Obverse. Photo © Taras D
  • 1/4 Rupie 1891-1901, KM# 3, German East Africa (Tanganyika), William II
  • 1/4 Rupie 1891-1901, KM# 3, German East Africa (Tanganyika), William II

German East Africa (German: Deutsch-Ostafrika) (GEA) was a German colony in the African Great Lakes region, which included present-day Burundi, Rwanda, and the mainland part of Tanzania (formerly known as Tanganyika). GEA's area was 994,996 square kilometres (384,170 sq mi), which was nearly three times the area of present-day Germany, and double the area of metropolitan Germany then.

The colony was organised when the German military was asked in the late 1880s to put down a revolt against the activities of the German East Africa Company. It ended with Imperial Germany's defeat in World War I. Ultimately, GEA was divided between Britain, Belgium and Portugal and was reorganised as a mandate of the League of Nations.


Effigy of Emperor William II facing left surrounded by his title in Latin. On his head, Wilhelm II. wears a detailed Prussian Eagle helmet, which was worn as a parade helmet by the cavalry regiments Gardes du Corps and the Garde Cuirassier Regiment from 1890 onwards. It is decorated with the Prussian Garde Star and the crowned eagle.

William II (German: Wilhelm II, 1859–1941) was the last German Emperor (Kaiser) and King of Prussia, reigning from 15 June 1888 until his abdication on 9 November 1918. Acceding to the throne in 1888, he dismissed the chancellor, Otto von Bismarck, in 1890. He also launched Germany on a bellicose "New Course" in foreign affairs that culminated in his support for Austria-Hungary in the crisis of July 1914 that led in a matter of days to the First World War. An ineffective war-time leader, he lost the support of the army, abdicated in November 1918, and fled to exile in the Netherlands.



Coat of arms of the German East Africa Company (a striding lion in front of a palm tree) with date at bottom, surrounded by the inscription in German "German East Africa Company" and face value.

The German East Africa Company (German: Deutsch-Ostafrikanische Gesellschaft, abbreviated DOAG) was a chartered colonial organization which brought about the establishment of German East Africa, a territory which eventually comprised the areas of modern Tanzania, Burundi, and Rwanda.


Material Silver
Fineness 0.917
Weight 2.91 g
Diameter 19 mm
Thickness 1 mm
Shape round
Alignment Medal
Berlin State Mint (A)

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