First commemorative coin dedicated to Lithuanian ethnographic regions features a Samogitian bear
Today, the Bank of Lithuania issued into circulation the €2 commemorative coin dedicated to Samogitia. This is the first coin in a new series Lithuanian Ethnographic Regions.
‘The new coin series start with the coin dedicated to Samogitia, since Samogitian knights were the first to be mentioned in written sources exactly 800 years ago. From today, the Samogitian bear, the symbol of the region, could be in every Samogitian’s wallet. We plan to issue commemorative coins dedicated to other ethnographic regions as well – the five coins in the series will showcase the uniqueness and diversity of Lithuanian regions,’ said Asta Kuniyoshi, Deputy Chair of the Board of the Bank of Lithuania.
Designed by Rolandas Rimkūnas, the national side of the coin depicts the historic coat of arms of Samogitia with a bear standing on its hind legs, with a chain collar on the neck. The bear is situated against a shield topped with a crown held by an armoured soldier (the symbol of courage, sacrifice and patriotism) and a goddess with an anchor (the symbol of hope).
The common side of the coin is the same as on circulation coins.
By 2023, the Bank of Lithuania will issue 5 coins in the series Lithuanian Ethnographic Regions: Samogitia (Žemaitija), Aukštaitija, Dzūkija, Suvalkija and Lithuania Minor (Mažoji Lietuva). The second coin dedicated to Aukštaitija will be issued into circulation in early 2020.
The €2 commemorative coin dedicated to Samogitia will be issued in a mintage of 500,000 pcs, of which 5,000 coins are BU quality in a numismatic package. The price of the BU quality coin is EUR 9. It is available for purchase on the Bank of Lithuania e-shop (coins.lb.lt), at the Bank of Lithuania cash offices in Vilnius and Kaunas, or through the official distributors of numismatic items. The commemorative unc quality coins are exchanged at their nominal value.
The coin dedicated to Samogitia is the eighth commemorative coin issued by the Bank of Lithuania. It has been issuing €2 commemorative coins since 2015 when Lithuania adopted the euro. By issuing €2 commemorative coins, the Bank of Lithuania aims at promoting awareness of the Lithuanian heritage, culture and most prominent events across Europe, as such coins are legal tender throughout the euro area.