Commemoration of the Reformation

On October the 31 1517 Martin Luther put on the door of the Castle-church of Wittenberg (Germany) his 95 theses (about the reformation of the church). This attempt started the Reformation. Out of and beside the Roman Catholic Church an evangelical movement emerges that eventually debouches into a new protestant church. In the Netherlands this evangelical movement in its Lutheran variation attracted attention. The first Lutheran martyrs were executed on the Market of the city of Brussels. More people joined in. The political and religious uprising increased in the Low Countries against Spanish Catholic domination.

For the first time in 1617 the centennial of the reformation was commemorated by a jeton. And in the same year, Johann George I (1611-1656), elector of Saxony issued a coin on the Seculum Lutheranum/the Lutheran era.

As early as from the beginning of the 18th century Dutch Lutheran congregations and institutions issued medals regularly. The start was in 1717, the bicentennial of the reformation. Those medals were produced by important medallists and excelled immediately. For some of the commemorations more than one medal was issued. It shows the increase in prosperity amongst Lutherans particularly in Amsterdam.