Arrival: Latvia Foreign Rulers 1 Lats Silver Coin

The Latvian Times and Values coin program tells the story of Latvia in the European and global context. The program is grouped into four different series: Roots, Time, People, and State. The fourth series State tells the story of Latvia rising from obscurity, suffering through a dark era, and re-emerging once again free.

Pictured above is the Foreign Rulers coin, which represents the dark era from 1940 to 1991. The obverse includes fragments of the coat of arms of the Republic of Latvia with the letters composing “LATVIJAS REPUBLICA” scattered in the fringes of the empty field. The reverse design includes the shattered coat of arms with an inscription beneath which translates to “God, Thy Earth is Aflame!” The coin is struck in proof quality, and the fields which appear as black in the scan above are deeply mirrored.

I found the design of the coin to be incredibly bold and evocative. The dark period within Latvian history would seem to be a difficult topic to convey on a coin, but I think the design choice accomplishes this. In hand, the coin is both jarring and intriguing for literally breaking a traditional design concept to illustrate the coin’s theme.

I picked up this coin first, but then was also able to acquire the other two coins within the series. The three coins are Fight for Freedom, Foreign Rulers, and Rebirth of the State.

Latvian coins do not seem to receive a lot of attention, but I have several in my collection, which I have acquired for their well executed or uncharacteristic designs. Above is a coin issued for the 800th anniversary of the first coinage struck in Latvian territory, which features an interesting “coin within a coin” design. You can see some of Lativa’s other silver coins here.

On the horizon is a 5 Lati Coin that will mark the 90th anniversary of the first currency issued by an independent Latvia. The tribute coin reproduces the design of the original 5 Lati coin, first produced in 1929, with the image of an allegorical female representing the nation. (Here are eBay auctions for the original version.) Although the new tribute coins have already been struck, they will not be available until some time later this year.

This is another Latvian coin that I intend to add to my collection. I will also acquire a nice example of the original coin.

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  1. says

    Hi Michael,

    On the upcoming 90th anniversary 5 lati coin, do you have any non-eBay dealers you’d recommend to buy it from? I am interested in the piece but haven’t found anyone who might sell it yet.

  2. Michael Zielinski says

    In the past I have bought my Latvian coins from or eBay. I picked up the most recent ones from an individual seller who was liquidating his inventory.

  3. Zwiggy says

    Latvia does have some amazing designs. I also love the “Coin of Destiny” from the roots series – I think it got the Coin of the Year award from Krause sometime back. (

    While the designs are Latvian – most of their coins are struck by the Mint of Finland.

  4. mike1960 says

    Great looking coins. I realy like the first one. I would love to get it as my first
    Latvian coin.

  5. Samuel says

    off topic, gatewest charged the two ducks a while ago right after i placed the order, but no coin yet. i think dealer usually charge before shipping.

  6. Shutter says

    i think dealer usually charge before shipping.

    Gatewest charges when you place the order. Technically, that’s a violation of credit card rules. You can complain, get the order cancelled, and order again when the coin is in stock and end up paying double. Alternatively you could wait a couple of weeks and get the coin at the original price. Remember too that even with the worst customer-unfriendly credit cards, you have 2 complete billing cycle to complain in order to preserve you rights. Meaning at least 60 days from the time the charge appears on the bill.

    FWIW, I called Gatewest about the double chicken and they said that it still had not come from RCM, but they were hoping before the end of June.

  7. Samuel says

    thx for the info. i have no problem with the early charge, but just feel it is different from all other dealers. i actually like to be charged immediately after placed order, so i can keep my credit card limit up to date.

  8. says

    A bit OT, but…
    On May 31, Michael Alexander on Coin Update had a post about a silver coin released by Pobjoy Mint to commemorate the queen’s Diamond Jubilee. The coin was to be sixty ounces of silver with sixty diamonds in it. It looked like a beautiful piece, but after the high price of the high relief Diamond Jubilee coin, I was expecting a pretty high price for this one as well.

    The coin went up for sale on their website in the last day or two:

    So, who has $14995.00 to spend on this coin? 🙂

  9. Hidalgo says

    I don’t know if y’all have noticed, but the Royal Canadian Mint is still selling the Two Loons silver coin. So much for visions of quick profits….!

  10. Shutter says

    So, who has $14995.00 to spend on this coin?

    Even if you had the money, why would you want to? For that kind of scratch, I’d rather grab a small stack of kilodragons.

  11. Shutter says

    Royal Canadian Mint is still selling the Two Loons
    In which alternative universe? In my corner of the spacetime, the RCM site says “Awaiting Stock”, which is RCM speak for NOT taking orders.

  12. Hidalgo says

    Royal Canadian Mint – where do you see that it’s sold out and no longer available… LOL

  13. Shutter says

    where do you see that it’s sold out
    Same place you see it still being for sale. Nowhere. What I see is what I said: “Awaiting Stock”. Which is what RCM says when they’ve taken all the orders they plan to take. It’s technically not sold (and therefore not sold out) until they’ve shipped it which they expect to do by the end of June.

  14. Hidalgo says

    LOL…! Be sure you tell others what you have to say when the Perth Mint says that an item is not available….. LOL!

  15. Shutter says


    I don’t know why you’re having trouble focusing, but they have pills for that now. In case you forgot, the Two Loons coin is not being sold by Perth Mint.

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