The Dutch Mint, Utrecht
LAWS AND DECREES ABOUT DUTCH COINS IN THE TIME OF LOUIS BONAPARTE
On 17 September 1806, during the reign of Louis Napoleon Bonaparte, King Louis (Dutch name: Lodewijk) I of Holland, it was decided by royal decree No. 18 to mint and distribute Dutch coins at the national level. The original intention was for the National Mint to be based in Amsterdam, but a lack of funds meant that this never happened. The mints across the Batavian Republic were closed down on 1 January 1807 and all activities were transferred to Utrecht, which was the country’s best-equipped facility to become the National Mint at that time. Mint Master Gideon Langerak du Marchie Sarvaas retained his role. The new types of coins included the symbol of a bee as his mint master mark.
The old types of coins from the Batavian Republic were continued for a while, but were no longer allowed to be minted after 1808. A single, uniform currency law was introduced for the entire kingdom of the Netherlands with a double standard: standard gold coins of 20 and ten guilders and standard silver coins of 50 stuivers [L1] (rijksdaalder, one guilder and half a guilder with proportionate weights and contents as the existing guilders).
Soon after that, proofs were made based on the decimal system featuring a portrait of the king. New coin presses arrived from France as well as new equipment for creating lettered edges. This new edging equipment was ordered at the request of De Salneuve, who was bestowed the title of ‘Méchanicien de S.M. le Roi de Hollande’ as compensation for losing one of his fingers during his work, and as a gesture of appreciation. The Minister of Finance, I.J. Alexander Gogel, was very involved with the new mint.
On 1 January 1807, the mints of the Batavian Republic were abolished and the mint in Utrecht was maintained as the central mint, as it was the most equipped mint in the Netherlands at the time. The mint master Gideon Langerak du Marchie Sarvaas remained in office. He placed a bee as the mint master's mark on the new types of coins. Many new designs were produced during that period, but almost just as many were rejected. Official copper or bronze coins were not minted in the end.
On 17 September 1806 by royal decree, the original coins from the United Provinces and the Batavian Republic were set at the following rates :
Halve Gouden Rijder
Zeeuwse Zilveren Dukaat
Snaphaan, roos-, arend-, scheepjesschelling en geklopte ruiter-
Ongeklopte ruiter- en hoedjesschellingen (ook wel zest half genoemd)
© Laurens Schulman B.V. 2023