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102602 | GERMANY. Nürnberg. Silver Kerzendreier (3 Pfennig Baptismal Token).

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    102602  |  GERMANY. Nürnberg. Silver Großer Kerzendreier (3 Pfennig Baptismal Token). Issued circa 1700 (27mm, 3.54 g, 12h). By G. F. Nürnberger.


    MAGNVS IN PARVO (mighty yet humble), facing radiant personification of the sun // LVX IN TENEBRIS (light in darkness), radiant infant Jesus Christ lying in manger; partial ruins in background to left; above, radiant Star of Bethlehem showing downward through the clouds.


    Fenzlein 597; Erlanger Coll. 963. Choice Mint State. Lightly toned, with great brilliance in the fields.


    Georg Friedrich Nürnberger was a prolific late 17th/early 18th century coiner and medalist in the city which shared his name, with baptismal-related coins, medals, and tokens serving an important role in his mint's offerings. For more wealthy families, gold ducat klippes, as well as their fractions, stood as keepsakes intended for the parents and godparents of a newly-baptised child. For those of more modest means, tokens such as this "Kerzendreier," literally "three candlesticks," possibly served a similar role. It is still not fully known if these silver issues were produced by Nürnberger's roller dies as direct gifts, similar to the gold medallic ducats, or as a pseudo-ecclesiastic medium of exchange, whereby a token could be used to purchase a candle from the church (candles being a common gift given to the child's parents and godparents). Given that the candles at the time cost 1 kreuzer (or 3 pfennig), the name of "three candlesticks" may have become the common slang, with the three indicating the 3 pfennig cost for the candlestick thus purchased.


    Upload: 1 December 2023.

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