Modern Fakes of Dutch coins
sold in Galle, Sri Lanka

Photographs from visit
in December 1999

Very crude recent copies of the dutch bar coin are sold by street hawkers near the Galle lighthouse, seen in background of this photograph I took of a collection of these fakes I placed on a wall next to my folder.

Fakes at Galle Lighthouse
Array of fake Coins
The other coins most copied are the Galle 2 Stuiver and 1 Stuiver dumps. The fakes are manufactured not only in copper, but also in Silver as seen in upper right of closeup image. They always have some genuine recent coins and common ancient coins mixed in as seen on left hand side of image.
Light House in Galle Seller of Fake Coins in Galle
The second seller closer to the lighthouse. Fakes on display on palm of his hand, taken out of wooden box. The three independently operating hawkers with whom I chatted, readily admitted when confronted and said they were " just souvenirs for Tourists". They all claimed that the copies are made in Kandy, although more reliable sources told me they are made near Galle. The price depending on the gullibility of the tourist is any price upward of US$2 (cost to hawker). I did not buy any to avoid giving any encouragement to this local cottage industry.
Dutchmuseum in Galle
The institutional abuse was at the so called "Dutch Museum" in Galle, a short walking distance away.
Display of fakes in DutchMuseum
The display of these recent copies among the Dutch-Museum collection, in an obvious attempt to give credibility to perpetuate the fraud of the street hawkers. This copper was glued down in tilted Display.

Fake Dutch 4 3/4 Stuiver Bar coins are frequently listed on Auction on ebay. I make it a point to inform Sellers on the nature of the items they are selling. In most cases the image is sufficient to identify a tourist fake. Most sellers stop the auction when informed. If the fake is of higher quality I inform them on my judgment on the authenticity and request them to post that information on the listing so buyers know what they are bidding on. I have got many thanks from readers for the information posted on this page. In 2001 July an ebay seller from Germany said, I quote
``I got these coins as a present from a wealthy family in Galle in the early seventies, as I was there on visit with my parents. As I remember they had lots of them in a bucket from which I could sort them out for me, not knowing anything about it at that time.....'' :-)
This seller pretended ignorance, didn't stop auction, and although he E-mailed me that he would give the highest bidder the option to withdraw, did so only after much correspondence.

See also a report from a Tourist who purchased some as well as a report from a seller who purchased some for eBay Auction.

Note it is also illegal to export out of the island any genuine items including coins more than 100 years old. Technically Modern fakes are OK, but the Customs will not probably identify them as such and if discovered will give you as much problems as the genuine article untill you prove they are fake.

Modern Fakes of Lankan coins warnings.
LakdivaCoins collection website.