Close this search box.

The Saint Lambert Communion Tokens of Liege, Belgium

Josh “Captain Redbeard” Scott (Follow @redbeardsrelics —
Link to Captain Redbeard’s original post on Instagram:

The 17th century was full of fascinating treasures of coins and art, maps, chests, and so much more.

The church in Liege commissioned 5 variations of these tokens over the years, with very few having survived the ages. The years they were minted were 1635, 1653, 1650, and 1686 (2 varieties this year!). The rarest of them all though, and by far the most expensive, is the first year of issue; the 1635 token. @pcgscoin has only graded one other of these beauties, and this one I came across slid in as the finest known!

Each of these tokens carries its own beautiful imagery and style of skull and bones. The “ANNIVERSARIUM” on many of their obverse sides refers to an anniversary of moving Saint Lambert’s bones from the town of Maastricht, to the church in Liege. This also has been used as a dual meaning by some as a reference to the anniversary of a loved one’s death, as these tokens were often given at funerals to remember the day of one’s passing.

On the reverse, many of these tokens show crossbones with two fireballs and the text “EXCLESI. LEODI.” which simply translates to the Church of Liege.

While pirates may have popularized the image of the skull and bones, they certainly weren’t the first! The symbol of the skull and bones has been carried across the ages and will continue to do so. A good reminder that memento mori is just as prevalent today as it was all those centuries ago!

Click the PLAY button below to view the video:

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top