FORVM`s Classical Numismatics Discussion Board

Numismatic and History Discussions => Medieval, Islamic and Crusader Coins => Topic started by: Follibus Fanaticus on July 27, 2005, 07:07:51 pm



Title: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on July 27, 2005, 07:07:51 pm
ON NAILING A SCARCE COIN

I finally obtained a grosso of Boniface VIII [1292–1303], the 192nd pope out of 364 from M&M’s recent Auction 16 [p. 215, No. 1578] a scarce, not rare coin.  It’s a French feudal coin of an Italian pope from a German [Stuttgart] auction.  Maybe nobody was looking.  Although this is the ugliest coin in my papal collection, Boniface’s coins were the first papal coins issued during the last millennium.  After him, all but four popes issue coins, so this coin kicks off a long series.  I have the following comments:

1. The noted coin photographer, Douglas Dale Smith, commented on my medieval papal coins:  "They’re all right, if you want to collect coke bottle caps."  This is truly an ugly pop cap.

2. Popes from approximately 657 to 983 did issue coins, but these are so scarce and expensive, I have opted out of that earlier broken series.  I remember being offered a Seventh Century papal coin for only $8,500.  It was the size of two grains of wheat – it was a fraction of a Byzantine silver siliqua that had a papal monogram on it.

3. I am tired to death of reading that Boniface’s coins are the first "Holy Year coinage."  It’s just not true.  Dealers who print this nonsense haven’t bothered to read my book on papal coins 1300–1534, which says that in 1300 a new rector arrived to manage Boniface’s papal fief near Avignon.  "The previous rector…had embezzled large funds and fled."   The new rector issued French feudal coins in Boniface’s name to "help secure prosperity."

This factoid comes from p. 254 of "Boniface VIII" by T.S.R. Boase, London: Constable and Co., 1933.

Papal financial scandals are nothing new.

4. Although, over the years, I have seen about twice as many Clement V [1305 – 1314] grossi from the same mint, Pont de Sorgues, today called Sorges, in auctions, Clement always brings more money, because, I think, it is an attractive coin.             

My Boniface, while a true "schon" has this coins usual strike-through problems.  The reverse cross shows through on the obverse and obliterates the bust.

Cheers

Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: lv88 on July 28, 2005, 11:00:20 am
Can you post a photo of this grosso ?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on August 02, 2005, 07:15:20 am
I have no photo equipment for my computer.  So no picture.  Check Muntoni. de Mey, or any catalog that contains French feudal coins

Follibus Fanaticus

P.S. For more on papal, see my soon to be written article on the San Fransisco ANA under shows.


Title: The Life of an Antipope
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on August 03, 2005, 03:13:05 pm
BIOGRAPHY OF THE ANTIPOPE PETER DE LUNA 1342 – 1423
For information on Peter de Luna, also known as the Antipope Benedict XIII read:
Alec Glasfurd.  The Antipope, Peter de Luna, 1342 – 1423, A Study in Obstinacy. Roy Publishers, Inc., New York. 1965, 287 pages, 8 plates.
Peter (Pedro) de Luna [luna = moon] had three "sayings" attached to his reign.
1. The only place he was pope was on the moon.
2. Only the people who live on the moon recognize de Luna as pope.
3. Only the moonstruck (lunatics) think de Luna is pope.
The book is a terrific read.  De Luna took the name Benedict XIII from 1394 to his death in 1422.  The biography does not cover coins.  "All de Luna’s coins were probably struck before October 1398, when the French began a siege of the papal palace at Avignon." [Ryan. p.18.]
It promosts clarity to call this man de Luna, because a pope named Benedict XIII ruled from 1724 to 1730.  The Benedict from the 1700's [Pier Francesco Orsini] issued 81 coin types from three mints [Rome, Bologna & Gubbio].
For coinage details read: 
John Carlin Ryan.   Handbook of Papal Coins, 1268 – 1524.  Washington, D.C. 1989,
87 pages, 6 plates at end of book plus illustrations throughout text.
The book has appeared on e-bay.
Follibus Fanaticus

   


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on August 17, 2005, 09:51:23 am
WRITING ABOUT PAPAL COINS

The papal series breaks into three pieces:

1. Coins from 657[?]/early 700’s till 983.
2. Coins from 1300 to 1870 – The Papal States
3. Coins of Vatican City –1929 to date.

Chamberlains of the Church issued coin for elections, starting in 1268.  Originally, the coins went to pay for the election.  Later, an election coinage was an observed custom.

The dates of the coins help shape any book.  The author is only obliged to give the briefest history of the popes till the mid-Seventh Century.  This avoids a long and controversial period – after all this book is about coins, not religion.

Second, popes do not issue coins during the apogee of papal power, circa 1200.  The civil government at Rome did, however, issue a series from the Senatorial Mint.  They were issued 1184 – 1439.  This mint produced some strange objects, such as the coinage of Cola [Nicholas] Rienzi, who became the subject of a novel and an opera [by Wagner of all people].  Inserting a chapter on the civic coinage of Rome helps close the more than 300-year gap in the coinage of the popes.

I know why the popes stopped coining after 983, but I remain mum.  Buy the book, when it is published.

Now, we get to the break between the end of Pius IX’s reign and mid-reign of Pius XI.  After Pius locked himself in St. Peters and the Vatican Museum-Library complex in 1870, papal coinage ceased till 1929, when the State of the Vatican City emerged.  During that roughly half a century, the Catholic Church evolved from an almost completely medieval institution to one that is more at home in the modern era.

One man did this: Pope Leo XIII [1878 – 1903].  Leo, alas, issued no coins; however, King Victor Emmanuel III of Italy, a coin collector, and almost sole author of Corpus Numorum Italicorum, ran the Rome mint.  It was probably the only institution in Italy over which the "little" King maintained complete control.  Victor Emmanuel III started minting medals  -- huge ones of splendid design – for the popes starting in 1900.

One quote from Leo XIII’s "Rerum Novarum" [Of New Things] tells the story:

"The most important of all these [organizations] are Workingmen’s Associations…It is gratifying to know that there are actually in existence not a few societies of this nature, consisting of either workmen alone…and it is greatly to be desired that they should multiply and become more effective."

In other words, the pope in 1891 urged all Catholic working men to join labor unions.

Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Robert_Brenchley on August 17, 2005, 11:53:43 am
I know why the popes stopped coining after 983, but I remain mum.  Buy the book, when it is published.


Presumably something to do with the acession of Otto III to the throne of the Holy Roman Empire.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on August 18, 2005, 12:40:48 pm
A Letter to Robert:  How the Troops Played with Papal Coins

Dear Robert:

The popes ceased coining about the turn of the last millennium and did not begin again for a full 300 years.  Goodness had nothing to do with it.

Tolkien also says that things that ought to be remembered are forgotten.  I will tell a forgotten tale in the opening of the book.  Reference:  The Republic of St. Peter, The Birth of the Papal State, 680 – 825 by Thomas F.X. Noble, University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia, 1984, 2d printing {paper} 1991.

The story tells how a piece of the Byzantine Empire, about the size of New Jersey, succeeded from the empire and gradually formed its own government.  Venice did the same thing.  In Venice, an electorate elected Dodges; in Rome, a very similar electorate elected popes.  The Romans called their enterprise "The Republic of St. Peter" on all documents and official correspondence, such as letters surviving in the files from the Frankish kings.

I must backtrack to Gregory I [590-604], because of coins.  We know that Gregory ran all Byzantine mints in Italy.  Gregory was loyal to his emperors, but subsequent popes had ever dividing loyalties – and they controlled the money.  "Follow the money."  Gregory I also managed road repair, water supply, public health, and food welfare for his lords emperors, and they endowed him with the proper titles and authority to manage these civic functions.

Although election coins do not appear till 1268, elections were always held.   After Gregory, a group began to tamper and change election rules.  Who were they?  They were officers of the Byzantine army who had the great misfortune to be assigned to Italy.  They and their sons played extremely interesting games.

Coinage is just one of the games.


Cheers

Follibus Fanaticus



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on August 19, 2005, 11:47:37 pm
Note:  this composition appeared on the PAPAL ELECTION site created by FF, who will delete the site, because the election is over.  The composition appears on this site because it has a numismatic interest that involves more than the election of 2005.

FF

DATES ARRIVE ON PAPAL ELECTION COINS

NEVER, never ask a catholic questions about Catholicism.  They delight in giving fabulous, meaning derived from a fable, answers.  This is almost a sport.  For example, take the usual answer to questions on the meaning of IHS that one finds panted, carved, engraved and set in mosaic all over churches, crosses, and every conceivable object in a church.  The fabulous answer is:  "Oh, that means I have suffered."  You coin experts, Roman coin experts, should be able to figure out that IHS is an abbreviation in Latin for "Jesus," much like the 3-letter abbreviations COS, IMP and TRP you find on many Roman coins.

Such fabulous answers surround the first dated SEDE VACANTE, or election, coins.  The date on my example of this coin is ISSV.  I've read it means "Let it be issued" many times.  One catalog informs me it's a secret word that will turn silver into gold, provided pronounced correctly.

Sorry, it's just a date.  Here's the story.

Marcellus II, 221st pope, was elected on April 9 and died on May 1, the shortest reign of the last millennium, but not in history.  That honor goes to Stephen II, 92nd pope, who lasted about 48 hours between March 23/25, 752.

The chamberlain, Giudo Ascanio Sforza, was probably frantic, because it was his job to set up the totally unexpected election.  At the last minute, he probably ordered the mint to date the second issue of coins for that year.  The mint did not have number punches, so the staff improvised.  The year was 1555.  ISSS would have sounded like the greeting given to a bad actor or politician, so they changed the final S to a Roman numeral 5, a V.

So we get the ISSV variety of 1555 election coins.  This coin is not in Berman’s "Papal Coins."  The huge 4 volume Muntoni book says it is unique, but it’s not.  I have one, a friend of mine has one has one, and I’ve seen several in auctions.

What happened in 1978?  Coins for the election of John Paul I [Berman 3499] read MCMLXXVIII.  Coins for the election of John Paul II read SEPTEMBER MCMLXXVIII.

