Republic of Zurich, Taler 1796

The mark originally was a northern Germanic unit of weight and became a basic currency unit in the Middle Ages: larger amounts of money were indicated in mark silver at that time. Although many regional mark weights developed in the course of the Middle Ages, the mark of the city of Cologne gained great importance all over the Holy Roman Empire.

The currency of Zurich was based on silver, too, and as everywhere else, it was based on the mark silver. Unfortunately we do not know the exact weight of the Zurich mark. From sources, we learn that Zurich employed the Rhenish mark (234.4 grams?) during the 16th century and the Cologne mark (233.9 grams) in the 17th and 18th centuries. The indication on the reverse of this coin – XI AUF 1 FEINE MARK – means, that 11 talers were minted from one mark of pure silver.