The Gangut rouble is a highly prized commemorative coin issued in remembrance of the Russian victory over the Swedish fleet near the Finnish coast at Gangut. The Standard Catalog reports that only 317 coins were made initially, plus an unknown number of re-strike coins a few years later. A re-strike is a coin made with original dies but at a later time. Early and re-strike issues both command high prices.
The Standard Catalog quotes these values, but, in our opinion, these values are too low:
worn: $1000 US dollars approximate catalog value
average circulated: $4000
well preserved: $6500
fully uncirculated: $8500
The coin in our primary picture is a beautiful specimen from a recent auction by Künker in Berlin and several other cities. It sold for 23000 euros, or about $30000 US dollars, far surpassing the published catalog values. This attests to the rarity and desirability of this coin, especially fully uncirculated specimens.
CoinQuest thanks Künker for use of their coin image.
As with all rare coins, Gangut roubles are subject to strong counterfeiting. There is a well-known counterfeit shown in our secondary picture. The counterfeit is made of silver, and it may bring a few dozen US dollars in a quiet sale. But in general it is illegal to own counterfeit coins and collectors should shun them.
From our two pictures you can see that the overall look and feel of the counterfeit is much different than the genuine coin. A sure-fire diagnostic is the center tail feather on the reverse side. On the real coin it points almost directly at the A in MOHETA. On a fake it misses the A.
The counterfeits tell and important story. I have seen them sell at auction for $600 when they are, in fact, worth $20 in silver. Always *** always *** deal with a reputable coin dealer and stay away from questionable coin operations. If you want to collect (or invest) in expensive collectible coins, start small and develop working relationships with dealers you trust. It usually takes several years to build such relationships.