from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Gluckhennentaler of the city of Basel, minted around 1645, with the signature F. - F. of the stamp cutter and medalist Friedrich Fecher; Copper engraving from Koehler 's Historischer Münzbelustigung , XIX, p. 209 (diameter 43 mm)

The Gluckhennentaler is usually referred to as the Schautaler of the city of Basel and has no year. The front shows the cityscape of Basel, the back shows a mother hen with chicks . In the section there is the saying “Alit et protegit” ( Latin = she nourishes and protects). The Gluckhennentaler, minted around 1645, was meant to symbolize the care of the Basel council for the citizens of the city.

In most reference works, however, the reason for the coinage is given as the dispute between the council and the citizens of Basel that broke out in 1690 . Accordingly, the city had the Gluckhennentaler minted in 1691 as an expression of reconciliation . However, the signature FF on the first pieces is evidence that it was minted around 1645.

Coin history

The first Gluckhennentaler were minted around 1645 with the stamps of the medalist and coin die cutter Friedrich Fecher (* around 1588, † around 1660), who worked in Basel from 1640 to 1653. The mother hen with her chicks on the back was meant to symbolize the care of the city of Basel for its citizens. Another theory says that the Gluckhennentaler was coined on the mother's love .

Since the historian and numismatist Johann David Köhler (* 1684, † 1755) did not know the signature F. F. on the undated Gluckhennentaler, he dated it to 1691, the end of the dispute between the city council and the citizens of Basel.

"Although there is no year on the thaler , I still get the idea that there was an imaginary violent dispute between the magistrate and some citizens that gave rise to the coinage [...]."

In 1690, members of the Grand Council complained about their diminished reputation and the disorder in the administration. This led to a great internal disruption between the council and the citizens. As an expression of reconciliation, as Köhler assumed, the city of Basel let the Gluckhennentaler shape in 1691.

“With this coin, the citizens were again declared to be dear children and they were assured of tender care. In particular, the chicken that has risen on the hen has a relationship with the Malkontenten (the dissatisfied). "

This minting occasion mentioned by Köhler was adopted by the authors from the 18th to 20th centuries and is in some cases still cited. This shows that the signature on an undated coin or medal can be important for determining the minting time. Although the execution of the Schautaler and the events in Basel in the years 1690/1691 appear in connection, the correspondence is a coincidence. However, even after the revolt in Basel, the pieces continued to be minted without a year and mostly unsigned in variants. The time difference between the first minting around 1645 and the events that actually occurred 46 years later can only be proven in the first signed pieces.

In the following note, therefore, the events in Basel mentioned by Köhler with regard to the cause of the coinage he suspected are summarized.


According to Johann David Köhler's historical coin amusement (1747), the constitution of the city regiment of Basel is one

" Democracy mixed somewhat with the aristocracy and is administered by 280 honorary members who are divided into the small and large council ."

In its historical declaration, the cause, course and end of the nine-month disputes between the council and citizens in Basel are explained in detail. That is the revolt, which he suspected to be the cause of the coinage and which is still currently named in reference works of numismatics as the reason for the coinage.

The magistrate was only able to end the revolt in 1690 after a bloody suppression.

“To control all the more distant nonsense,” said Köhler, “was on Obrigkeitl. Order [...] many of the worst tumultuators [...] thrown into the prison, D. Fazio taken to the Esels Tower , questioned amicably and embarrassingly [...]. » He was " beheaded as a rioter, troublemaker and ringleader along with his brother-in-law and Johann Müller, as his [...] helpers, on September 28th on the Kornmarckt and his head, in disgust, stuck on the Rhine gate ." The other arrested persons were, according to Köhler, "partly expelled from the country , partly imprisoned , partly fined and other fines [...]". The lawyer D. Petri, who could not be caught, was the main initiator of the unrest, " proceeded with the eighth declaration [...] Vogelfrey made and put 400  Reichs-Thaler on his head."

Replicas of the Gluckhennentaler

The great interest in the Gluckhennentaler, usually in the form of a medal , is probably due not least to the historical events in Basel mentioned by Köhler, a dark piece of judicial history , the end of which he suspected to be the cause of the coinage. That may also be a reason why replicas were made until the 20th century.

Description of the show thaler

The so-called Schautaler was published as a copper engraving by Johann David Köhler under the name "The beautiful Gluck-Hennen-Thaler of the freyen Eydgenossische Stadt Basel". (See also the same photo of the original named there as a medal.) The silver Gluckhennentaler pictured here weighs about 23.4 grams, has a diameter of 43 millimeters and was minted around 1645 in Basel.


