20 Kreuzer    (sold for $6.0)

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1852, Austrian Empire, Francis Joseph I. Silver 20 Kreuzer. Damaged VF+

Mint Date: 1852 Reference: KM-2211. Mint Place: Vienna (A) Denomination: 20 Kreuzer Condition: Damaged (heavy scratches and tooling), otherwise VF+ Material: Silver (.900) Diameter: 22mm Weight: 4.32gm

Obverse: Wreathed head of the young Franz Josef right. Mint initial of the Vienna Mint (A) below. Legend: FRANC . IOS . I . D . G . AVSTRIAE IMPARATOR . / A Reverse: Austrian imperial double headed eagle with coat of arms at chest, holding sword, imperial staff and orb. Legend: HVNG . BOH . LOMB . ET VEN . (20) GAL . LOD . ILL . REX . A . A . 1852

Franz Josef I (English: Francis Joseph) Emperor of Austria, king of Hungary, (1830-1916), born in Vienna. The last significant Habsburg monarch.

Franz Josef was the eldest son of Archduke Franz  Karl (Francis Charles), who was brother and heir of Austrian Emperor  Ferdinand I. Because his father renounced his right to the throne,  Franz Josef became emperor when Ferdinand abdicated near the end of the  revolution of 1848.

By the time Franz Josef stepped onto the throne,  Austria's position as a European "great power" was already in serious  decline. Three external factors furthered Austria's decline.

1. -- Austria's "betrayal" of  Russia in the Crimean War (1853-1856) seriously damaged Austro-Russian  relations. Lingering Russian ill will was a factor in the July (1914)  Crisis which led to the outbreak of WWI.

2. -- The unification of Italy  provided a new threat to the empire. In the decade that followed,  Austria lost nearly all of its Italian possessions, such as Lombardy  and Venetia.

3. -- The rise of Prussian  dominance of the German Confederation, and Austria's loss of the  Austro-Prussian war in 1866. German unification in 1871 made Austria  the lesser of the two German powers.

Austria was weakened by these reverses. Franz Josef  had little choice but to negotiate with Hungary on its demands for  autonomy. Austria and Hungary agreed to create a dual monarchy in which  the two countries would be equal partners. Under the empire of  Austria-Hungary, as it was known after 1867, Hungary had complete  independence in internal affairs, but the two countries acted jointly  in foreign affairs. (This fact contributed to the slowness of A-H's  response to the murder of Franz Ferdinand).

The same year, Franz Josef and Elizabeth were  formally crowned king and queen of Hungary. (Franz Josef married  Elizabeth, daughter of Duke Maximilian of Bavaria, in 1854. They had  one son, Rudolf, and three daughters.) As the dual monarch, Franz Josef  planned to grant some form of self-government to the Austrian Slavs,  but the German and Magyar elites who actually controlled the empire  opposed any sharing of power. The resulting dissatisfaction among  Austrian Czechs and Serbs further weakened the Habsburg realms and  caused increased friction with Russia, which championed the cause of  Europe's Slavic peoples.

Franz Josef's later years were marked by a series of  tragedies in his family. In 1894 his only son and heir to the throne,  Archduke Rudolf, committed suicide; Franz Josef's second younger  brother, Karl Ludwig, had died in 1896 from illness due to bad water he  drank while on a holy lands pilgrimage; in 1898 Elizabeth was  assassinated by an Italian anarchist.

Succession to the Austrian throne was not simple.  Following the suicide of Franz Josef's only son Rudolf, the next in  succession would have been Franz Josef's younger brother Maximillian.  Maximillian, however, had been executed by a firing squad in Mexico in  1867 after a 3 year reign as Emperor of Mexico. Karl Ludwig's oldest  son, Franz Ferdinand replaced Rudolf as heir to the throne. Franz  Ferdinand was assassinated by a Serbian nationalist in Sarajevo in June  1914. The assasination precipitated a crisis which led to the outbreak  of World War I.

