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Along with pumpkins and turning leaves, October brings to mind the various Oktoberfests.  And what’s an Oktoberfest without a beautiful or fun beer stein?
Do you know the difference between a stein and mug – or even a tankard?  In the United States, people often use those terms interchangeably. 
The word stein comes from the word stone (German, of course.)  Many of these drinking vessels are made of some sort of stone or earthenware, but there are others styled with glass, pewter, porcelain and silver, for example.
In the United States, the decorative German steins are quite popular, but, as collectables, so are the annual editions from breweries, especially Anheuser-Busch. 
            So, what are the most expensive beer steins? There’s one for sale online right now for $5495.00 and another for $6000.00.  Both are German and highly decorative.  Because steins have been around for centuries, we actually don’t know what’s the most expensive one ever.  These days, most range from $50 to $5000.  Obviously, hand-painted and carved steins are more valuable than those mass-produced. 
Aside from the popular brewery mugs, themes are popular for collectors: military, wedding, nautical, royalty/castles, occupations and others.
Germany is not the only country with special tankards.  There are popular Nordic ones as well as those from Poland, Austria, Hungary, etc.
Whether you drink from them or not, beer steins make beautiful displays.
 
[Sources: Wikipedia, Oktoberfesthaus, Renegade Brewing, German Stein]

Beer Stein or Beer Mug?