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Iron – Worth its Weight in Gold

New 10 Euro Silver Coin "Erzberg in Styria"

April 7, 2010 – On 14th April, 2010, the Austrian Mint is issuing the third silver €10 coin in the series “Tales and Legends in Austria”.  The new coin recounts the folktale surrounding the discovery of the important iron ore mountain in Styria called the “Erzberg”.

Lake Leopoldstein

The story goes that in former times the local inhabitants detected a form of water sprite – a sort of merman – living in an underwater grotto in Lake Leopoldstein. They believed the merman must possess great treasures and therefore they determined to capture him. Meat and wine were placed at the waterside to entice him. As expected, the merman came out of his grotto, ate, drank and fell fast asleep. Two of the villagers crept up to the sleeping merman and quickly ravelled him up in a tar-covered coat to prevent his slipping from their grasp. They carried him back to the village. To the joy of his captors, the merman promised them great riches in exchange for his freedom. He offered: “Gold will last but a short time, silver not long either, but iron will last you forever.” They immediately cried: “We want the iron!” The merman then pointed to the mountain now called Erzberg: “This mountain will supply you with iron forever more.” In truth the Erzberg provided an almost inexhaustible supply of iron and has proven to be one of Styria’s greatest blessings.

Date of issue: 14th April, 2010; Design: Th. Pesendorfer / H. Andexlinger; Face Value: 10 Euro; Diameter: 32 mm; Fine weight: 16 g Ag; Fineness: 925 sterling silver; Mintage: proof ? max. 40.000 / special uncirculated ? max. 30.000 / circulation pieces ? max. 130.000

Date of issue: 14th April, 2010; Design: Th. Pesendorfer / H. Andexlinger; Face Value: 10 Euro; Diameter: 32 mm; Fine weight: 16 g Ag; Fineness: 925 sterling silver; Mintage: proof ? max. 40.000 / special uncirculated ? max. 30.000 / circulation pieces ? max. 130.000

The new silver commemorative coin depicts the scene from the legend where the two villagers creep up on the sleeping merman armed with the tar-covered coat. The other side shows a scene of iron ore mining in the Middle Ages. A miner pushes a carload of ore out of the mineshaft, while another breaks up the ore with a pick and hammer.  In the background can be seen the distinctive shape of the iron mountain, Erzberg.
Struck in sterling silver (925 fine), the new coin has a maximum mintage of 40,000 pieces in proof quality, 30,000 in special uncirculated and 130,000 pieces that are issued at face value through the banks. The proof version is issued with a numbered certificate of authenticity in an attractive box. The special uncirculated piece is vacuum packed in a colourful and informative blister pack. An album for the series of six coins is also available for purchase.
The theme of “Tales and Legends” is a clear departure from the more traditional themes on coins, but it has proved to be very popular with collectors and buyers of all ages. The series will continue in October with a coin for the Emperor Charlemagne and the Untersberg near Salzburg.

Die Münze Österreich hat in ihrer Reihe „Sagen und Legenden in Österreich“ eine neue 10-Euro-Silbermünze herausgegeben, die dem Erzberg in der Steiermark gewidmet ist. Die Reihe „Sagen und Legenden in Österreich“ versteht sich als Teil einer größeren Reihe zu „Österreich und seinem Volk“. Unter diesem Titel laufen verschiedene, höchst interessante 10-Euro-Silbermünzen-Serien, die Österreichs Kultur und Geschichte zum Inhalt haben. Der Themenbogen spannt sich von Stiften und Klöstern über Schlösser und Burgen bis zu Kunsthandwerk und Regionen & Brauchtum. Die Serie „Sagen und Legenden“ fügt einen weiteren, fantasievollen Aspekt hinzu. Sie wird – nach den Münzen „Der Basilisk“ und „Richard Löwenherz“ – nun mit „Die Entdeckung des Erzberges“ weitergeführt.

Leonsteiner See

The story goes that in former times the local inhabitants detected a form of water sprite – a sort of merman – living in an underwater grotto in Lake Leopoldstein. They believed the merman must possess great treasures and therefore they determined to capture him. Meat and wine were placed at the waterside to entice him. As expected, the merman came out of his grotto, ate, drank and fell fast asleep. Two of the villagers crept up to the sleeping merman and quickly ravelled him up in a tar-covered coat to prevent his slipping from their grasp. They carried him back to the village. To the joy of his captors, the merman promised them great riches in exchange for his freedom. He offered: “Gold will last but a short time, silver not long either, but iron will last you forever.” They immediately cried: “We want the iron!” The merman then pointed to the mountain now called Erzberg: “This mountain will supply you with iron forever more.” In truth the Erzberg provided an almost inexhaustible supply of iron and has proven to be one of Styria’s greatest blessings.

The story goes that in former times the local inhabitants detected a form of water sprite – a sort of merman – living in an underwater grotto in Lake Leopoldstein. They believed the merman must possess great treasures and therefore they determined to capture him. Meat and wine were placed at the waterside to entice him. As expected, the merman came out of his grotto, ate, drank and fell fast asleep. Two of the villagers crept up to the sleeping merman and quickly ravelled him up in a tar-covered coat to prevent his slipping from their grasp. They carried him back to the village. To the joy of his captors, the merman promised them great riches in exchange for his freedom. He offered: “Gold will last but a short time, silver not long either, but iron will last you forever.” They immediately cried: “We want the iron!” The merman then pointed to the mountain now called Erzberg: “This mountain will supply you with iron forever more.” In truth the Erzberg provided an almost inexhaustible supply of iron and has proven to be one of Styria’s greatest blessings.

Date of issue: 14th April, 2010; Design: Th. Pesendorfer / H. Andexlinger; Face Value: 10 Euro; Diameter: 32 mm; Fine weight: 16 g Ag; Fineness: 925 sterling silver; Mintage: proof ? max. 40.000 / special uncirculated ? max. 30.000 / circulation pieces ? max. 130.000

Date of issue: 14th April, 2010; Design: Th. Pesendorfer / H. Andexlinger; Face Value: 10 Euro; Diameter: 32 mm; Fine weight: 16 g Ag; Fineness: 925 sterling silver; Mintage: proof ? max. 40.000 / special uncirculated ? max. 30.000 / circulation pieces ? max. 130.000

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