Jack O. writes: Do you have any information on the composition (ie purity) of Russian gold and silver coins of the past? Particularly interested in 17th – 18th century. Great site – Thanks
The 17th Century saw few gold coins in Russia. There were small, approximately 1/2 gram pure gold kopeks and trade coinage of 1 and 2 ducats (.986 fine gold). Silver coins were generally approximately .720 fine.
In the 18th century silver coin varied in fineness from .396 to .868 fine silver. Gold coins became a regular part of the coinage system and 1/2 rouble to 10 rouble gold coins were minted. Fineness was generally .917 but some coins had a lower fineness, like the 1718-1828 2 roubles (.781 fine). Gold trade coinage (Ducats) continued to be .986 fine.