Latvia, First Republic: Coins Issued and Used

Showing only circulating coin types (regular coinage plus circulating commemoratives).

Latvia, First Republic (1918 - 1940)
Information about what currencies were issued by Latvia, First Republic, with lists of coinage, as well as periods when foreign-issued currencies were used.
Currency: Rublis (First Rublis, 1919 - 1922). Used in Latvia, First Republic: (1919 - 1922)
CurrencyRublis (First Rublis, 1919 - 1922)
Used1919 - 1922

The Latvian rublis (Latvian: Latvijas rublis) was the currency of Latvia from 1919 to 1922 and again from 1992 to 1993.

After the proclamation of the Republic of Latvia in 1918, a large variety of different currencies were in circulation - ostrubles, ostmarks, German Papiermark, the so-called Tsar rubles, kopecks, the so-called Money of Duma and kerenkas, as well as promissory notes of several town municipalities.

On 4 February 1919, the Latvian Provisional Government authorized the Minister of Finance to issue the first currency notes of the Republic of Latvia - Treasury notes. They were denominated in rublis (plural: rubļi or rubłı) and kapeikas (plural: kapeiku), with 1 rublis = 100 kapeiku. On 27 March 1919 the exchange rate of 1 Latvian rublis was fixed to 1 ostmark, 2 German papiermark or 1½ Russian rubles respectively. In the period from April 1919 to September 1922, currency notes were issued in denominations of 5, 10, 25 and 50 kapeiku and 1, 2, 5, 10, 25, 50, 100 and 500 rubłı. No coins were issued.

The first state currency notes were printed in 1919 by Andrievs Niedra's government, which was considered pro-German and illegal, and was overthrown in the same year. The legal government of Kārlis Ulmanis printed quite similar notes but with different signatures on them. This government recognized the previously printed banknotes as a legal payment means. The designer of these banknotes was Jūlijs Madernieks.

On 3 August 1922, the Cabinet of Ministers approved the "Regulations on Money" which introduced the lats as Latvia's national currency. The lats was equal to 50 rubļi. The rublis remained in circulation alongside the lats for a time.

1 product (1922)
Product NameMintage
One Santims 1922 unknown
Currency: Lats (First Lats, 1922 - 1941). Used in Latvia, First Republic: (1922 - 1941)
CurrencyLats (First Lats, 1922 - 1941)
Used1922 - 1941

The lats was first introduced in August 1922, replacing the Latvian rublis at a rate of 1 lats = 50 rubļi. The lats was pegged against the gold standard from its introduction till 1940.

On 17 June 1940, Latvia was occupied by the USSR. After the dismantling of the Bank of Latvia and its replacement with the Latvia Republican Office of the Gosbank on 10 October, the Soviet ruble was introduced alongside the lats on 25 November 1940 at par, although the real monetary value of the rouble was about three times lower and thus both wages and prices were gradually raised to devalue the lats from June to November 1940. To lessen the effect of the exodus of goods sent by Soviet occupational personnel to the USSR, taking advantage of the new exchange rate, buyer limits for various goods were introduced.

Although the Soviet authorities initially pledged not to abolish the lats, it was taken out of circulation without prior warning at 13:05 on 25 March 1941, simultaneously nationalising all deposits larger than 1,000 lats. A part of the Latvian gold, silver and currency reserves were sent to Moscow at the start of the occupation.

Royal Mint
Royal Mint