An exhibition consisting of some two-hundred coins gives an insight into the history of medieval coinage, in the House of Wisdom. Based on the spirit of the location the history of the coinage at the Buda Castle is one of the highlights of the exhibition, as the coinage of Buda took place really close the building in the Middle Ages.
By opening the reconstructed building, an exhibition also opened its doors in the House of Wisdom, introducing the history of medieval Hungarian coinage. The exhibition introduces many rare coins of Hungarian kings from the era of Saint Stephen to the time of the Battle for Mohács and the period following that.
At the temporary exhibition entitled Coins of Kings – Coinage at the Buda court in the Middle Ages, with the aim of increasing financial consciousness and developing financial culture, visitors can familiarize themselves with the coins of medieval Hungarian kings by means of experience-based education.
For example, visitors can have a look at a coin with a very rare arched inscription, the so-called LANCEA REGIS, meaning “the king’s lance”; this was minted on the occasion of the coronation of king Stephen I, thus this is the oldest Hungarian coin. However, there is an even bigger rarity on display at the exhibition: the single known item from among the so-called ½ garas (groschen) coins minted by king Louis I can also be seen by visitors – emphasized Róbert Ujszászi, numismatist of the Central Bank of Hungary.
The exhibition introduces the history of medieval Hungarian coinage and the visitors can become familiar with the development of coins and the various innovations introduced by the monarchs. Thus, for example king Béla III – as an experiment – had copper coins minted, following the Byzantine example. The introduction of the bimetal money system is linked to the name of Charles I of Hungary, whereas out of the reforming measures of Matthias Corvinus the modernization of the money system survived for a longer term, compared to some other achievements of his, which in half a decade following his death came to nothing – highlighted Róbert Ujszászi.
The exhibition tries to be even more attractive for the younger generation by using various interactive solutions, just like 3D screenings, quizzes, uniquely developed games and money related tales. The exhibition is open for everyone and is free of charge all week long from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Besides Hungarian – counting on international attendance – the exhibition and the games are also accessible in English and Chinese.
The objective was to establish an exhibition with a design language that can make the set of coins easier to understand, interpret, and really memorable. The narrative installations of the exhibition together with the built environment create real harmonic unity, thus following the principles of modern museology.
The current exhibition can be considered as the precursor of the Money Museum and Visitor Centre expected to open in the Buda Palace in 2020. The implementation of the Money Museum and Visitor Centre has already started; the results thereof will be continuously published on the website of the Money Museum, as well as on its Facebook and Instagram pages.