Now I’ve shot myself in the foot again.  Every collector of "Dates on Coins" will just "gotta" have an ISSV sede vacante issue.

Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on August 19, 2005, 11:59:06 pm
IMPORT FROM ELECTION COINS -- Doomed to deletion

HOW MANY POPES?

I say John Paul II was pope No. 263.  Some will disagree, but here’s my logic and my source.

When I began collecting papal coins, I wanted to know how many men have been pope, bishop of Rome if you will.  I needed a sane way to number the coins in my collection.  The succession presents a bewildering list of names: John Paul II succeded John Paul I, who succeded Paul VI, who succeded John XXIII [the second man to use the number], who succeded Pius XII, who succeded Pius XI.  I could give the first pope to issue a coin the number 1, but even which pope first issued a coin remains a numismatic controversy.

So, I set out to number my coins in regnal order of popes, giving Peter the number 1, even though the first  64 or so popes had nothing to do with coinage.  I knew I was in trouble when "The Economist"  tagged John Paul II with an impossible numeral, something like 150th pope.  "Time" had another number; other publications promulgated similar fantisy numbers.

I asked a priest, who informed that the number of popes might be a "Mystery of Faith."  After exploring antipopes and intracies in numerology, he might be right.

I found Walsh’s 6-page table, He lined up the popes in chronological order, tagged them with an ethnic, such as Italian, Roman, African, French, German, Spanish, English, Flemish, or Polish, gave year of birth [if known], and dates of election and of death, resignation or deposition.  Most critically, for me, the left-hand column gave numbers with Peter as No, 1 and John Paul II as 263.

Michael Walsh.  "The Popes from Peter to John Paul II."  St. Martin’s Press, New York, 1980, 256 pp.  His revelation fills pages called "Chronology of the Popes," pp. 248 – 253.

The book proves to be a hop, skip and a jump history.  Walsh hits the high points, bad for a coin collector.  Popes with interesting coins often prove to have dull or unimportant reigns, which Walsh skips.  Popes with highly historical reigns often have dull or, worse, no coins.  At least 109 popes out of the 236 strike coins.

Walsh lists 35 men who claimed the papacy but are called antipopes by the Catholic Church.  The earliest was St. Hippolytus (217-235) – yes he was canonized as a martyr; the most recent, Amadeus VIII, Count of Savoy, who called himself Pope Felix V (1439-49).  Amadeus issued coins as count but none as Felix V.

I do collect coins of the antipopes who issue coins, but I call the men by their birth names.  I list one coin as "Baldasare Cosa, the antipope John XXIII (1410-1515).  Cossa’s employment may be listed as pirate and lawyer, before he found religion more profitable than his previous occupations.

While some will take exception to Walsh’s expulsion of the antipopes from his numerical order, several popes he does number cause controversy.  Prime example: Pope 92, Stephen II [March 23-25, 752].  Poor Stephen dropped dead after a less than 40 hour reign, although one of my sources generously states that his reign may have lasted as long as 96 hours.  No coins!  He was considered a pope from the 1500’s till 1960, when he was dropped from the Vatican’s official list.

Leo VIII stands as the Grover Cleveland of the papacy; he got to be pope twice [963-967, 964-965].  He only gets one number, No. 132.  Pope 133, Benedict V ruled May 22 – June 23, 964.  Leo and Benedict both have coins.

I see a solution.  If I ever throw Stephen II out of the list, I’ll give Leo VIII two numbers, so John Paul II is still the 263d pope.  More importantly, it will preserve my numbers for the popes from 1300 till now.

 Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Robert_Brenchley on August 20, 2005, 09:59:44 am
I set out to number my coins in regnal order of popes, giving Peter the number 1, even though the first  64 or so popes had nothing to do with coinage.

Hmm, I'll defy anyone to prove either  that Peter was ever in Rome, or that anyone was called an episkopos during his lifetime! He was certainly one of the Gang of Three who ran the Jerusalem church for a while in the years after the Crucifixion; Paul calles them 'pillars' and is a little sarcastic, but had to do what they said anyway. Then he seems to fade out, with James becoming the dominant figure in Jerusalem. There are some indications that Peter may have been a little lax regarding the Law for his taste. He also crops up as an apostolos, or travelling evangelist and church-planter, in a similar role to Paul, but working among observant Jews, while Paul crossed the line and accepted Gentiles as equal members of the community. So this may well have been his main role after being ousted from the top three. He must have had a leading role in the Jesus movement before the Crucifixion, but the accounts we have are so partisan it's probably impossible to be clear about the details. Beyond that, we can't really bve sure about anything.

So how does Peter come to be regarded as the first Pope? There's no direct evidence, but in the second half of the 2nd Century, an organised network of churches (the 'Orthodox' or 'Catholic' churches) were attempting to establish themselves as the bearers of the 'proper' version of Christianity, as opposed to everyone else. This had been building up for a couple of generations; they had already gone a long way towards reinterpreting the Scriptures in ways acceptable to the Graeco-Roman world, they had produced a series of apologists sho made it their task to try to convince the Roman authorities that they were OK, and they were strting to produce some major thinkers. Clearly, they were gaining confidence.

They now set out to do two things; to convince everyone that, firstly, only their churches had the right message, and secondly, only Christian writings they approved were to be relied on. They used the same basic technique with both. Only books associated with apostles (in the later sense, including the Twelve) or people close to them were to be trusted, even if the association had to be invented. It's at this time that we find writers claiming that Mark was writing down what he heard from Peter, and successive writers make the association between the two ever closer. In fact, Mark's portrait of Peter is so damning that it's really impossible to believe that there was any link between the two at all. At the same time, churches were only 'proper' if they could trace the origins of their leadership back to the Apostles; this is the origin of the 'Apostolic Succession'. Rome was the first city of the empire, who better to claim as its founder than the supposed leader of the Apostles? The Petrine foundation is about early church politics, not history!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on August 24, 2005, 11:04:53 am
Repost of Response on Pope Joan Discussion

I repost my research on "Pope Joan" for the education and amusement of those interested in papal coins

Repost starts
-------------------------------

Gobble, gobble.  Only a turkey that does not read would bring up the old monks’ joke about Pope Joan.  Read "The oxford Dictionary of Popes" by J.D.N. Kelly [He ain’t Catholic.] Oxford University Press, oxford, 1986.  Kelly treats the legend in an appendix, pp. 329-330.  Kelly says:  "The story first appears between 1240 and 1250…The story, often embellished with fantastic details, was accepted in Catholic circles without question for centuries [Get that!]…It [the story] scarcely needs painstaking refutation today, for not only is there no evidence of a female pope at any of the dates suggested for her reign, but the known facts of the respective periods make it impossible to fit one in…Its [the story’s] kernel is generally taken to be an ancient Roman folk tale.

When in doubt of a fact about the papacy, I always read Kelly, who accompanied the Archbishop of Canterbury (Michael Ramsey) on his visit to Pope Paul VI.  I have behind me in my bookcase several histories of the popes by Roman Catholics.  I fear to say they contain grosser myths than the one about a female pope.

Now, on Pope Joan—I suggest we work together on a set of medals depicting the events of her legendary reign.  The Franklin Mint will issue these in gold, silver and copper.  The set will fit right in with other Franklin Mint products.

Follibus Fanaticus



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on September 08, 2005, 03:10:03 pm
A GOOD, GOOD, GOOD BOOK

One eternal papal problem -- they issue from 42 mints!  Three are in today's France, so they get placed in French, not Italian, books about coins.  A good book covers many of the issues of the 39 mints now in Italy.  All those mints, mostly in an area the size of the State of New Jersey.  The soft hearted fathers let every hill town crank out a penney and a nickel to foster local pride.

That good book is:  Biaggi, Elio.  MOMETE E ZECCHE MEDIEVALI ITALIANE dal sec. VIII al sec. XV {Medieval Italian Coins and Mints from the 8th Through the 15th Centuries.}  Montenegro sas Ediziioni Numismatiche di Eupremio Montenegto, Turino [Turin], Italy, 1992, 526 pages.

Mints are alphabetical from Acqui [the one in Peidmont] through Volterra.  Names and dates are given for rulers.  It's easy to use, even if you understand no Italian.  Prices are given for Fine, Very Fine and Extra Fine.  Prices are in lire -- good luck on translation into Euros, then dollars.  But the price structure for each coin is there.  A Fine costs X; a Very fine costs 1.5 or 2 times X; an XF costs 3 to 10 times X.

I did find an omission from this good book, known as Muntoni 38/39 or Ryan 14.  Pius II [1458-64] showed up in Mantua, which he did not own, with his chamberlan, one Rodrigo Borgia [1431-1503], who became Pope Alexancer VI in 1492.  Rodrigo cranked out an issue in gold duckets, whose reverses read ...D-[IE]TE MANTOVA [The Meeting at Mantua].  The local power, one Ludocivo III Gonzaga [1444-78], B. Numbers 1137-1149, had absolutely no objections to an extra gold coinage in his town.  Berman lists it as B. 379, price $4,500.  Ryan No. 14 goes for $2,000 in Fine and $4,500 in Very Fine.  Allen, you coppied John Carlin's estimate!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on September 16, 2005, 05:56:43 pm
FORGERY:  The Fear of Collectors

As I write my book on papal coins, I realize the greatness of Philip Grierson and Mark Blackburn’s great work, "Medieval European Coinage…1. The Early Middle Ages 5th – 1-th Centuries."  Cambridge University Press published it in 1986, all 673 pages of it.

How does it affect my work?  Grierson's citation of counterfeits demands that I revise which popes issued, whom they issued with, and the very flow of the papal coinage.  Greirson tells who counterfeited what, when and sometimes-hilarious mistakes made.  When I integrate his findings into a tabular form, it may cause distress.  Collectors, who paid high prices for them, will certainly stone me.  [One collector paid a high price for an object marked "counterfeit."]

For example, of the antipope Christopher [903-904], Grierson states [p. 261] "Only forgeries known."  So, poor Christopher must be banished from numismatics, but not history.  He will possibly rate a footnote, but no mention in my text.  No Muntoni No 1 [Vol. 4, p. 143] nor CNI 1 for him.  Berman [p. 41] notes:  "It is now believed that all coins of Antipope Christopher (903-904) are counterfeit."  Good man Allen.

