Silver Thaler Coin.
Not many people are aware that the Dollar, probably the most popular
currency in the world, actually derived its name from an ancient silver
coin from Europe. This coin is the silver Thaler coin that was used all
over Europe centuries ago, as early as the middle of 15th century.
Europeans of that era used the Thaler silver coin for over four hundred
Thaler is actually a nick for its longer name Joachimsthaler, which was
taken from its city of origin, Joachimsthal in Bohemia. The word “Thal”
means “dell” or “dale” in German. In English, those words mean “valley”.
Hence, “thaler” refers to something or someone that comes from the
valley. Other variants of the word are Talir & Taler. Over the years,
the word Thaler reached other countries and evolved into more variants
such as “Tolar” in Slovenia and “Dollar” in many countries and
territories. Countries that use the word dollar in their official
currency include, Antigua Barbuda, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize,
Brunei, Canada, Dominica, East Timor, Ecuador, El Salvador, Fiji,
Grenada, Guyana, Hong Kong, Jamaica, Kiribati, Liberia, Marshall
Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Namibia, Nauru, New Zealand,
Palau, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the
Grenadines, Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Singapore, Solomon Islands,
Suriname, Republic of China, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, United States
of America and Zimbabwe.
Thaler coin production first boomed in 1486 with the discovery of silver
deposits in Schwaz. Using the newly found source of this precious metal,
Sigismund, then Archduke of Tirol, mass produced the first Thaler coin
called Guldengroschen. The Guldengroschen silver coin was referred to as
the great gulden because its value equals to that of a Goldgulden. Also
called Guldiner, the Guldengroschen coin became popular and was copied
by a lot of states. Designs on these Thaler coins are quite interesting,
which make the coins popular to professional coin collectors. Artists of
the olden times were very creative and expressive with their coin
designs. They created sophisticated designs, bearing images of the
monarchs and rulers in cruelly realistic depiction.
The peak of Thaler coin minting happened during the latter part of the
16th century and early 17th century. This batch of Thaler coins was
referred to as the “multiple Thalers”. The Germans called them “Lösers”.
Majority of these Thalers were struck in Brunswich, where it was first
Today, there are no more currencies bearing the word Thaler but there is
a Thaler coin that survived for a very long time and its circulation
even lasted as late as the 21st century—the Maria Theresa Thaler. This
Thaler coin was used in Ethiopia, in most areas of the Arab Peninsula
during the 20th century and in Middle East and North Africa up to this