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Information about mint: Aegina Mint

Mint nameAegina Mint
LocationAegina
CountryGreece
Dates1828 - 1833
Description

The [Greek] National Mint of Aegina (Εθνικό Νομισματοκοπείο Αιγίνης) was the mint which produced the first currency of modern Greece.

In 1828, the creation of a national currency was one of the most pressing issues for the newborn Greek state, so that the monetary chaos reigning in the country could subside. At that time, transactions were settled with a wide variety of coins, including the kuruş; coins from major European states, such as France, Britain, Russia and Austria, were also popular. Therefore, minting a new currency - the newly introduced phoenix - was one of the greatest priorities. The Russian government lent Kapodistrias' administration 1.5 million rubles to start the project.

Governor Kapodistrias made Alexandros Kontostavlos responsible for minting the phoenix. Kontostavlos travelled to Malta, where he negotiated the purchase of several coin presses, originally owned by the Knights of St. John of Malta (the Knights Hospitaller). The machines were brought to Aegina.

The dies for the phoenix were carved by Chatzigrigoris Pyrobolistis, an Armenian jeweller, and the first sample coins were produced on 27 June 1829, in the agreed denominations of 1 phoenix, 20 lepta, 10 lepta, 5 lepta and 1 lepton. On 30 June 1829 the National Mint was founded, and production of coins continued. 1 October 1829 was set as the official launch date for the new currency. All phoenixes were minted at the National Mint of Aegina, which continued to operate until 1833. Coincidentally, Aegina is where the first ancient and modern Greek coins were minted – the staters of Aegina were minted in around 700 BC and were the first to circulate in the Ancient Greek world.

In 1832, with the arrival of King Otto as monarch, the currency system was reformed and the drachma was introduced to replace the phoenix at par. The Aegina Mint was closed, with some machines transferred to the new Royal Mint in Athens and others abandoned.

Known mint marks of Aegina Mint:
Anchor and chain

The Aegina Mint used the anchor and chain privy mark on one coin only, the silver Phoenix issued in 1828.

No mint mark

On copper coins, the Aegina Mint had no mint marks.

5 main coin types minted predominantly or exclusively at Aegina Mint:
Greece / One Phoenix (1828 - 1828) Greece / Twenty Lepta (Phoenix) (1828 - 1831) Greece / Ten Lepta (Phoenix) (1828 - 1831) Greece / Five Lepta (Phoenix) (1828 - 1831)
Greece / One Lepton (Phoenix) (1828 - 1831)
11 coins minted at Aegina Mint:
CountryCoinMintageMint mark
Greece One Phoenix 1828 12,000 (12000) Anchor and chain
Greece Ten Lepta 1828 450,000 (450000) No mint mark
Greece Five Lepta 1828 400,000 (400000) No mint mark
Greece One Lepton 1828 480,000 (480000) No mint mark
Greece Ten Lepta 1830 1,234,000 (1.2 million) No mint mark
Greece Five Lepta 1830 380,000 (380000) No mint mark
Greece One Lepton 1830 426,000 (426000) No mint mark
Greece Twenty Lepta 1831 2,273,000 (2.3 million) No mint mark
Greece Ten Lepta 1831 1,223,000 (1.2 million) No mint mark
Greece Five Lepta 1831 22,000 (22000) No mint mark
Greece One Lepton 1831 612,000 (612000) No mint mark