Stories of counterfeiting from any branch of collecting are always instructive.  Here’s a recent "Lulu" I heard about the King of Hobbies, collecting rare paintings.

The assistant curator entered the room of a great establishment and saw the benefactor and her friends, and they unveiled her gifts before the staff.   All gasped at the beauty. Lastly, an 18- by 15-inch masterpiece appeared.  All gasped doubly, especially the assistant curator.  He knew it was a fake.

Patrons are not to be offended.  The assistant curator paced the painting under perpetual "restoration."  It hung only when the benefactor visited.  Time passes.  The old man had to retire.  On the last hour of his last day, he entered the office of the head of the institution and ‘fessed up.

"How do you know for certain that the painting is a forgery," roared the great head, an expert with much standing.

"Because, in 1924, in Paris, I painted it myself," squeaked the retiree.

"Well then," quoth the head, "Leave this building forever, and take your painting with you."  The retiree did so, and the painting hung above his mantle till he died at a great age.

I know the name of the painting, the supposed artist and the real artist.  If it shows up in a  art catalog, I’m going to have some real fun.

Cheers,

Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on October 05, 2005, 04:01:54 am
THE COIN I DESIRE MOST

It pays to advertise.  Let’s not be shy.  It is:

Papal States.  Urban VI [1378-1389].  Avignon Mint. Billon denaro [also called a half-gros].  Miter.  VRB’ PP SESTVS.  Rev. Patent cross. S[AN]T’ PET E P[AV]L.

Serifini 8.  Muntoni 1.  On reverse, crossed keys in quadrants two and three.

Muntoni 2, not in Serifini.  On reverse, crossed keys in quadrents one and four.

Ryan 201:1.  Berman 221.  Ryan and Berman elide the two issues into one coin.

De May. 49.  Lists Muntoni 1 and 2 as one coin.

De May then finds a real kicker.  He lists a half-gros that shows: Seated pope blessing.  VRBANVS PP SEXTVS.  Rev.  Canton cross, crossed keys in [two] cantons.  Not illustrated.  Ryan lists as 201:2; Rare.  Berman lists as 220; no comment or price.  He asks:  "Does it exist."  Yes, Allen, it exists.  I’VE SEEN IT, AND IT’S REAL!

The half gross also lies buried in two old books.  Poey D’Avant [1858] lists it in his vol. 2, page 353 as Number 4191.  No line drawing.   Cinagli [1848] lists it as Urbano VI, Number 9, on page 35.  He calls it a grosso, Rarity 3, and found examples in 3 out of 7 collections quoted.  CNI does not list it, because that work does not cover the three Papal French mints.  Serafini does not list because the Vatican collection did not have one when he published.  Serafini is sort of the BMC of papal coinage.

Because the half-gros is impossibly rare, I desire the denaro.

The popes have issued coins that art masterpieces.  Coins that commemorate events – such as a coin commemorating the fall of Communism, Berman 3572.  Coins with saints.  Coins with buildings, roads, harbors!  Why this little coin?  I am a history oriented coin collector.

One must travel back to the events that began on April 7, 1378.  Eleven days after the death of Gregory XI, the cardinals entered the first conclave at Rome in 75 years. While it was a disorderly election, it was far less so than the affair in 1214 at Carpentras, France, when the French nobles broke in and murdered all the cardinals’ servants.  The terrified cardinals refused to meet again till 1216, when they elected a French commoner to spite the nobles.  N o rules of order existed governing papal elections.

The crowd at Rome wanted a Roman.  The next day the cardinals elected Bishop Bartolomo Pignatelli [1318-1389], who was chamberlain of the Church.  He ran the mints at Rome and Avignon as part of his job.  He was from Naples.  Just to make sure, the cardinals held a second unanimous vote.  The new pope called himself Urban VIII.

Urban alarmed the cardinals.  On September 20, 1378, 20 cardinals at Fondi elected Robert of Geneva [1342-1394], a "cousin" of the King of France, as their pope.  He called himself Clement VII.  "They crowned him with the papal tiara and all the regalia.  The [new] Camerlingo, with considerable foresight, had stolen them from Urban’s treasury." [Glasfund.  The Antipope.   P. 85.].

So began the Great Western Schism.  French historians often write that Urban was never recognized at Avignon as pope.  The extant half-gros and denaro deep six that assertion.

HERE ARE TWO COINS THAT ARE MEANINGFUL HISTORICAL DOCUMENTS.

That’s why I want the commoner of the two.

Follibus Fanaticus.



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on October 11, 2005, 09:51:14 am
THE 7 MOST IMPORTANT REFERENCES FOR PAPAL COINS

THE 7 MOST IMPORTANT REFERENCE WORKS FOR COLLECTING AND RESEARCHING PAPAL COINS, IN MY OPPINION, ARE

1. J.D.N. Kelly.   The Oxford Dictionary of Popes.  New York, Oxford University Press, 1986. 347 pages.

Good bios of the 264 popes, 30 or so anti-popes, and one nonexistent female pope.  Kelly is head and shoulders above all other papal bios.  For example, Richard P. McBrien treats us to the legend the Alexander VI died from poison.  Alexander and his son, Cesare, exhibited classic malaria symptoms.  The poison story ranks with Pope Joan as fiction.  So much for "Lives of the Popes," by the author of "Catholicism."

2. Francesco Muntoni.  Le Monete dei Papi e degli Stati Pontifici. [The Coins of the Popes and of the Papal States.] P&P Santamaria, Rome, 1972-1973, 4 [huge] volumes.  Forni has reprinted it.

CNI omits the three French mints.  Serifini covers only the [large] Vatican collection.  Muntoni covers everything, except the earliest coins, which were unknown in 1972/73.

3. Michael D. O’Hara.  "A Find of Byzantine Silver from the Rome Mint for the Period A.D. 641 – 752."  Swiss Numismatic Review.  Vol. 64, 1965, pp. 105 140,  22 plates.  A reprint exists.

Covers the earliest papal coins.

4. Allen G. Berman.  Papal Coins.  Attic Books, Ltd.  South Salem, N.Y., 1991, 255 pages, 77 pages of plates.

If you are going to price a papal coin, you need this book.  The price structure is solid.  The going rate today is 2B, 2.5 B or 0.50 B. B is the Berman price.  Not all papal coins are in this book.  Finding a "not in Berman" is my own greatest coin story.

5. Thomas F.X. Noble.  The Republic of St. Peter, The Birth of the Papal State, 680 – 825.  The University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia, 1984, 376 pages.

How did the popes, bishops, become civil rulers?  Was there really such a state as the Republic of St. Peter?  Mr. Noble tells you how this show got started.

6. Philip Grierson and Mark Blackburn.  Medieval European Coinage, 1, The Early Middle Ages (5th-10rh Centuries).  Cambridge University Press, London, 1991, 674 pages.

You can’t get anywhere with the early papal coinage without this book.  Just the explanation of counterfeits changes Muntoni’s 1972-74 picture.

7. Aeneas Sylvius Piccolomini [Pius II].  Memoirs of a Renaissance Pope."  Trans., Florence A Gragg.  G.P. Putnam’s Sons, New York, 1959, 381 pages.

A completely delightful book.  Pius is funny.  That’s probably why I like him so much.

Cheers,

Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on October 17, 2005, 11:45:15 am
I repost Robert Brenchley's review of Ryan's "Handbook of Papal Coins 1268 - 1534."

Cheers,

Follibus Fanaticus

Review starts
--------------------------------------
Robert_Brenchley
Comitia Curiata II
Procurator Caesaris
Caesar

Honi soit qui mal y pense.

Papal coin book
« on: October 15, 2005, 03:22:30 pm »   
------------------------------------------------------------------------
I promised Follibus Fanaticus that I'd do this review for him weeks ago, and I post it now with apologies; it's been a difficult few weeks!
A HANDBOOK OF PAPAL COINS
‘FOLLIBUS FANATICUS’
1989
   This is one of the very few books covering Papal coinage, and the only accessible one in English. The catalogue runs from the beginning of the Medieval Papal coinage in 1268 to the death of Clement VII in 1534. Papal coinage was also minted from 781 to 983, and it is to be hoped that these can be inserted in a future edition. The author left them out because the pricing structure was unclear to him at the time of publication, due to their rarity, but they are dealt with briefly in the introduction.
   A brief history of Papal coinage occupies the first half of the book, dealing with the Popes and the numerous changes in their coinage. Reading it makes me want to go out and buy a history of the Popes; what rivalries were there within the ‘Long Conclave of 1268-71 which rendered them unable to elect a Pope until threatened with starvation, what were the confused politics of the Great Schism really about, why did Pedro de Luna sling on to an empty title until it was said that only people on the moon thought he was Pope, and why was the antipope John XXIII ‘so bad that no Pope took the name John for over half a millennium’?
Obviously, it is not the task  of a coin catalogue to replace the history books, but no coinage can be fully appreciated without a detailed history of the period it covers. A 35-page catalogue follows, covering the issues in detail. Coins are illustrated with line drawings and seven pages of photos, but there are too few of these; the ideal catalogue would have every issue illustrated, but the economics of publishing too often prevent this.
   Overall, the book is well worth getting; the catalogue is clearly laid out and accessible; the history gives an adequate outline of a complex subject; it may ultimately be confusing and unsatisfactory, but that is the nature of brief historical introductions. If you’re interested in the subject, buy both Follibus’ book and a good history of the Popes.
   To get the book, Follibus asks that you should write a public letter on the Forum expressing a desire ‘to read or burn this book’. He asks only that you should send appropriate postage; as a guide to international rates, it cost almost $8 to send a copy to the UK.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Robert Brenchley
My gallery: http://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/index.php?cat=10405
Fiat justitia ruat caelum




Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on November 11, 2005, 08:13:32 pm
THE SWISS GUARD

The Swill Guard a new organization will meet on November 20 at noon for two hours just before the Ancient Club meets at John Ryan’s house in Mt. Pleasant, a neighborhood near the zoo in Washington, D.C.  At the request of a potential member, this organization will never be called a coin club.  Follibus Fanaticus resolved the difficulty with the following rules of order.

