From thaler to dollar: the Age of Silver

An amazing history of the origin and the circulation of the thaler - the main silver coin of the countries of the Old and New World.

Visitors will be able to get to know the diversity and the artistic expressiveness of thalers and will learn, through the prism of numismatics, how the history of different states developed.

The exposition contains over 200 coins, ranging from the very beginnings of of the 16th century to the late beginnings of the 20th century. Among the exhibits is one of the earliest thalers, which gave its name to this denomination - the Joachimstaler.

One stand-out display is that of a series of mountain thalers, which were minted in Germany, where metal extraction was well-developed and the work of miners was highly valued. On the tour, you will be able to see the engravings of the first scientist-mineralogist Georgiy Agricola, which have been brought to life.

Find out how the new silver denomination, having traveled a long way across the European continent, crossed the ocean and became the dollar - the national currency of the United States, with the help of an interactive map of the world.

Augmented reality will take visitors to the medieval town of Annaberg-Buchholz, and then to another continent: to the America just discovered by Columbus, including the legendary Mount Potosi.

And for all those who love to test their knowledge, a fascinating quiz has been prepared at the exhibition, where everyone can test their knowledge of the history of this amazingly beautiful coin - the thaler.


The Age of Silver

On this tour of the exhibition ‘From Thaler to Dollar: The Era of silver,’ you will learn how the ‘Joachimstaler’ became the thaler, and how the name itself was modified in the monetary systems of other countries, as well as how the well-known dollar sign appeared and what two-thaler, three-thaler and five-thaler coins were needed for.

You will have the chance to admire a variety of thalers with detailed panoramic views of the free cities of the Holy Roman Empire, which served, in a way, as a ‘business card’ for each city. You will learn how to understand various legends and symbols on thalers with various plots. You will find out what the ‘bell thaler,’ or ‘thaler with a willow in a storm,’ is dedicated to, and why a white horse and a wild, fairytale forest man are often depicted on the thalers originating in Braunschweig.

What did silver coins look like before the era of the thaler? Who is depicted on the ‘three brothers’ thaler? What symbolism was characteristic of the thalers of spiritual rulers and what was the thaler called in Russia? You will learn all this and much more on a tour of the exhibition ‘From thaler to dollar: The Age of Silver.

Visit without a guide

For those who prefer to wander in silence on their own, immersing themselves in the museum space, and studying the exhibits they like in more detail without being distracted by the chatter of the group or the guide’s stories.