PERU, silver, patriotic medallet, 1903


PERU, medallet, 1903, Obverse: GLORIA ETERNA A LOS PROCERES DEL 28 JULIO 1821 in wreath, Reverse: ASAMBLEA PATRIOTICA DEL VALLE DE CHICAMA 28 JULIO 1903, holed for loop, silver, 23mm, 4.97g, XF

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From the 1870s to the 1950s several medal factories made a business out of small commemorative medals. Silver was cheap enough that anyone who had an event could get a batch of silver mementos made.

There are two kinds of things that are called “medals.” One is things that look like coins but don’t express a value. Sometimes those medals are considerably larger than most coins. The other kind of medal is a metal thing designed to be displayed on one’s chest, often a reward for something, often in a military context. If the medal is small enough it is sometimes called a “medallet.”

The word “exonumia” is used to describe all kinds of things that are “like” coins but are not coins. I wrote a blog post on that subject. Basic categories: 1. used like a coin but not issued by a national government, 2. looks like a coin but not made for spending, 3. other things that we are interested in.