1. Because we are named after a military organization, all communications will be written in "garble-de-gook," the official language of all military organizations.  Only members will know the true meaning of messages.  For example, coins will always be called "objects."  Medals and bulla will be termed "other objects."

2. The Swiss Guard never has meetings.  It holds exercises.

3. They never look at coins.  They "examine objectives or other objectives."

4. The following message will be the only one sent in clear English.  An official version follows the message.

The Swiss Guard will meet at noon, November 20 at John Ryan’s house.  It will proceed a regular meeting of the Washington Ancient Coin Club.  Persons wishing an invitation or directions may e-mail jryan33@earthlink.net.  Follibus Fanaticus will respond with directions and instructions.  Attendees may bring up to 30 papal coins to show to the meeting.  We limited the number because some members do not want to bring many coins and because the meeting must end at about 2 pm.  The meeting will proceed thusly.  Armed with beer or a soft drink, members will sit around a table and introduce themselves.  Members may use a nom-de-plume at the meeting.  Members may buy and sell as many coins, papal or otherwise, as they wish.  At around 12:30 the great showing will begin.  The show will start with coins of Sede Vacante 1268 – 1271.  These will known as set 182/183.  Next, the narrator will call for coins of Boniface VIII, known as series 192.  As many as two series 192 coins may show up, because two of the already invited own them.  We may or may not see Sede Vacante 2005 [series 263/264] or a coin of the present pope [series 264].  The meeting will end promptly at about 1:45.

OFFICIAL VERSION {Written in Gook, the Guard’s official language}

The Swiss Guard will hold its first exercise at 12:000 hours, 11/20/05 within the calling range of the baboons [They sound like dogs.].  Instructions and orders are available at jryan33@earthlink.net. Troops may being up to thirty objects for exercise examination.  The exercise will be terminated at 13:45.  The first order is for a roll-call.  Members may call themselves by any name.  Objects and other objects may be bought and sold.  An inspection of objects from series 182/183 to series 264 will take place.




Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on November 12, 2005, 08:39:56 am
NOTE NEW YORKERS [and New Jerseyiates too]

Some grouse that the Swiss Guard will meet in Washington, D.C., the Capitol of the United States, not New York, the Capitol of the World.  Follibus Fanaticus says "Cheer up," it is better than it seems.

Members of the Washington Club have accustomed themselves to traveling vast distances, by New York standards, to seek ancient coins.  They have ventured to Quarryville and  Lancaster, Pa., and to the distant Shenendoah Valley just last month.  They even saw the river, famed in songs and stories.  A jump to Baltimore, just 40 miles up the road, is a mere nothing.  Once, long ago, the club visited rebel Richmond, once the seat of a rival government.  This is 150 miles, miles mind you, south of Washington.

Those who dwell in New York and surroundings may:

1. Board an Amtrak train labeled Washington, D.C., for the price of a really cheap coin – round trip.

2. Get off at Union Station, Washington, D.C.

3. Walk through the station and, without going outside; find Metro, the Washington subway.  Only the "red" line runs under Union Station.  Board the "Red" line.  It’s $1.35.  Buy a round trip ticket to save time on the return.

4. Ride to the Cleveland Park station, "station stop" to the idiots who run Metro.  There is only one way out of this station, so you probably will not get lost.  You may take either of the two final escalators to arrive either on the east or west side of Connecticut Avenue.

5. Catch a taxi for the final mile.  It’s a humdinger.  You first go down, then up, the second highest hill in Washington, D.C.  Years ago, John Ryan bought a house atop the hill.  He has a 3 to 5 mile view depending on the weather.  The view alone is worth the trip.

6. Grab some food and a drink.  You will find good friends.

7. Coin widows are welcome.  For them we have a tour of the Nation’s second smallest National Park.  Lamont Park consists of two park benches and a street light.  It has a fascinating history involving money, guile and power.  See this wonder of nature and government.  Also, the Ingles House usually opens its doors to all visitors.  It was the 1774 home of Mr. Ingles, a banker who lent money to George Washington.  The 1774 plantation house is encased in a stucco Venetian mansion glued to it in about 1885.  It is fully restored and now serves as the offices for an old age home.

Do you or your wife watch Antique Road Show.  You are gonna love this place.  All the 188’s furniture is on site.  I hear that back in the 1880’s they burnt all that old junk from the 1770’s.

Cheers,

FF


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on November 12, 2005, 08:45:57 am
I have roused the anger of Peter Spellcheck, who I hear recently got married.  I warn him that response 19 is an unedited version of the letter.  Read it under "The Swiss Guard" for the final versionb, Peter.  Congrats!

FF


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on November 15, 2005, 09:38:49 am
 THE SWISS GUARD will hold exercises.  Begin promptly at 12.oo and end 13:45, Nov 20, 2005.  Objects will be displayed.  Some will be sold  -- be early.

 


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on November 21, 2005, 09:20:14 pm
SWISS GUARD MET


      
Re: The Swiss Guard
« Reply #1 on: Today at 11:15:00 AM »      
------------------------------------------------------------------------
About a dozen or so Swiss Guards held their first exercise yesterday at the Mt. Pleasant house of Captain FitzBattleaxe.  Refreshments included wine wine, sherry, ginger ale, cola, and Gatorade.  Humus, salsa dip, cookies, and other treats abounded.  Objects observed went from 182/183 to 263.  An other object of 256, who did not have objects, was displayed for show only.  A game of Bonkers Tarot was played with a Rider deck.  Companies Alpha and Delta both received 20 cards.  Alpha was strong 192 - 241; Delta from 241 - 263.  Winner of agone will be declared at a later time.  Rules for televised card games do not apply.  FF.
The agone began about 1 pm.  Members of a fellow organization observed the game avidly, forgetting the original purpose of the overall exercise.  Audible gasps were heard as many objects came to light.  The operation ended about 3:30.  A roster was kept.  Several participants voiced favor of a meeting in December.



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on December 03, 2005, 03:31:38 pm
SUBJECT:  Agone report.
Date of Agone.  11/20/05
Location of Exercise: Mt. Pleasant
Number of Players: Over a dozen.

Unit members met for exercise around a round table. H Company arrived after completion.  This unit was strong in 258/263.  You may be the greatest competitor in the world, but if you’re not there, you’re no damn good.  [Old military saying]  This left the field open to Delta Company, which swept these six contests.

A 78 card Rider Tarot deck was shuffled and placed centered on the table.  Contenders exhibited an object.  The best entry gained the contender one card.  The first contest featured 182/183.  Delta Force brought the only object in that category, thus winning the hand.

Categories appeared in the following order: 182/183; 192 to 204; 258 to 263 [No one had a 263/264 or a 264.]; 3 antipapal objects; 205 to 218; [a pause at the end of Ryan’s Handbook]; 249 to 254 [from the beginning of machine struck objects to the end of the issues]; 234 to 248; and 219 to 234.  Some brought the sole object for a number, thus won the hand.  A Company offered a stunning object of 208, only to be trumped by a finer object by Delta Force.  On the object’s back, the face of St. 1, riding in a boat, was fully visible.  The exhibited object was in many ways superior to No. 9 in the M Book.  It stood alongside No. 330 in the B Book.

Contest results show that A Company won with 21 cards; Delta took out 20, from of a possible 78.  A drew better cards.  Delta total added to 267; Delta’s to 185.  Numbers on the cards, major and lesser, were used.  Ace counted as 1; page as 11; knight as 12; queen as 13; and king as 14.

Most troops had a few nice coins and one or two spectacular beauties.  Gamma Group exhibited a new object, 20 percent than the largest usual silver object of the United States that caused gasps.  Petrus, dicitur non pontifex, was pleased to get a card for that object.  Many won hands with a modest coin from a number that otherwise not show in the agone.

Follibus Fanaticus




Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on January 05, 2006, 01:58:53 am
SWISS GUARD MEETING: JANUARY 22

The Swiss Guard will meet at the Mount Pleasant location on JANUARY 22 at 14.00.  Members will be able to:

1. Display objects gathered at the New York International.
2. Buy 1 or more of 20 objects promised for the meeting by an object dealer.
3. Show and tell 20 objects from personal gatherings of objects.  We will use the Tarot Card Game, because some members found this a fun way to reward the goodness of an object.

Please respond by e-mail to Follibus Fanaticus, so Captain fitzbattleaxe can plan snacks.

Those interested in joining the Swiss Guard or just having an afternoon of talk about papal objects and other objects, please drop an e-mail to Follibus Fanaticus or Captain FitzBattleaxe.

Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on January 18, 2006, 01:16:24 pm
PHILIP GRIERSON DIES AT 95

I met Philip Grierson only a few times.  Once he introduced himself to me in a Virginia coin store.  He also hosted an annual meeting for years of the Washington Ancient Numismatic Society [ANSW] at Dumbarton Oaks in Georgetown.  I talked to him longest at a meeting of the ANSW at a private home in Virginia, and then the joke was almost on me.

Because I collect papal coins from 1300 on, the ANSW consuls figured I knew all about medieval coinage, and so I was volunteered for an hour lecture on the topic.  I prepared an outline and hand drawn flip charts.  I arrived for the 2 p.m. social hour, grabbed a beer and began to set up.

Someone steered me to an easy chair, pointed to the occupant and blurted with glee, "Oh John, do you know Phil Grierson."  There sat the published author of two huge volumes on the medieval coinage with eleven more in preparation at Cambridge University – the world’s reigning expert on the subject.  He said two things to me before the lecture: (1) Call him by his first name.  (2) He was looking forward to the lecture.  He had read my book, and I knew he disagreed with certain items in it.

My lecture was the "quick and dirty" Army type: Tell them what you’re going to tell them.  Tell them.  Tell them what you told them.  The talk also included a guessing game: Name That Mint.  The medievals usually spelled out the mint name in Latin.  {Aurelianensis = Orleans, France; Emerita = Merida, Spain; Nantivnagl [sic, on one coin at least] = Nantes, France; Turones = Tours;}  Medieval mints can also be depended on to slaughter the spelling.  I could see that Grierson enjoyed the game.

