The origins of the Universalmuseum Joanneum coin collection go back to Archduke Johann who, when defining the founding principles of the Landesmuseum in 1811, laid down the requirement that “Styrian coins of all metal types” should be collected.
Having now grown to around 70,000 items, the Coin Collection of the Joanneum is one of the largest public coin collections in Austria and includes outstanding pieces from the Graz mint and hoards found all over Styria.
Among the numismatic highlights on show in the “Hans Ulrich” room, the following deserve particular attention:
Thalers from the Graz Mint
Thalers were minted in Graz from 1574 till 1765. Their large multiples are particularly splendid examples of great craftsmanship in die cutting. The Joanneum Coin Cabinet includes practically 80 % of all variants and years minted in Graz. Constituting the highpoint of these series are the Panthertalers of Archduke Karl II, Dreifachtalers of Emperor Ferdinand II and his son Ferdinand III, rare Klippe pieces along with the last Styrian Thalers produced under the reign of Maria Theresia.
Treasure of Scheifling
During building work in 1936 on what was then the Scheifling mansion tavern, a linen sack was discovered by chance, hidden behind a door lintel. Inside the sack were more than 400 gold coins and a large number of golden rings, chains and belts. A total of 118 gold coins came to the Universalmuseum Joanneum Coin Cabinet. They originated in a number of different European countries and were minted mostly during the period 1495 till 1590. The outstanding detailed execution bears witness to the wealth of artistic perception and highly characteristic creative power of minting in the Renaissance period. In all the excitement surrounding the find, a written note, originally found within the sack and perhaps giving information about the owner of the gold, was mislaid. The high value of the coins, and their minting locations ranging from Poland to Spain and Portugal, imply that the owner had a significant fortune and was engaged in long-distance transactions.
A coin medallion of Emperor Gordianus III from 242 A.D., found in Flavia Solva in 1877.
A fourfold Talerklippe from Salzburg at the time of the Domweihe festival in 1628, which has been at the Joanneum since the 1st half of the 19th century.
Another highpoint of the permanent collection is the beautiful medallion treasure of Archduke Karl II of Inner Austria, made by Antonio Abondio in 1567, which was presented by the provincial prince to a deserving subject as a special indication of his Liberalitas and grace.