Ukraine is a nation with a fascinating history that has for decades, been a meeting point for East and West, taking with that roll the political turmoil that comes with it. It is fitting, then, that the country’s bullion coins feature a central figure from often conflicting religions. Whether you are a religious collector or one fascinated by history and geopolitics, consider Ukrainian coins as you grow your collection.
In 2011, National Bank of Ukraine issued its first bullion coins. These two series, the Gold Archangel and the Silver Archangel, continue today. The coins feature Michael the Archangel on the reverse and the coat of arms of Ukraine on the obverse. Michael is central figure in Christianity, Judaism, and Islam and is Ukraine’s patron saint. Although these are bullion coins, they tend to have low mintages.
Banking started in Ukraine shortly before the country’s occupation by the Russian Bolsheviks, who quickly shut down financial institutions. Shortly thereafter, State Banks of the Russian SFSR emerged in the country. During the Perestroika of the 1980s and 1990s, National Bank of Ukraine operated as a Republican Branch of the Central Bank of the USSR. When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, the bank became the central bank of the new nation.
It started out issuing coins in kopiykas and Hryvnias along with bank notes in Hryvnias. In 1995, the bank began issuing Commemorative Coins. The earliest among these were struck from German silver, although the Mint quickly expanded to include silver, gold, nonprecious metals, and bi-metallic coins. Individuals in Ukrainian history, ancient towns, and sporting events have featured prominently among these issues.