Afterwards he told me that the lecture was blunt, to the point, used good jokes and that he enjoyed it.  Then I asked him something I really wanted to know: Why did the popes stop making coins in the late 900’s.  He just knew. He told me.  I had not found the answer in tons of research.  He noted that he did not cover the topic in his first volume on medieval coins.  I told him the "secret" was safe until I published.

He seemed a happy man filled with wit.  He was doing what he liked with his life – probably the secret of his longevity.  He could get very cross, but only about numismatic subjects.  He disagreed with one and a half pages of my book.  I told him that would be covered in the book I am working on.

I did keep track of his progress through the Medieval Numismatic gossip network.  I hear several volumes of the work are in proof.  I do not vouch for the accuracy of that information.

I think he led a fruitful and productive life.  Read his work.  The section on papal coins in "Medieval European Coinage 1" is a delight.  The wit and good humor shine through.
                                                   
Follibus Fanaticus                        


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on January 25, 2006, 01:28:02 pm
THE EIGHTH MOST USEFUL PAPAL REFERENCE

SEE:  The Papal Corner, Reply 14, for a review of references 1 through 7.

I nominate for book eight of useful books:

Michael Walsh.  "An Illustrated History of the Popes, Saint Peter to John Paul II."  St. Martin’s Press, New York.  [Great Britain: Redwood Burn, Ltd.]. 1980, 256 pages.

I call it: the Housekeeping Book.

"Illustrated" was a well-chosen word for this volume, because the pictures are well chosen, and many are in color.  Here we see the "tombstone" of Pope Pontianus [230-235], contemporary portraits of Leo III, Charlemagne, Nicholas I [858-867], Innocent III [1198-1216], John Huss [1369-1415] and Martin Luther [1472-1553].  The Luther is the from-life Lucas Cranach likeness painted in 1535. We get architectural drawings of long vanished buildings and ruins.  We also get the "art" renditions of people and events.  For example, we get a Raphael-Romano depiction of Constantine giving Sylvester I [314-335] his [completely fictitious] donation.  The artists set the scene in the old St. Peters, as it was in the early 1500’s, before it was torn down.  While other renditions exist, only this one portrays, to my knowledge, the splendor of the old church.

Yes, the pictures alone are worth the price of the book.  The historical narrative is of the hop, skip and jump type.  All Grant tells us about Gregory XIII [1572-1585], who issued more types of coins than any other pope, is that his reign was long.  I did notice that the popes who issue really great coins tend to get skipped.  This is just a nice coffee-table art book, until you reach pages 248-253.  Here we hit numismatic housekeeping pay dirt.

The six pages contain 6-column tables listing all popes, with the 34 antipopes inserted in proper chronology.  Column 1 is a pope number.  Peter is No. 1; John Paul II is 263. [Read below.]  Antipopes do not get a number.  Column 2 gives the man’s name as pope.  Column 3 gives origin. Black historians might note that Felix I and Gelasius I are described as "African," So one, maybe two, black men have reigned as pope.

Column 4 gives date of birth, where available.  Columns 5 and 6 give dates of election and death or abdication.  Popes who resigned get an asterisk; those who were murdered get a dagger.

This table has saved me countless hours.  First, I check the dates, which are often wrong on a coin holder. Also, some dealers habitually misread the Roman numeral on the coin.  Often, a rare pope comes at a common pope’s price.

Then, the chore of ordering a collection rears its head.  Popes are usually old men.  During the 1500’s 18 individuals reigned as pope, versus 5 monarchs of England and 7 Kings of France.  Consider:  Between 1644 and 1700: Innocent X is followed by Alexander VII then Clements IX and X, Innocent XI, Alexander VIII, and Innocent XII.

You need something to help order this litany of unconnected names.  I use Walsh’s numbers.  So, for Innocents X to XII, I place a small, circled number from 235 to 243 near the top of the coin envelope or flip card.  That way I can order my coins rapidly.  I do not have to worry about Innocent, The Who, succeeding Clement, The What. I am willing to entertain suggestions for a better way to order my coins.

Follibus Fanaticus




Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: lv88 on January 25, 2006, 02:20:45 pm
Well, organizing really depends on the size of your collection, the focus and otherwise. As one with a small collection of mostly kings of Cilician Armenia, and Shaddadid emirs, I just put them into an old Russian album for coins that is about 6x8 with plastic. One of these days I will get a cabinet, that is when I have a lot more expensive coins ...



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on January 26, 2006, 09:55:04 am
ON COIN CABINETS

I found an old shirt display "box" used in men’s stores during the 1950’s.  This tall piece of furniture has shallow drawers for the display of shirts.  I open the cabinet, pull the drawers open and insert trays from coin cases.  [The cases have loosened over time.  The coins fall out of their slots when the case is carried from place to place.]  Now, I can pull out a drawer. Sit it on a table, and look at coins.

Unfortunately, no papal coins are in this case.  They stay in the bank.

Cheers,

Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on January 26, 2006, 10:06:07 am
But if one uses Walsh numbers to order papal coins, where is one to put the anti-popes? Muntoni classifies all anti-popes in a separate section. But this is anchronistic, for it fails to recognize that the anti-popes were often not considered such in their own time and their coinage is as truly papal coinage as that of the worthies who, today, are considered the real popes. I prefer Berman's listing of both popes and anti-popes together in the chronological order of their election and order the pieces in my collection similarly. Indeed, if one uses election dates in a manner similar to that in which Follibus Fanaticus uses Walsh numbers, one can order one's collection just as conveniently and far more respectfully of historical reality.
Well, that was just my two baiocchis worth  ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on January 27, 2006, 11:49:02 am
The Extent of a Collection of Coins of the POPES since 1300

How many coins in a papal collection? 

An off the cuff estimate says 176, but hat depends upon what you wish to collect.

I will not deal with the popes who issued before 983.  Most of these never come on the market. I deal with coins of the 2d millennium and issues of the present pope.  The first coin "of a pope" is registered as 1300.  The election coins of 1268-71 pose a different series, often included with the popes.

First the Popes.

Boniface VIII issued grossi and denari [Yes denari has only one eye in Italian.  In Latin it has two eyes.] from a "French" mint in 1300.  All but four popes from that date on have issued coins.  That’s 68 popes issuing, so we’re up to 68 coins.  Add Five antipopes who issue.  Now we have 73 coins, which includes only one coin of each pope and antipope.  Most papal collectors are not satisfied with that.  The number becomes more complex; meaning we drift into what I call subtotals.

Many collectors want a coat of arms and a portrait for popes who issue them.  For 13 popes up till 1417, the total is easy – zero.  They issue neither portraits nor coats of arms, so the collection gets a subtotal of 13 coins without portraits or coats of arms.  From 1417 till 1471 six popes issue coins that show their own or the family’s coat of arms. So, till 1471, we have a collection of 21 coins.  We’re still at one coin per individual.

Sixtus IV [1471-84] issued the first papal portrait coin.  It has his coat of arms on the reverse, so I suppose you could get away with one coin for him, Gregory XIII, Paul V and other popes who issue such a combination.  Until I spend hours going through the monstrously big Muntoni book [He has a plate for virtually every type!]  I will award Sixtus IV and most other popes two coins.  Exceptions now arise.

Take the following exception – Innocent IX.  When his hometown, Bologna, got the news of the 1591 election of a native son, they rushed out a gold double scudo [doppia] showing Innocent’s coat of arms.  Elected on October 29, he followed the politics of his fan, Philip II of Spain, but not for long.  He died of a cold on December 30.  We subtract one number from the total, because he has no portrait ON A COIN.  Innocent VIII, Pius III and Marcellus II also failed to issue portraits.  Take 4 from portrait total.  That give us [inclusive counting] 54 coats of arms and 50 portraits for 104 coins.  New subtotal: 125 coins 104 plus 21], and I do not know a papal collector satisfied with this number.  They want more.

Collectors seek out the sedibus vacantibus [That’s an ablative plural of sede vacante in Latin.] issues that start in 1268–1271.  Sedibus vacantibus issues show up intermittently in 1378 [?] and 1415-17.  After 1521, issues for sede vacante become fairly regular.  Most show the arms of the Cardinal Chamberlain, Chief Cook and Bottle Washer of the papacy.  His reward for changing light bulbs [and other duties, such as running the mint] is to have his arms on election coins, which he theoretically issues.  Forty-three issues of the sede vacante since 1521 show arms; three previous issues do not.  Total issues for sede vacante:  46.

We have one or two coins for 68 popes…c.125 coins. [Note some inclusive counting.]
We have coins of antipopes…5.
We have 46 issues for sede vacante [elections]  46

 THIS ESTIMATE OF 176 COINS FOR A MINIMUL PAPAL COLLECTION IS SUBJECT TO ERROR.  I MAY WELL REVISE IT AFTER CONSULTING THE MUNTONI TEXT AND PLATES AND OTHER WRITINGS. [For example, Muntoni awards no sede vacante coin for 1549-50; however, Martinori lists two issues – Rome and Bologna.]

Happy to Entertain Other Counts,

Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: lv88 on January 27, 2006, 03:11:37 pm
hmm, and what can be said of papal metal and dinomination in you collection ... Are there many? is the collection heavily weighed along any particular are or is it diversified.

