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Maria Theresa Thaler Silver Pendant from Oman

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Price: $188.00
Item Number: ab-8787-P

Maria Theresa Thaler Silver Pendant…Classic Tribal Jewelry from Oman

The Maria Theresa Thaler (Taler) is a silver bullion coin that has been used in world trade continuously since they were first minted.

It was named after Empress Maria Theresa, who ruled Austria, Hungary, and Bohemia from 1740 to 1780. After her death in 1780, the coin has always been dated 1780.  Almost 75 years later, in 1857 the Maria Theresa Taler was declared official trade coinage. (The word thaler eventually evolved into the word dollar in English.)

Original Maria Theresa Thalers are extremely rare. There are thought to be only 2-3 original Guenzburg struck Maria Theresa Thalers known to exist, and all are accounted for. Subsequent coins are called Maria Theresa Thaler restrikes. 

All such coins – both the originals and restrikes - have a silver content of between 83-85% silver, with the remainder being copper. There are hundreds of fakes and counterfeit Maria Theresa Thalers on the market, so care should be taken whenever purchasing.

All Maria Theresa Talers and restrikes have distinctive features. The Latin inscription on the front (obverse) side of this coin is "M. THERESIA D. G. R. IMP. HU. BO. REG." The Reverse reads "ARCHID. AVST. DUX BURG. CO. TYR. 1780 X,” an abbreviation meaning "Maria Theresa, by the grace of God, Empress of the Romans, Queen of Hungary and Bohemia, Archduchess of Austria, Duchess of Burgundy, Countess of Tyrol 1780.” Around the rim of the coin is the Latin motto of her reign: "Justitia et Clementia", meaning "Justice and Clemency".

Maria Theresa Talers were especially popular throughout the old Eastern world. At one time they were the official currency of Muscat and Oman. Because of the high silver content of these coins, many artisans used them to make jewelry, both as whole coins, or melted down to create other silver jewelry. (Jewelry resulting from the latter practice is commonly referred to as coin-silver jewelry.)

The coin on this Omani Pendant is most likely a Hafner 65 (H65) Maria Theresa Thaler restrike, minted in Kalkutta between 1940-1942. It found its way to Oman almost certainly through trade, where it was embellished with the distinctive large silver bail associated with prized Omani jewelry. 

In many cultures, including Oman, whole coins are customarily worn as jewelry not only for their beauty, but also as a source of ready currency whenever needed. The large silver bail on this pendant is perfect for wearing on a favorite cord, chain, or ribbon.

References: For more information on the fascinating Maria Theresa Thaler (Taler), please see an excellent Wikipedia article, and also the informative Maria Theresa Thaler 1780 website.

Measurements: (1 inch = 2.54cm)
ize = 2 inches long x 1-1/2 inch wide
     Bail width = 18mm external diameter; 10mm internal diameter
     Weight = 1.27 oz. (36.1 grams)
     Material = 83-85% Silver with copper (Maria Theresa Thaler restrike)