Joseph Haydn 5 Euro Silver Coin

Joseph Haydn 5 Euro Silver Coin - click on image to enlarge
Joseph Haydn 5 Euro Silver Coin - click on image to enlarge

General Coin Information

On January 14, 2009, the Austrian Mint released the Joseph Haydn 5 Euro Silver Coin to mark the 200th anniversary of the famous composers death.

With an ability to sing, Haydn took his first steps into the musical world which led to some training on how to play the violin and harpsichord. Musical theory and composition would have to wait until adulthood, a fact which he explained away when he said:

"I listened more than I studied... therefore little by little my knowledge and ability were developed."

Unable to support himself as an adult with singing, he turned to other musical ventures such as tutoring. Haydn took every opportunity to expand his knowledge of musical composition, and soon was being sought out for his works. Offered and accepting some positions of lesser importance, he was then asked by the Esterházy family (well known and wealthy) to work for them, eventually attaining the position of Kapellmeister (music director).

It was while under the employ of the Esterházy house that Haydn's ability would truly flourish. Living most of the year in their remote estate, Haydn attributed this fact for his groundbreaking work:

"I was cut off from the world. There was no one to confuse or torment me, and I was forced to become original."

Word of his abilities began to spread, and while still under the employ of the Esterházys, Haydn started to receive commissions for work from others.

Haydn took advantage of his fame when he made two trips to London to conduct symphonies with a large orchestra. These trips not only allowed him to explore new musical possibilities, they set him up financially for the rest of his life.

Haydn spent the remaining years of his life in Vienna, the last few of which illness had robbed him of the ability to compose.

A maximum of 100,000 Haydn coins in uncirculated quality were minted. Another 450,000 coins of circulation quality were issued at face value and delivered to banks.

Obverse Design

A right facing portrait of Joseph Haydn is featured on the obverse with two upright violins. Musical notes and sheets of music are depicted in the background and beneath his collar. A small Euro-star logo, "Joseph Haydn", "1732", "1809" and "2009" are seen as well.

Reverse Design

The reverse side of the coin has the face value of 5 Euro surrounded by the arms of the nine federal provinces of Austria. Also inscribed are the words "Euro" and "Republik Österreich".

Haydn Silver Coin Specifications

   Mint: Austrian Mint
   Mintmark: N/A
   Finish/Condition: Uncirculated and Circulated
   Metal Content: 800 Ag
   Weight: 10 grams
   Diameter: 28.5 mm
   Edge: Nine-sided, Plain
   Issue Date: 14 January 2009
   Issue Price: 5 Euro for circulated
   Mintage Limit: 100,000 uncirculated/450,000 circulated
   Face Value: 5 Euro
   Obverse Designer: Helmut Andexlinger
   Reverse Designer: Helmut Andexlinger

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