Best,
Levon


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on January 27, 2006, 03:38:55 pm
Follibus Fanaticus implicitly raises the really crunchy question in the preceding post: if one decides to collect papal coins, just how is one to go about doing so? After all, one realizes very early that no one could possibly collect everything, so one needs to make some choices and adopt some criterion to make sure that one is actually building a collection and not just amassing a disorganized accumulation.
Of course each is entirely free to do as he/she chooses, but this is what I decided to do almost at the very beginning of my more than thirty years of papal-coin collecting.
First of all I decided to limit myself to silver coins. I skipped gold, for I am neither a Midas nor a Croesus. Being, nonetheless, a frightful snob, I decided to snub billon and copper.
Then I set myself chronological boundaries. Like FF I also decided to avoid pre-983 pieces; they are available alright (quite a few, for example, appeared in very recent Italian and other European auctions and you see one or two occasionally on CNG), but, all in all, they are not exactly easy to come by. So, I start with the SV 1268-1271. I also decided not to collect all subsequent papal coinage but to stop with the SV of 1740 - this for non-numismatic reasons, my interests in papal history really stops at that time (and esthetically papal coinage really declines, in my humble opinion).
Within the time span 1268-1740 I have sought to acquire the largest silver pieces for each issuing authority (popes and SVs) and mint. In practice this has meant collecting grossi/giuli up to the time of Paul III, testoni from Paul III up to Sixtus V, and piastre from Sixtus V on (filling the gap with testoni for popes and SVs who did not issue piastre). Once I arrive at the piastre, though, I do not limit myself with a representative piece for each issuing authority, but try to collect them all. A very few I still do not have, and probably never will, for when it's a matter of great rarities (such as the piastre for Carpentras) they really are quite something price-wise.
Still, I am very fond of my little collection, and love to bore the pants off people by telling them about it. So please be kind and bear with me.  ::)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on January 28, 2006, 11:18:43 am
RESPONSES TO QUESTIONS

To Response No. 30.

What do I do with the antipopes?

At least 33 men rate the title antipope, starting with Saint [!] Hippolytus [217-235].  Hippolytus was a martyr and his various denunciations of St. Callistus I [16th pope, 222-230]], another martyr are quite blunt.  Hippolytus calls Pope Callistus the modern equivalent of "sleazy real estate dealer."

Only 5 of the 33, or so, antipopes issued coins – all between 1378 and 1429.  The last antipope, Felix V [1439-1449], Amadeus VIII, Count of Savoy, issued as a civil ruler, but never as antipope.  I file my antipopes [I do not own an Alexander V.] between Gregory XII [No. 204], who resigned in 1415, and Martin V [No. 205], elected at Constance in 1417.  Grierson exposed all coins of the antipope Christopher [903-904] as counterfeit.

If one reads contemporary documents, not later French propaganda, one can detect that many thought the Avignon antipopes a big joke.  Robert of Geneva, otherwise known as "The Butcher of Cesena" or the antipope Clement VII, was 2d-cousin to a French king.  The name of his successor in the Avignon line, Peter de Luna, caused the term "lunatic" to enter world languages.  Lunatic meant fool and follower of de Luna.

I do not number my 4 coins of the antipopes.  I believe that a numbering system should be an aid to keeping items in order, not an obsession.  My editor requested a numbering system for the antipopes in my in-progress book.  I told him I thought he was crazy.

To Response 32.

I collect all METALS – gold, silver, billon and copper.  A collector can really economize this way.  For example, a silver grosso of Pius II is a scarce item that costs big bucks.  I know very advanced collectors who do not own one.  HOWEVER, Pius II’s coat of arms appears on the little piccolo, a billon coin.  The copper quattrini of the 16, 17 and 1800’s show papal arms, and these come at a very reasonable price.

Most of my coins are silver.  I own just a few gold coins – I limited myself to one per century.

I avoid MEDALS in all metals, except for Leo’s XI and XIII, Pius X and Benedict XV, the four popes who [since 1300] did not issue coins.  Controversy also surrounds the coin [?] of Benedict XI [1303-1304].  I will probably follow Grierson's opinion, when his volume on northern Italy appears.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on January 28, 2006, 03:08:11 pm
John XXIII is my favourite anti-pope; he sounds like the kind of guy with whom one could have a couple of martinis and he wouldn't be too upset if you walked out on him without asking for his blessing. His Rome mint grosso, the one with the leg, is one of my favourite pieces.
Would it be too much too ask to be anticipated just a clue or two as to Grierson's thoughts on the alleged grosso paparino of Benedict XI?
I have always been intrigued by a little dissonance in Berman n° 167. While the line drawing of the coin has the legend on the obverse:  PP BENEDETV XI, Berman in his description transcribes it: PPBENEDIM.VND. Never being able to get my hands on one, so as to check it for myself...


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on January 28, 2006, 11:31:44 pm
Dear Maffeo:

The antipope John XXIII  -- remember there's a real Pope John XXIII who died in 1963 -- was born in Naples with the name Baldassarre Cossa.  Cossa is the everyday Italian word for "leg," as I broke my leg.  A leg appears in the chief of Cossa's coat of arms, which Cossa probably awarded to himself.

Cossa has 11 Muntoni numbers, and No. 11 is a gold ducat from Bologna that shows his full coat of arms.  Cossa is not the first pope to issue a coin with a coat of arms, because he was never pope.  That honor may go to Martin V [1417-1431], but only maybe.  The coin showing Martin's arms, a crowned column, is marked on the reverse:  ROMA CAPUT MUNDI.  That's the usual mark of the Rome city mint, sometimes called the Mint of the Senate, not the papal mint.  So, the first papal coat of arms on coinage was issued for a pope, not by a pope.

Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on January 29, 2006, 01:22:08 am
Dear Maffeo [2]:

You need a Muntoni to figure out what goes with the "coin" of the Blessed Benedict XI [1303-1304].  He was beatified by Clement XII in 1736.  Feast:  July 7.

The "Blessed" [See below.] has only one Muntoni number, plus a long footnote in Italian.  The footnote summarizes published works that suggest that the Blessed's one coin may be altered examples of Benedict XII [1334 - 1342], Muntoni 4, a denaro paperino from the Montefiascone mint.

Some suggest that clever people altered the XII of the later Benedict's coin to VND on the Blessed's coin.  VND means undicem, the Latin word for eleven.  I do not know what Grierson's book will say on the subject.

Note on Titles.

Books on Heraldry will define what king, duke, earl and other lifetime titles mean.  Larger works will go into the three tites after death.  The Romans started the practice by awarding the title Divus or Diva, sometimes even to infants -- the Diva Claudia coin issued for Nero's daughter.  Historians sometimes grant a title after death -- hence, Frederick and Catherine the GREAT.

These days, only popes grant the three recognized post mortem titles:

The Venerable.  This generally means that a person is under consideration for one of the two higher titles after death.  The Venerable Bede, English historian, died 735, is the world's most known "venerable," although he has been St. Bede for years.  Feast, May 27.

The Blessed.  This means that an individual got into heaven but is, as yet, unworthy of universal veneration.  For example, an Irish alcoholic, one Matt Talbot {Sp.}, I believe, has achieved beatification.  John-Paul II flat out refused to cannonize him.

Saint.  Saint means "holy" in Latin.  Presently, only the pope can grant this order or title.  The Saint gets a mention in the mass of the day that he or she died. The day is marked in the fasti [Fasti means calander in Latin.] as his or her "feast" day.

Numismatic Papal Saints.  I have met two women who collect coins issued by saints.  Louis IX, King of France and Edward of England were in their collections.  Issuant, cannonized popes [since 1300] are few.  Pius V has been a saint for centuries.  John Paul II cannonized Pius IX.  Both asked me which Pius IX coins to buy.  I told them to buy the younger portraits -- before 1860.

Follibus Fanaticus



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on January 29, 2006, 03:19:08 am
Thank you Follibus Fanaticus for your replies.
Actually I've had Muntoni ever since I bought it from Santamaria in the mid-70s, but, as you well know, its four massive vols. are nowhere as handy as Berman to carry around... I believe there are a couple of other handy works on papal coinage in English that I would like to acquire but, despite repeated tries, I've never succeeded in getting them through a bookshop here..
Now, the status of Cossa as pope has never been that clear, even the epitaph on his tomb in the baptistery of Santa Maria del Fiore in Florence describes him as "quondam papa". The matter, for pratical purposes at least - such as listing in the Annuario Pontificio - was only settled by Roncalli when he decided to take the name John XXIII as well.
Another issue I've been trying to find some info. on for years is when the papal mint first introduced machinery. The history of the papal mint has yet to be written, and its various locations in Rome at different times is still far from settled. But, for example, the piastre first produced by Sixtus V,  are they hammered or milled coins? The curvature of the flans of the pieces I have and have handled over the years makes me think they were produced by heavy machinery rather than hammered, but I have never come across any documented discussion of the matter. Any thoughts? Thank you.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on January 29, 2006, 01:50:46 pm
Dear Maffeo:

Cossa held an election at the Council of Pisa in 1410 to elect himself pope.  Was he a pope?  No, because:
1.  Councils of the Church do not elect popes, electors do.  Right now all electors are cardinals, but before the mid-10 hundreds, the Roman Nobility had electors.
2.  The Council of Pisa was not a valid Council of the Church anyway.
Let's say all the ex-judges of the Miss America contest met in Atlantic City and elected a president of the United States?  Would that man be president?  What would the Secret Service say when the new "elected" president knocked at the White House.  They would laugh themselves silly.  Then let's say the "elected" president died and was buried in a local church with the inscription "QUONDAM PRESIDENT."  How many historians would åçplace him among the presidents?  That's about the status of Cossa's claims to be pope.

As far as I know, machinery shows up in midreign for Urban VIII.  He moved the mint out of the Mint of Julius II.  The smaller coins were struck at the Castle San Angelo.  Larger coins were pressed with a water press at the bakery in the Vatican Gardens.  Large silver blanks were baked with the bread.  Then they were struck hot on a water press.  Clever.

Cheers,

Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on January 29, 2006, 04:43:50 pm
If Councils do not elect popes, what about Martin V? I appreciate the analogy (it might have been even more amusing if you had suggested that if all former Miss Americas were to come together to elect a President..., then, at least, it would have been a head-turning body of electors) but does it really fit? Poor Cossa was elected not by the Council of Pisa but by a group of cardinals - electors - most of whom had been created by Papa Correr... and, indeed, he was, at times, recognized as pope by a great chunk of the Church and by most of the great powers.
I loved the part about the baking of the papal pastries, oops, I mean the baking of the papal piastre - reminds me of the English custom of shoving three-penny pieces in Christmas puddings. Seriously though, do you have any reference you could indicate on the issue? I was well aware that machinery was introduced during the pontificate of Maffeo Barberini, one can see it in the technical improvement of his coinage - especially the testoni which go from really roughshod at the beginning of the pontificate to almost perfect at the end. But I still suspect that some kind of machinery might have been used to produce the piastre of Sixtus V - wasn't machinery employed in England for the production of some pieces during Elizabeth I's reign - much longer than Sixtus' pontificate but contemporaneous - which then, for whatever reason, reverted to hammering? Just where was the mint at the time of Julius II? Wasn't a lot of the minting at that time and in the immediately following pontificates simply entrusted to private companies - such as the Fuggers, if I recall correctly, at the time of Leo X or thereabouts?
Thanks a lot!



