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Switzerland 2004 Shooting Thaler - Fribourg Shooting Festival - Half-Naked Helvetia 50 Swiss Francs Taler High Relief Silver Proof

Price: $399.95 $249.95
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99978
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Product Description

This rare and truly beautiful silver proof follows in a long line of Swiss Shooting Thalers, with an allegorical design!

An aerial view of the Bernina Railway Spiral Loop Bridge with a railroad locomotive and train, near Brusio, in the canton of Graubünden, Switzerland.Talisman Coins is honored to be able to bring you this beautiful, proof finish Shooting Thaler. This year's National Shooting Festival is held in the Swiss Canton of Fribourg (for which Fribourg the city is the cantonal capital). We've managed to secure a few of the silver 50 Francs from a total mintage of only 1,500! These hard to find Shooting Thalers (or Talers; so-called from the days when that was their face value) have been issued since the mid-1800s in tiny numbers, and are very collectible, to say nothing of extremely attractive!

Click here for our entire selection of Swiss Shooting Thalers!

A panoramic view of the city of Fribourg, Switzerland, including the tower of its Gothic cathedral.Shooting Festivals
Swiss marksmanship is legendary, dating to the hero William Tell (who shot an apple off his son's head). This tradition of superior marksmanship was established during the Old Swiss Confederacy, in the 15th century, when Shooting Festival participants showed off their aim using the crossbow. Of course, Shooting Festivals are meant to be fun, but they have a practical side, too - they keep the citizen soldiery drilled and sharp! This has always been of particular importance in a country like Switzerland, with a relatively small population and surrounded on all sides by potential enemies.

Calling shooting is the national sport of Switzerland would be an understatement, to say the least! Today, the Swiss Shooting Association boasts 85,000 active, dues paying members! That amounts to over 1% of the total population! At a Swiss Federal Shooting Festival (a major event, held every five years), over 50,000 marksmen will convene for four weeks to demonstrate their shooting skills.

Click here for more great coins & medals featuring railroad trains and locomotives!

A Beautiful, Allegorical Design
Helvetia, the female personification of Switzerland (or the Helvetic Confederation), armed with spear and shield, as she appears on an early Swiss bank note.Here's an extremely handsome silver proof engraved with high relief, in the finest tradition of medallic art! So detailed and meticulous is the engraving that under a loupe, tiny details of the allegorical scene can be discerned! The perspective in this coin is amazing, in part due to the artistic excellence of the sculptor / engraver, and in part due to the use of high relief, which allows for more depth of design. Even the traditional motif around the rim is significantly raised above the field.

In the foreground, a beautiful, half-nude Swiss lass in classical dress gestures to towards the city of Fribourg (with its Gothic cathedral) behind her with a gentle sweep of her arm. The lady in question is an allegorical figure. She may be interpreted as the town of Fribourg and/or the Canton of Fribourg. Likewise, she could also be interpreted as Helvetia; her classical Roman-style toga garb is consistent with many representations of Helvetia, including the spear-armed lass on much of Swiss circulating coinage. (Helvetia is the allegorical female personification of the Swiss Republic.) She leans on a shield decorated with the coat of arms of the Canton of Fribourg (German: Freiburg), while in her hand can be found the laurel wreath with which she will crown the victor of the shooting festival!

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On the reverse, the traditional wreath of oak leaves (on the left) and laurel (on the right) surround the denomination of 50 Francs. Beneath the wreath, a marksman's powder horn and bandolier hang from a pair of crossed rifles or muskets. The legend indicates (in both French and German, two of the four official languages of Switzerland) that the coin is redeemable during the shooting festival (not that you'd want to!).

Click here for other great allegorical coins!

Packaging
Each coin is encapsulated and includes an official certificate of authenticity. The coins were not issued in a box.
 
Specifications
Country Switzerland
Year of Issue 2004
   
Face Value 50 Francs
Weight 25.00 g
Diameter 37.00 mm
Mintage Limit    1,500
   
Finish Proof
Composition .900 Fine Silver
Edge Plain
   
Certificate Included
Packaging Encapsulated

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