1891 Netherlands 25 Cents

Historic 1891 Dutch Kwartje Shatters Auction Records

In a remarkable turn of events, a 25 Cents coin from the Netherlands, known as a kwartje, minted in 1891 during Queen Wilhelmina’s reign, has ascended to numismatic royalty. On Monday, this historic coin was sold for an astounding €1,045,000 ($1,130,376) at Heritage Auctions Europe-Cooperatief (HA-Europe), setting a new record for the highest price ever paid for a Dutch coin.

HA-Europe, a branch of Heritage Auctions—the world’s premier auctioneer of coins and currency—witnessed a bidding frenzy that shattered previous records. The last record was set in 2021 when an 8-fold gold rosenobel fetched €700,000 ($757,190). For the Kingdom of the Netherlands, the prior best was an 1867 gold double ducat, sold for €200,000 last year.

“We anticipated a hammer price between €300,000 and €400,000,” revealed Jacco Scheper, Managing Director of HA-Europe. “Nobody expected this world record.” The auction saw bids pour in rapidly, beginning at €300,000 and reaching its historic peak in just two minutes.

The 1891 kwartje is revered as the pinnacle of “Kingdom coins,” a term denoting coins minted during the Kingdom of the Netherlands era (1806-present). This specific coin, now the most expensive Dutch coin ever, is especially notable for its rarity and provenance. It has had only four owners over the past century and is the sole example available on the open collecting market, which undoubtedly contributed to its legendary status among collectors.

Scheper described the coin as “the Holy Grail for coin collectors” in an interview with RTL Nieuws. Its sale not only broke records but also highlighted the enduring allure and value of numismatic treasures.

This sale was part of a stellar week for World and Ancient coins at Heritage Auctions. The CSNS World & Ancient Coins Platinum Session and Signature® Auction amassed $11,904,407, contributing to a total of $52,341,143 from the Central States Numismatic Society auction events.

For coin enthusiasts and collectors, the sale of Wilhelmina’s 1891 kwartje is a momentous event that underscores the vibrant and ever-thriving world of numismatics. This record-breaking auction sets a high bar for future sales and demonstrates the exceptional historical and monetary value that rare coins can hold.

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