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Was it meant to circulate?

Sir Sisu

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I have often wondered the intent of older one-year type coins. Were they actually meant to circulate? Especially those that were of a relatively new denomination. Or those that were issued with precious metal. I'm sure there are many that were struck with the actual intent that they would circulate. But I wonder about those coins that were struck with a commemorative theme, person, event, etc: were these really intended to circulate or were they issued with the expectation that they would be put aside and not used for common circulation?


I'm not sure if there is an absolute answer for every example, but this question occurs on occasion when I come across such coins. For example the Lithuanian 5 litai 1936. Or what of the 10 litai of 1936. Were these intended to circulate as normal cash? The mintage figures for the 5 litai suggests that they were, but not so much the 10 litai. Anyone have any ideas?

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For Canada- all coins until 1970 were available as circulation pieces.

In recent years though, there have been "circulation" issue commemoratives that were only released to certain parts of the country (for example, there's a $1 coin commemorating the centennial of the Montreal Canadiens hockey club that was only released in the Montreal area)


My understanding is that a lot of European coins (e.g. Germany 1972 Olympics commem. 5DM and 10DM silver or Netherlands silver 10G and 50G 1970s-1990s), especially in later years were made available for face value but were not intended to circulate.

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