Obverse. Photo © NumisCorner.com
  • 5 Deutsche Mark 1971, KM# 128.1, Germany, Federal Republic, 100th Anniversary of the Foundation of Germany
  • 5 Deutsche Mark 1971, KM# 128.1, Germany, Federal Republic, 100th Anniversary of the Foundation of Germany

The German Empire (German: Deutsches Kaiserreich, officially Deutsches Reich), also known as Imperial Germany, was the German nation state[10] that existed from the Unification of Germany in 1871 until the abdication of Kaiser Wilhelm II in 1918.

It was founded in 1871 when Wilhelm I, King of Prussia from the Hohenzollern dynasty was proclaimed the German Emperor in the Hall of Mirrors at the Palace of Versailles. Berlin became its capital with the Berlin Palace as the Emperor's official residence. Its constitution then entered into force, and Otto von Bismarck became the first Chancellor. As these events occurred, the Prussian-led North German Confederation and its southern German allies were still engaged in the Franco-Prussian War. The state was founded with the notable exclusion of Austria, and as such, represented the so-called Lesser German solution (Kleindeutsche Lösung).

The German Empire consisted of 26 constituent territories, most of them ruled by royal families. They included four kingdoms, six grand duchies, five duchies (six before 1876), seven principalities, three free Hanseatic cities, and one imperial territory. Although Prussia became one of several kingdoms in the new realm, it contained most of Germany's population and territory, thus remaining a powerhouse with the major say in imperial affairs. Its influence also helped define modern German culture.

Engraver: Robert Lippl


Country name, Federal Eagle divides date above, value and Karlsruhe State Mint mark (G) below.

The coat of arms of Germany displays a black eagle with red feet, beak and tongue on a golden field. This is the Bundesadler or "Federal Eagle", formerly the Reichsadler or "Imperial Eagle". It is a re-introduction of the coat of arms of the Weimar Republic (in use 1919–1935) adopted by the Federal Republic of Germany in 1950. The current official design is due to Tobias Schwab (1887–1967) and was introduced in 1928.

19 71
5 G


Depicts the Reichstag with an inscription "The German People" and dates below. Engraver's initial (L) on the right. 6-pointed star below date.

The Reichstag is a historic edifice in Berlin, Germany, constructed to house the Imperial Diet (German: Reichstag) of the German Empire. It was opened in 1894 and housed the Diet until 1933, when it was severely damaged after being set on fire. After World War II, the building fell into disuse; the parliament of the German Democratic Republic (the Volkskammer) met in the Palast der Republik in East Berlin, while the parliament of the Federal Republic of Germany (the Bundestag) met in the Bundeshaus in Bonn.

The ruined building was made safe against the elements and partially refurbished in the 1960s, but no attempt at full restoration was made until after German reunification on 3 October 1990, when it underwent a reconstruction led by architect Norman Foster. After its completion in 1999, it once again became the meeting place of the German parliament: the modern Bundestag.

The term Reichstag, when used to connote a diet, dates back to the Holy Roman Empire. The building was built for the Diet of the German Empire, which was succeeded by the Reichstag of the Weimar Republic. The latter would become the Reichstag of Nazi Germany, which left the building (and ceased to act as a parliament) after the 1933 fire and never returned; the term Reichstag has not been used by German parliaments since World War II. In today's usage, the word Reichstag (Imperial Diet Building) refers mainly to the building, while Bundestag (Federal Diet) refers to the institution.



The "Deutschlandlied" (English: "Song of Germany") has been the national anthem of Germany since 1922. Since World War II and the fall of Nazi Germany, only the third stanza has been used as the national anthem. The stanza's beginning, "Einigkeit und Recht und Freiheit" ("Unity and Justice and Freedom") is considered the unofficial national motto of Germany, and is inscribed on modern German Army belt buckles and the rims of some German coins.


5 Deutsche Mark

100th Anniversary of the Foundation of Germany

KM# 128.1 Jaeger# 409 Schön# 127
Type Commemorative Issue (Non-circulating)
Material Silver
Fineness 0.625
Weight 11.2 g
Diameter 29 mm
Thickness 2.07 mm
Shape round
Alignment Medal
Karlsruhe State Mint (G)

Related coins

Silver, 11.2 g, ⌀ 29 mm
150th Anniversary of Birth of Friedrich Wilhelm Raiffeisen

Silver, 11.2 g, ⌀ 29 mm
150th Anniversary of Birth of Max Joseph von Pettenkofer

Silver, 11.2 g, ⌀ 29 mm