Up until the middle of the 18th century, Russia had predominantly copper coins in circulation. The government made frequent attempts to stop minting such coins, fairly large in size and heavy, but had to revert to this practice for a variety of causes, both objective and subjective ones. We know but little about minting and its history in Russia. Now and then coins are found which were never known before. It may be that an oversize copper coin that I hit upon during diggings in the Alexandria landscape park at Petershof, a historical site south of St. Petersburg, is one such unique find. "A Sestroretsk rouble, is it?" was my first thought. We know of two authentic coins like that in the world. True, its copies can be seen in museums here and there - coins struck much later with the aid of genuine odies for a small group of collectors from among the nobility.
by Viktor KORENTSVIT, leading archeology expert, State Control Committee for the Protection of Historical and Cultural Monuments (KGIOP), St. Petersburg City Counci
For quite some time Russian treasurers worked hard to find an adequate weight for coins in circulation. In 1757 one fixed what was termed a coin foot* of 16 roubles per pud, a weight standard that held over into the next, nineteenth century. That was pretty heavy coinage that caused transportation problems. Yet it was not possible to cut the weight - otherwise the inevitable difference between the market value of bullion and the face value of coins could have stimulated a minting of counterfeit coins. In the long run paper money, the bank notes, became necessary.
On the 25 of May, 1762, Emperor Peter III decreed it was imperative to strike light-weight copper coins and increase the stock of money capital.
Articles in this rubric express the opinion of the authors. - Ed .
* A coin foot, a standard weight unit for the mass of a coin relative to its denomination. That is a definite quantity of metal (bullion) was to be used for the str ... Читать далее