Gold coin 20 francs/8 florins (Münze Österreich)
The gold franc, also called the florin, is better known as the Austrian gulden. This was originally a silver coin that was used freely in the whole territory of the Latin Monetary Union. This monetary union, organized to standardize common currencies, was made up of France, Belgium, Italy and Switzerland from 1865. Greece, Serbia, Spain, Bulgaria and Romania joined later.
Austria signed an accession agreement, but it was never implemented. However, the minting of these impressive gold coins, the guldens, was initiated. Their intention was to align the weight and clarity of Austrian gold coins with the currencies of other countries in the Union. There were two versions of the gold coins, the 4 and 8 guldens. They were minted until 1892, when they were replaced with corona. This is the reason that the newly minted coins, known as re-strikes, have this year printed, along with the Austrian coat of arms and “Imperium Austriacum” engraved on the back of each coin. On the face of the coin is the portrait of Emperor Franz Joseph, who was emperor of Austria-Hungary from 1848 to 1916. A 4 gulden gold coin was worth 20 francs or 8 florins.
Austrian mint Münze Österreich is owned by the Central Austrian bank. It is one of the oldest mints in the world. Historically, it was first mentioned in 1371, but the actual history is about two centuries longer. There is an interesting story about its beginnings. On his way back from the Crusades, Richard the Lionheart was apprehended in Austria (due to a prior offence towards Duke Leopold V). Richard paid 15 tons of silver in ransom. Leopold decided to use that silver to make coins, thus starting the first mint business in Vienna. Along with coins, Munze Osterreich produces Austrian euro coins, as well as commemorative medals. Auro Domus is their official partner in Croatia.