On the front, under the rising sun and a few clouds, the two sides of the city ​​of Basel divided by the Rhine can be seen. The city sides Grossbasel and Kleinbasel are connected in the embossed picture with a, according to Koehler, 250  paces long bridge. In the section, between palm and laurel branches, there is the city ​​arms of Basel with the Basel staff . The split signature F. - F. Friedrich Fechers is on both sides of the coat of arms.


On the banks of the Rhine and in the prospectus of the city of Basel there is a “ chicken ” with seven chicks. Three of them are visible in the plumage. Above is the radiant name of God , below in the section the saying ALIT ET PRO / TEGIT (Latin = she nourishes and protects).


The Gluckhennentaler is also known as the "Viertel-Gluckhennentaler". This leads to the conclusion that at least some mints are coins , probably Guldentaler . Most of the pieces are recorded as a medal . In some variants, the Basel coat of arms is held by two basilisks . Other so-called Gluckhennentaler were minted in gold, for example 8 and 10  ducats , i.e. circulating.

Individual evidence

  1. Heinz Fengler, Gerd Gierow, Willy Unger: transpress-Lexikon Numismatik , Berlin 1976, p. 117
  2. ^ Landesmuseum Württemberg, Münzkabinett Medal of the Council of Basel, around 1645 (variant)
  3. ^ Ueli Friedländer: Friedrich Fecher. In: Historical Lexicon of Switzerland . January 3, 2005 , accessed June 13, 2019 .
  4. Basel and its coin history (2008): From the coin cutters. Friedrich Fecher, stamp cutter in Basel from 1640.
  5. Künker auction 247, 2014, p. 234
  6. Johann David Köhler: In 1747 a weekly published historical coin amusement . Nineteenth Part, p. 211
  7. Johann David Köhler: In 1747 a weekly published historical coin amusement . Nineteenth part, pp. 209/216
  8. Carl Cristoph Schmieder: Handwortbuch der total Münzkunde , Halle and Berlin 1811, p. 199: Gluckhennenthaler, a rare Schauthaler from 1691. The description refers in summary to Köhler's coin amusement (Part XIX, p. 209).
  9. David Samuel von Madi (ed.): Complete Thaler-Cabinet… , 1766, p. 695, No. 4639: Signed with FF, otherwise based on JD Köhler's illustration and description.
  10. Johann Georg Krünitz: Economic Encyclopedia ... , 1781
  11. ^ Carl Cristoph Schmieder: Concise Dictionary of Entire Coin Studies , 1811
  12. ^ Friedrich von Schrötter , N. Bauer, K. Regling, A. Suhle, R. Vasmer , J. Wilcke: Dictionary der Münzkunde , Berlin 1970 (reprint of the original edition), p. 199
  13. Heinz Fengler, Gerd Gierow, Willy Unger: transpress-Lexikon Numismatik , Berlin 1976, p. 117
  14. Helmut Kahnt: Das Großes Münzlexikon von A to Z. , H. Gietl Verlag, Regenstauf 2005, p. 160: Gluckhennentaler der Stadt Basel from 1691 (Köhler's assumption)
  15. ^ Johann August Donndorff: History of Inventions ..., sixth volume, Quedlinburg and Leipzig 1821: Darin p. 165 "Gluckhennentaler, a rare show thaler from the city of Basel from 1697"
  16. Johann David Köhler: In 1747 a weekly published historical coin amusement . Part Nineteenth, p. 212
  17. Thomas Schibler: Jacob Henricpetri. In: Historical Lexicon of Switzerland . November 27, 2009 , accessed June 13, 2019 . After the bloody suppression of the movement, he had to flee Basel.
  18. Münzversand Hardelt: Later cast
  19. ^ Numis Luzern: replica 1967
  20. NumisBids: SINCONA AG Auction 9/2012, therein: Silver medal (around 1645), stamp by Friedrich Fecher. City view with rising sun. // Chicken with chicks. 23.43 g. Winter stone 121b. This embossing is identical to JD Köhler's copperplate engraving of the Gluckhennentaler.
  21. Johann David Köhler: In 1747 a weekly published historical coin amusement . Nineteenth part, p. 209: 250 paces long bridge
  22. ^ David Samuel von Madi (ed.): Complete Thaler Cabinet… (1766), p. 695, No. 4639: Signed with FF, based on JD Köhler's illustration and description.
  23. ^ Catalog Leo Hamburger (ed.), Frankfurt, Main 1924: p. 34, no. 851, "Viertel-Gluckhennentaler. Hen and chickens under d. beam. God's name »
  24. Künker auction 247, 2014, p. 234: Silver medal, “so-called Gluckhennentaler”, diameter 43 mm, weight 24.6 g
  25. Auction 27 and 28, Basel, 1942: No. 478, medal "Gluckhennentaler" from Fecher with coat of arms held by two basilisks, diameter 43 mm, 34.5 g
  26. sixbild: Gluckhennentaler 8 ducats