon-gold created in 1803 by Bonaparte then first consul, and has long served as a woolen stocking for many French people, nostalgic or far-sighted.

The first coins were struck with the effigy of Napoleon in the style of the Roman Emperor. Symbol of the financial stability of France in the XIXth century, its coins allow to follow the political evolution of France until the First World War, according to the changes of regime ...

Following Napoleon's armies across Europe, this coin was a great success and was declined in many countries, Switzerland, Belgium, Spain, Italy ... There were thus coins of 20 Swiss francs, 20 pesetas, 20 lire, 20 Belgian francs, 20 drachmas which circulated throughout Europe. Only Great Britain and the future German Empire did not follow this fashion for political reasons. There was even a project to unify this currency with the American dollar ...

The last 100 euro coin, a rare artistic and heritage coin, is the ultimate testimony to the famous emperor's attempt to unify Europe.


Video: The European Parliament explained