BOX THALER – BAVARIA
I have had several occasions to offer these marvelous Bavarian “Box Thalers” over the years. They are not particularly easy-to-find, so it has been at least five years since I offered the last one. It is an enlarged circular “coin” that measures 2″ in diameter. The obverse features a high-relief profile of Bavaria’s King Ludwig III. He is dressed in a military uniform as evidenced by the epaulettes on his tunic shoulders. The Thaler’s reverse features Bavaria’s Coat-of-Arms (with its magnificent twin rampant lions) as its central theme. Above it is the motto “In Treue Fest” Celebrating Loyalty). Below the Coat-of-Arms we see “Bayern Thaler 1914/16.” Now we come to the Box Thaler’s most interesting features. The 5/16″ thick “coin” separates into two pieces that open to reveal a series of round color images that are connected to one another at the sides. They fan out “accordion” style to expose portraits of King Ludwig III, Kaiser Wilhelm II, Bavarian Kronprinz Rupprecht, Generalfeldmarschall von Hindenburg, Otto Weddigen, Admiral Graf von Spee, and Generalfeldmarschall von Mackensen. The balance of the miniature paintings depicts various WW I scenes from 1914 through 1916. We see ground troops, zeppelins, aircraft, etc. The contents of this Box Thaler are complete. It is as fine an example as I have ever encountered.