The Bear of St. Gallen
SWITZERLAND, St. Gallen.
|Sale: Triton X, Lot: 948. Estimate $750.
Closing Date: Monday, 8 January 2007.
Sold For $950. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.
AR 1/2 Taler Klippe (14.13 g, 6h). Dated 1620. (rosette) MO : NO : CIVIT : SANGALLENSIS • 1620, bear, wearing collar with jewels, walking left on hind legs within pearl border / SOLI • DEO • OPT : MAX : LAVS • ET • GLORIA, crowned double eagle. Haller 1897; Divo & Tobler 1401b; HMZ 730; KM 60. VF, toned.
Ex Coin Galleries (10 November 1998), lot 2070.
The origin of the bear as a symbol of St. Gallen comes from legend. According to folklore, when the Irish missionary Gallus decided to build a monastery near the river Steinach around AD 600, he encountered a hungry bear. Gallus fed the bear some bread, and, in return, the bear helped him gather wood for the building. In recognition of its importance in the founding of St. Gallen, the bear became a symbol of the town.