The nation for itself. Who would not know the National Theater that symbolizes Czech patriotism and the cultural heritage of the 19th century. Its foundation stone was laid 150 years ago and on this occasion the Czech mint introduces the exceptional set of two gold mintages which are ducat and replica of a valuable commemorative medal. The construction of its own stone theater included the question of czech honor and pride in the 19th century. The co-operation of all social classes contributed to its creation and the ceremonial laying of the foundation stone which took place on May 16, 1868 - 150 years ago became a nationwide political manifestation. The czech enthusiasm for the National Theater did not last long, because the building made by our greatest artists was destroyed by devastating fire on 12 August 1881. At that time, however, real czech social cohesion appeared and the theater was soon reopened. The notes of Smetana´s Libuse welcomed visitors in 1883, which is 135 years ago. The reconstruction was symbolically up to 100 years later and all these anniversaries are commemorated by a commemorative set consisting of two gold mintages that are ducat and medal replicas, which the Czechoslovak government granted for the reconstruction and completion of the National Theater in 1983.
The obverse side of the ducat made by the leading academic sculptor Michal Vitanovsky, presents the neo-Renaissance building of the National Theater with the Legion Bridge, the Vltava river and the peace dove in the foreground. Composition is complemented by the annual years of 1868 and 2018 together with the inscription NATIONAL THEATER - PRAGUE. The reverse side of the ducat is then dedicated to the scene of the solemn laying of the basic stone. The act is attended by the honorary dignitary and by the observers of common people, and there is a ceremonial tapping with a hammer. The future National Theater is outlined in the background, and the inscriptions indicate THE LAYING OF BASIC STONE – NATION FOR ITSELF.
The replica of the medal of Luděk Havelka from 1983 was prepared by the expert academic sculptor Jan Lukáš. The obverse side offers a view of the original building of the theater as well as of the New Scene building, which was created during the very last reconstruction. The composition of the obverse side is supplemented by the annual years 1883 and 1983. The reverse side belongs to the trige sculptular group with the sculpture of the goddess Niké from the roof of the National Theater, the date of the reopening on November 18, 1983, together with the inscription RECONSTRUCTION AND COMPLETION AWARD.
The set of two gold mintages weighing a ducat is placed in a luxurious wooden etui with a certificate of authenticity illustrated by Michal Vitanovský.