Franz Josef died on November 21, 1916. He did not  live to see Austria's defeat in the war. His grand nephew, Karl I  assumed the throne for two years, but was the last Habsburg monarch.

William served in the army from 1814 onward, fought  against Napoleon I of France during the Napoleonic Wars, and was  reportedly a very brave soldier. He fought under Blücher at the Battles  of Waterloo and Ligny. He also became an excellent diplomat by engaging  in diplomatic missions after 1815.

During the Revolutions of 1848, William successfully  crushed a revolt that was aimed at his elder brother King Frederick  William IV. The use of cannons made him unpopular at the time and  earned him the nickname Kartätschenprinz (Prince of Grapeshot).

In 1857 Frederick William IV suffered a stroke and  became mentally disabled for the rest of his life. In January 1858  William became Prince Regent for his brother.

On January 2, 1890 Frederick William died and  William ascended the throne as William I of Prussia. He inherited a  conflict between Frederick William and the liberal parliament. He was  considered a politically neutral person as he intervened less in  politics than his brother. William nevertheless found a conservative  solution for the conflict: he appointed Otto von Bismarck to the office  of Prime Minister. According to the Prussian constitution, the Prime  Minister was responsible solely to the king, not to parliament.  Bismarck liked to see his work relationship with William as that of a  vassal to his feudal superior. Nonetheless it was Bismarck who  effectively directed the politics, interior as well as foreign; on  several occasions he gained William's assent by threatening to resign.

In the aftermath of the Franco-Prussian War William  was proclaimed German Emperor on January 18, 1871 in Versailles Palace.  The title "German Emperor" was carefully chosen by Bismarck after  discussion until (and after) the day of the proclamation. William  accepted this title grudgingly as he would have preferred "Emperor of  Germany" which, however, was unacceptable to the federated monarchs,  and would also have signalled a claim to lands outside of his reign  (Austria, Switzerland, Luxemburg etc.). The title "Emperor of the  Germans", as proposed in 1848, was ruled out from the start anyway, as  he considered himself chosen "by the grace of God", not by the people  as in a democratic republic.

By this ceremony, the North German Confederation  (1867-1871) was transformed into the German Empire ("Kaiserreich",  1871-1918). This Empire was a federal state; the emperor was head of  state and president (primus inter pares - first among equals)  of the federated monarchs (the kings of Bavaria, Württemberg, Saxony,  the grand dukes of Baden and Hesse, and so on, not to forget the  senates of the free cities of Hamburg, Lübeck and Bremen).

On May 11, 1879, Max Hödel failed in an  assassination attempt on William in Berlin. A second attempt was made  on June 2, 1879, by the anarchist Karl Nobiling, who wounded William  before committing suicide. These attempts became the pretext for the  institution of the Anti-Socialist Law, which was introduced by  Bismarck's government with the support of a majority in the Reichstag  in October 18, 1879, for the purpose of fighting the socialist and working-class movement. The laws deprived the Social Democratic  Party of Germany of its legal status; they prohibited all  organizations, workers' mass organizations and the socialist and  workers' press, decreed confiscation of socialist literature, and  subjected Social-Democrats to reprisals. The laws were extended every  2-3 years. Despite this policy of reprisals the Social Democratic Party  increased its influence among the masses. Under pressure of the mass  working-class movement the laws were repealed on October 1, 1890.

In his memoirs, Bismarck describes William as an  old-fashioned, courteous, infallibly polite gentleman and a genuine  Prussian officer, whose good common sense was occasionally undermined  by "female influences".

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Price
This coin has been sold for   $6.0

Notes: https://www.ebay.com/itm/372217408004 2018-02-15

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Posted by: anonymous
2018-02-09
Coin Group
 Denomination: 20 Kreuzer
 Metal: Silver
 State: Austrian Empire (1804-1867)
 Catalog reference:
  KM-2211
 
Description:   English
Coin variations: 6 instance(s)
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