Created on 16.04.2012

The Bank of Latvia has issued a 1-lats silver collector coin "100 Years in Olympic Games". The author of its graphic design and plaster model is artist Aigars Bikše. The coin was struck by Koninklijke Nederlandse Munt (the Netherlands).

The Bank of Latvia collector coins are miniature works of art dedicated to the Latvian treasures: events, achievements, people, and the nation's cultural values. This year, as our Olympians are getting ready for the London Olympic Games, we also celebrate an anniversary of this movement. One hundred years ago Latvians became Olympians – 31 athletes from Vidzeme and Kurzeme arrived in Stockholm in 1912 to participate in the Olympic Games. Moreover, the skilful clay pigeon shooter Haralds Blaus even won the Olympic bronze medal. So far in winter and summer Olympic Games the Latvian athletes have harvested 20 gold, 40 silver and 20 bronze medals.

One side of the coin features Greek Olympians almost three thousand years ago, and the other side shows Latvian Olympians a hundred years ago. Aigars Bikše, the artist of the coin, emphasizes the idea of the unity of culture: "The European culture is united. A hundred years ago Latvians just continued what the Greeks had initiated much earlier. And the coin features the current representation of both the above epochs."

The 1-lats silver coin "100 years in Olympic Games" is legal tender in the Republic of Latvia. The maximum mintage of the coin is limited to 5 000. The coin will be on sale at the Bank of Latvia and such traditional points of coin sale as banks and souvenir and jewellery shops. The price of the coin at the Bank of Latvia's cashier offices is 29.10 lats.

Information for editors
Money in form, collector coins are in fact works of art. They are usually made of gold, silver or other precious metals of especially high fineness. As opposed to currency in general circulation, collector coins are usually not intended to be used as a means of payment but as a gift, souvenir or collector's item. Consequently, the price of collector coins is considerably higher than their nominal value.
Since the re-introduction of the lats, the Bank of Latvia has issued 87 collector coins, of which many have won awards at the most prestigious international events of coin design art.