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on January 29, 2006, 09:08:59 pm
Dear Maffeo:

Gregory XII was still pope when the cardinals at the Council of Pisa held an election.  Gregory XII was pope till he died or resigned.  In this case, he resigned in 1415.  He died October 14, 1417.  Martin V was elected November 11, 1417  -- about a month after the former Gregory XII died.

The Council of Constance did not elect Martin V.  A special conclave of 22 cardinals, plus 30 representatives of five "Nations" elected him.  The office was vacant on November 11, 1417.

Political support never made anyone pope.  Take the case of the antipope who called himself Nicholas V from 1328 to 1330.  He even held Rome and was supported by a Holy Roman Emperor. [Beware.  There is a real pope, Nicholas V (1447-1455), who does issue coins.  Antipope Nicholas V issued no known coins.]

Yes I have a reference for the story of Urban VIII's bakery coins.  I have looked and looked and can find nothing on the piastre of Sixtus V.

Rome had two founders, two consuls, and two peaks on its major hill that held temples to two gods, Jupiter Best and Biggest and Juno Moneta.  Christians join this merry fun with two founders of the see, Peter and Paul.

During the "middle ages" Rome, naturally had two mints.  The Senatorial [no senate existed] Mint operated from the church of Santa Maria d'Aracoeli, which sits squarely atop the site of the Temple of Juno Moneta.  Eugenius IV closed the Senatorial Mint about 1443.

The papal mint may have opened in the Church of SS. Sergius and Bacchus in the Forum, when Urban V returned to Rome.  Julius II moved the mint to his new mint building, now the Bank of the Holy Spirit.   Paul III demolished most of the Sergius/Bacchus church about 1536, because it was considered an eyesore next to the Arch of Septimus Severus.  Its worst feature, a bell tower, sat atop the arch!  Last traces of the church were not carted away until 1812.

Cheers,

Follibus Fanaticus




Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on January 30, 2006, 05:20:53 pm
This Leo XIII fantasy coin brings up the entire issue of papal fakes. Leaving aside contemporary forgeries, I have come across modern fakes of the early "antiquiores" pieces. Then there are quite a few modern restrikes, especially of 19th century scudos. The weirdest are the odd combinations of obverses taken from Pius IX's pre-1860 scuods with the reverses of post-1860 5 lire pieces... But, and this is where I hope you might bombard me with your impressive erudition, FF, I haven't seen much in the way of modern fakes of papal pieces from the 14th through to the 18th centuries, have you come across any?
By the way, I'm still hoping that you might allow yourself to indulge in a burst of generosity and actually share the reference you have to the bakery-minting.
Take care.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on January 30, 2006, 09:07:09 pm
Dear Maffeo:

You can only get so far with papal numismatic research in English.  The story of Urban VIII's bakery and how he stole the secret of the water press from the Germans can be read in several Italian books.  Learn Italian and read them for yourself or wait for the footnotes in my book.  Learning Italian has its rewards.

For example, I found that the term baiocco [old It. byoccio, and other spellings] probably meant "little brown coin"[baio=brown].  The reference, an Italian version of the OED, nailed first printed use to a saying of Julius II, which contains not one but two first printed uses of an Italian word.  In combination, the two etymological firsts form the most screamingly funny obscene phrase I have ever read about numismatics.  Julius was justly revered for his ability to turn the air blue.  I sadly cut the quote from my first book.  I might include it in 6-point type in the second to encourage the reading of footnotes. [Private requests only and not on Forum.]

Italian will get you half way there; you'll need Latin to get all the information.  I recommend you read first: Maria Luisa Ambrosini.  The Secret Archives of the Vatican.  Barnes & Noble, New York, 1966. 366 pages.

Secret here means "of the secretary."  It is the papal correspondence file.  Some letters date back to the three Ottos, but the first full volume covers years 1073 - 1085.  Much survives after 1380.  Virtually all letters, official and private, plus reports, such as those from the mint survive.  For example, one hard working Italian extracted mint production records from 1600 to about 1795.  Has Krauss Publications bothered to look these up, and include them in their telephone books?  Not that I can see.

The secretary's library has sub-libraries, such as the entire surviving records of the Avignon antipopes.

Most of the Secret Archive material is in Latin, Europe’s official diplomatic language till close to 1700, when French took over.

Much of the material has been published, since Leo XIII opened the library to scholars.  Read Ambrosini's book and find out what's available.

Cheers,

Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on February 07, 2006, 12:03:30 pm
Reply 31 Continued

If you manage to collect the 176 coins suggested in "Reply 31," what do you do then?

First:  You will probably never get all 176 coins.  I have been collecting since 1981, but I do not have any coins of Benedict XI [If one exists.], Pius III or Innocent IX.  I do not have a portrait of Alexander VI.  I do not expect to obtain any of the above.  What do you do next?

You can devote yourself to upgrading the coins that you do have and/or you can branch out within the series.  For example Nicholas V in 1450 issued the first coin to commemorate a Holy Year.  This may well have been the first commemorative coins since the fall of the Roman Empire. [No fair counting consular stars on late Roman and Byzantine coins.  The consulship counts as a date, not a commemoration  -- with me at least.]

Nicholas V marked coins ANNO IVBILEI, a Latin ablative that means "during the Jubilee Year."  Romans, ancient and Renaissance were creatures of habit.  Once they did something, they continued it.  Sure enough, in 1475, Sixtus IV issues Holy Year coins.    Holy Year coins were issued, like clockwork, ever 25 years.  Check Y 329 & 330 in Krause.  Find coins of the Vatican City marked AN IVB MM.  MM = 2000 in Roman numerals.

Councils of the Church come in for issues of coins, which commemorate Constance, Lateran II, Trent, and Vatican II.  What about Vatican I in 1870?  No coins!  The troops of Victor Emanuel II captured Rome, shut down the council, and chased Pius IX, now canonized, into the Vatican.  Vatican I did not have time to do much of anything, much less issue coins.   NOTE: The Council of Constance issues are sede vacante issues of 1415 – 1417 from Rome and Avignon.  Some might not consider them as council coins.

The coin issued for Lateran II is a silver quarter ducat of Leo X.  Obverse:  Bust of Leo X, left; Rev. Christ blesses the Apostles.  Good luck even finding one of these.  For the epoch, this is a huge silver coin, obviously made to publicize the council.

The Church has never been shy about commemorating victory.  For example, Pius V commemorated a 1571 navel victory at Lepanto under his banner and the command of Don Juan of Austria, Philip II’s bastard brother.  Don Juan killed 25,000 Turks, captured thousands more, and freed more than 12,000 Christian galley slaves.  He captured 180 Turkish galleys, 117 large guns and 274 small guns.  The Turks lost ships, but more importantly the men to row them.  ["The Galleys at Lepanto" by Jack Beeching is a really good read.]

Look no farther than Y 226 in Krause for a modern counterpart.  A 1990 silver 1000 lire’s reverse shows John Paul II, advancing left, with a long cross that emits rays that topple barbed wire fences.  This commemorates the fall of Communism.

Cheers,

Follibus Fanaticus
 




Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on February 08, 2006, 01:26:58 pm
Reply to No. 31, 2d Part

What other categories of papal coins can a collector find?

IMMITATIONS OF ANCIENT ROMAN COINS.

The popes mint at Rome.  They had a tradition of coinage to imitate, but the tradition enters the papal coinage later than expected.  Let’s look at two numismatically aware popes.

Innocent VIII [1484-1492] collected coins.  None of his 34 Muntoni numbers show any real traces of copying ancient coins.  Innocent did, however, cast medals that look Roman.  One coin from the Aquila mint looks like a semis of Augustus [RIC 227]; however, Innocent did not mint this coin – the Barons at Aquila minted it in his name.

Marcellus II [1555] founded the Vatican Museum’s coin collection.  He served as Vatican Librarian for years before his short reign.  His coinage shows no trace of following the ancient Romans.

I would start the real tradition of imitating the ancients to Julius III [1550 – 1555].  One coin shows a seated Roma with an altered quote from Virgil’s "Aeneid": OMNIA TVTA VIDES [Book 1, verse 583]. Julius also issued a double carlino that shows a seated female figure labeled CONCORDIA.  Muntoni [9] calls her "Abundance."  Whoever she is, she demonstrates the ancient Roman habit of personification.

After Julius, imitation ceased for a time.  Gregory XIII minted Faith [FIDES] and Justice with her scales.  Sixtus V [1585 – 1590] mints the personification FELSINA from Bologna.  Felsina was an Etruscan name for the area around Bologna.

Clement XI [1700 – 1721] holds the number one place, in my opinion, for beautiful coins in the ancient Roman tradition.  He issued coins that show a standing CARITAS [Charity] holding a child with two children to each side.  The coin quotes various Roman coins that show empresses holding children with children to various sides.  I think it closely resembles some issues, in bronze, of Faustina, Younger, as Augusta under Marcus Aurelius.

Clement issued a coin showing the Three Graces standing in the square on the Capitoline Hill.  This commemorates the opening of a museum, the Pio Clementino, which remains open to the public.  It contains an ancient statue called "The Dying Gaul," which reminds Americans of a downed football player with the wind knocked out of him.  Clement XI also issued a coin showing the Pantheon, shown on no ancient Roman coin.  This brings up architectural types.

Leo X issued a coin showing Bramante’s design for a new St. Peter’s.  This is not a Roman type, but it might be in the Roman tradition of advertising buildings.  New St. Peter’s appears on many coins.  The pope’s cathedral, St. John Lateran, appears only on gold of Clement VIII.

Civic good works also find a place on papal coinage. Coins of Clement XII [1730 – 1740] show a seated goddess holding a wheel and reads: COMMODITAS VIARVM REDUX ["A return {to} comfort {of} on the roads"]. This copies a denarius of Trajan [RIC 315] that reads FORT[una] REDVX.  Clement XII is celebrating road repair.

