tokens issued by Ursian Brothers
20.2 mm, 2.27 g, brass
outer pearl circle, face value 1
outer pearl circle, inscription "FRAȚII URSIAN" meaning "URSIAN BROTHERS"

In [1], monography published in 2012, the Ursian brothers are depicted as land lessees in the area of Bacău county. Urseanu, Ursanu or, in (mainly) Transylvanian spelling, Ursean (with alternate spelling: Ursian) is a Romanian family name meaning bear-like, from Latin ursus = bear. As well, in [1] "Frații Ursianu” tokens featuring an "u" at the end of the name are described. In our opinion there are very small chances for two separate issuers to have existed.

Since the publishing of [1] new information sources have become available on the Internet. One may note that the name Ursian is strongly associated to the city and county of Botoșani. In the city of Botoșani there is a house - historical monument called Ursian - Fischer House. It is known to have been bought in 1906 by some Gheorghe Ursian with the army rank of captain. The information exists that Gheorghe Ursian was appointed prefect of the Botoșani county in 1911. A certain D. Ursian was mayor of Botoșani between 1908 and 1911 [2].

In the history of the Saint Paraschiva (saint known as well as Saint Paraskeva of the Balkans) parish mentioned by [3] a Gheorghe Ursian appears as owner of the Mihălășeni estate, and as such had helped the villagers to build a church in 1870. In the same document the Ursian brothers appear mentioned explicitly as founders of a new church in Mihălășeni during year 1905. Mihălășeni village lies in the Botoșani county, approximately 35 km away from the city of Botoșani. There is still a Ursianu (or Urșianu) Mansion in this village.

A certain Gheorghe Ursianu is mentioned by the great historian Nicolae Iorga în [4]. It is a former primary school mate who got married to a relative of the historian.

Based on the information listed above in can be pertinently hypothesized that the Ursian brothers' tokens were used, most likely, on the estate of Mihălășeni. Possibly more documents will come to light and confirm (or deny) this hypothesis.


1. Schäffer E., România. Jetoane, semne valorice și mărci, Guttenbrun [the old German name of Zăbrani village in Arad county], 2012.

2. Gorovei A., Monografia orașului Botoșani. Ediția Primăriei de Botoșani, Institutul de Arte Grafice "M. Saidman" Folticeni, 1926.

3. * * *, Monografie. Parohia Sfînta Cuvioasă Parascheva - Mihălășeni, accesat octombrie 2023.

4. Iorga N., O viață de om așa cum a fost. I. Copilărie și tinereță. Editura N. Stroilă, București, 1934.

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