Poland 1823-IB 25 zlotych

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Heritage sale 3040, lot 30384
photo courtesy Heritage Auction Galleries
This specimen was lot 30384 in Heritage sale 3040 (Chicago, April 2015), where it sold for $28,200. The catalog description[1] noted,

"Alexander I of Russia gold 25 Zlotych 1823-IB AU58 NGC, Warsaw mint, An outstanding selection featuring the head of Alexander I of Russia and the crowned, double-headed imperial eagle with a crowned, mantled shield on breast. The surfaces delight with devices that present a light, pleasing frost and fields that hold an equal amount of reflectivity as well as faint wisps. Wear is extremely minimal, affecting only the highest points, and the overall design elements are so bold that they appear to have been struck in high relief.

Of the six dates in the series, there appears to be a total of seventeen coins that are currently certified. However, as far as the date is concerned, there is only one other coin from 1823 that is graded, and it bears the same designation as the current offering, AU58. It further follows then, that the 1823--which asserts the smallest mintage of just 479 pieces--is the scarcest date in an altogether difficult series to acquire, making this a truly wonderful opportunity for Russian and Polish enthusiasts alike.

Notable for his many titles, Alexander was first and foremost Emperor of Russia (1801-1825), but also the first Russian Grand Duke of Finland (1809-1825) and the first Russian King of Poland (1815-1825). Having ruled Russia during the famed Napoleonic Wars, he was often in a position to side with or against Napoleon during several campaigns. Within a matter of years he fought opposite Napoleon in the War of the Third Coalition but then formed an alliance with Napoleon and joined the Continental Blockade. In the end the coalition collapsed and with Napoleon's failed attempt to invade Russia in 1812, Russia subsequently gained control over Poland and Finland."

This scarce type is listed for 1818-26. A variety exists for 1818 struck without collar, resulting in a larger diameter. Coinage for Poland ceased in 1841 and regular Russian issues introduced.

Recorded mintage: 479.

Specification: 4.89 g, .917 fine gold, .144 troy oz ASW.

Catalog reference: KM-C102A, Fr-106, Bitkin-816 (R2).


  • Friedberg, Arthur L. and Ira S. Friedberg, Gold Coins of the World, From Ancient Times to the Present, 7th ed., Clifton, NJ: Coin and Currency Institute, 2003.
  • Cuhaj, George S., and Thomas Michael, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900, 7th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2012.
  • [1]Bierrenbach, Cristiano, Warren Tucker and David Michaels, Heritage Signature Auction 3040, featuring the Santa Maria, the Alan Dean and the Valley View Life Collections, Dallas, TX: Heritage Auction Galleries, 2015.

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