Cheers,

Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on February 09, 2006, 06:51:48 am
What about the portrait coins of Sixtus IV? Couldn't one say that these pieces - the double grosso and the grosso - with the first realistic papal portraits ever, are clearly imitative? Could any pope ever look more Roman-emperor-like, as far as it's possible for a pope to do so, as the first papa Della Rovere does on these pieces?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on February 10, 2006, 01:17:49 am
A PAPAL ARMORIAL DISPLAY AT A REASONABLE PRICE

MUNTONI’S "Coins of the Popes and the Papal States" [Le Monete dei Papi e degli Stati Pontifici] illustrates 270 coats of arms from coins issued between the days of John XXII [1316-34] and Paul VI [1963-78].  Since 1978, three popes and two cardinal chamberlains have placed their arms on coins, so 273 coats of arms appear on papal coins.  Martin V’s arms  [1417-31] are the first arms of a pope to appear.  Previous armorial display on papal coins belonged to legates, governors and antipopes.

Popes who issued coins since Martin IV number 55, and all show arms on their coins.  Most Chamberlains of the Church since 1521 have issued election [sede vacante] coins for roughly 40 coats of arms on election coins, but we have arrived at one of the great gray areas in counting papal coats of arms.  Some chamberlains run more than one election.  For example, Cardinal Annibale Albani issued coins for the elections of 1721, 1724, 1730, and1740.  Further complicating our count: Annabale Albani was the nephew of Pope Innocent XII, and he uses the same coat of arms as his uncle.

Mint cities, such as Bologna and Ferrara, also have their coats of arms on coins.  That raises the count

To get a "complete" collection of coats of arms on papal coins can involve a numismatic game of mix and match [substitute].  The game can be played to the collector’s advantage, because it can reduce the cost of a collection.

Match [substitute a sometimes distant relative].  The coin with Martin V’s coat of arms is scarce.  The arms show a column within the shield.  Colonna means column in Italian, and the Colonnas, Martin’s family, owned the Column of Marcus Aurelius in Rome.  Substitute!  In 1758, the next election after the death of the long-lived Cardinal Albani, Cardinal Chamberlain Girolomo [Jerome] Colonna ran the election, and he issued five denominations of coin with the same coat of arms: Column within shield.  The silver grosso is reasonably priced.  Some coins of Martin V without the coat of arms are priced reasonably.

Mix [get a related image].  Some small coins just show the devices [images] from a coat of arms, but no shield.  Some images are called badges.  Coins of Nicholas V [1447-55] show crossed keys, his coat of arms as pope.  Coins of Calixtus III [1455-58] show the Borja bull [bo = ox, upgraded to a bull on the Borja coat].

Mix and Match.  Leo XI [1605] ruled only 28 days.  Although he issued on coins, his name was Alesandro de’ Medici and he used the same coat of arms as three other popes of that name. 

Coats of arms show up regularly on small coins.  For example, small billon piccolos of Pius II have his coat of arms, but cost one-tenth as much as a silver grosso.  [Piccolo is the everyday Italian word for "little," and is pronounced like the name of the band instrument {Italian: piccolo flauto = little flute}.  Piccolo denaro means "little penny."

Later, Julius II changed the smallest Roman coin to a quattrino.  Till 1590, quattrinos are billon; afterwards [last issue 1854, Pius IX] they are copper.  Mostly, they show the coat of arms of the reigning pope.  A few show the arms of the mint city.  [I bought an absolutely UNC 1854 quattrino for $8.]

Collecting papal coins need not be expensive,

Follibus Fanaticus




Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on March 08, 2006, 06:57:14 am
PRESS RELEASE [Baltimore Coin show, The Sun, The Catholic Review {Baltimore}]

LOYOLA GRAD TO TALK ON PAPAL COINS
John Carlin Ryan, a graduate of both Loyola High School and College [B.A., English 1963], talk about coins of the popes  on March 18 at the Baltimore Coin and Currency Convention.  The convention, March 17 –19 at the Baltimore Convention Center, Charles and Pratt Streets, Inner Harbor [1 West Pratt St.] will fill Halls A, B and C.  Admission is free.  Over 1,000 national and international coin and currency dealers will buy and sell coins made from the Eighth Century B.C. to the present.

Ryan, author of "A Handbook of Papal Coins," calls his talk "Coins of the Popes, 657 to the Present."  The first pope to issue a coin was Vitalian [657-672], the 76th pope.  The present pope, the 264th pope, still issues coins from Vatican City.

 The talk will cover: 1. Popes with [mostly] Emperors, 657 – 983;  2.  The Papal States, 1268 – 1870; 3.  Vatican City, 1929 – 2006.  John hopes to exhibit the first papal coin he ever owned, a 100 lire of Paul VI.  He got it from a change machine in Rome’s subway system [Termini Station].  It came with two 100-lire coins from San Marino and seven Italian 100 lire.

The talk will take place from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. in room 301 at a meeting of The Swiss Guard, a club that looks at papal, Italian and French coins. The lecture will last one hour.  That will cover papal coins at a bit above 22 years per minute.  Ryan notes that of the 72 popes since 1300, only four failed to issue coins.

-end- [Follibus Fanaticus & Captain FitzBattleaxe]




Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on March 11, 2006, 09:15:46 am
on 03/10/06 2:02 PM, a collector at [e-mail address] wrote:

[Follibus],

Please [view offering from e-Bay].

---Offering follows [edited].
 
Gold Vatican Scudo 1534 -1549 Sovereign papal Coin
Item number: --- Bidder or seller of this item? Sign in

Vatican 1534 - 1549 Sudo D'Or     LARGE COIN    Valued at 900.00 to 1100.00    Rare

Papal Paolo III

Instrumetal in commissining Michalangelo to paint the Sistine Chapel

Also Instrumental in personally Conducting battles on the Italian Pininsula


Gold Vatican Scudo 1534 -1549 Sovereign papal Coin Item title: Gold Vatican Scudo 1534 -1549 Sovereign papal Coin Current bid: US $103.51 Your maximum bid: US $
(Enter US $106.01 or more) ">  You will confirm in the next step.
eBay automatically bids on your behalf up to your maximum bid.
Seller assumes all responsibility for listing this item.

---End advertisement---

I advised:

I looked up the coin in Muntoni.  The photo on e-Bay shows no reverse.  It is a floral cross.  Why no photo of the reverse? Is there a big solder spot in the center from an old mount?  Low ball this bid.

I comment further to The Papal Corner:

1.  This coin is not rare, but it is desirable.

2.  It was not issued by "The Vatican," because Vatican City did not exist till 1929.  It was issued by The Papal States, which ceased to exist in 1870.

3.  When listing a coin "valued at $900 to $1,000," seller might think of showing the reverse.

4.  Seller needs a new art history book.  Julius II commissioned Micaelangelo to paint the Sistine Chapel in the early 1500's.  Paul III rehired Michaelangelo to paint the back wall in 1536, a picture [large] known as the "Last Judgment," finished in 1541.  Another mix-up with Julius II -- Julius was a general before his election as pope, and he did lead armies in the field as pope.  He won some, lost some, but he did kick the French out of Italy.  That is why the cardinals elected him.

Paul III was, at best, an armchair general, although he sprang from a military family.

Cheers,

Follibus Fanaticus






Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on March 20, 2006, 09:02:51 am
TALK ON PAPAL COINS AT WASHINGTON NUMISMATIC SOCIETY

John Carlin Ryan will speak to the Washington Numismatic Society [WNS] on: Papal Coins, 657 to Date.  It will cover: 1. Popes with [mostly] Emperors, 657 – 983; 2.  The Papal States, 1268 – 1870; 3.  Vatican City, 1929 – 2006.  John hopes to exhibit the first papal coin he ever owned, a 100 lire of Paul VI.  He got it from a change machine in Rome’s subway system [Termini Station].  It came with two 100-lire coins from San Marino and seven Italian 100 lire.

This will be the same talk as given at the Baltimore Coin Show on Saturday, March 18.  {Ryan and Allen Berman were in the same room for the Baltimore lecture.  See review {to come} under Swiss guard}].

THE TALK WILL TAKE PLACE ON TUESDAY, MARCH 21.

WNS will meet for the talk at 7:30 p.m. at The Community of Christ Church, 3526 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington DC.  This is a little over a block north of the U.S. Naval Observatory, also known as the Vice-president’s House on Mass. Ave.  The church faces Mass. Ave. from the west side of the avenue, the same side as the observatory.

However, parking and the entrance to the meeting room are in the rear of the church, which lies on a triangle shaped block bounded by Mass. Ave. 35th Place and Edmunds Street.

Going south on Mass Ave., pass Wisconsin Avenue, 36th Place, 36th Street, then turn right into 35th Place.  Park on 35th Place, which lies between Fulton and Edmunds Streets.  [This is the middle of the second alphabet.]

Going north on Mass Ave., turn left into where Fulton Street and 35th Place meet at the point of the triangle. [Remember the block is triangular.].  This can be thought of as almost a U-turn.  Finding the church’s back entrance from can be tricky.  It lies in the middle of the block.  Park, walk down the alley, find the entrance, go down the steps inside.

Follibus Fanaticus




Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on April 10, 2006, 08:30:53 am
Why Buy a Serafini

I just received a four volume copy of Count Camillo Serafini’s "Le Monete e Le Bolle Plumbee Pontifici del Medagliere Vaticino  [The Papal Coins and Lead Seals [of] in the Vatican Collection] Milan, 1910-28.  Mine is a paperbound Forni reprint that is undated but [I take it] long out of print.  Why buy this:

1. The Plates.  Let’s look at just one coin, the Gregory XIII testone that shows the Nativity on its reverse [Ser. 82 – 109], Muntoni  [35 – 36].  {LETAMINI * - * GENTES/ in ex. ROMA.}  Obverses show either a portrait of Gregory XIII or his coat of arms.

Serafini shows three examples in the plates.  All are pierced.  The two coins Muntoni shows are pierced, and they are probably two of the coins Serafini used.  Given that the Vatican collection alone has 27 examples, this is not a rare coin.  What’s hard to find is a nice unpierced example – even the Vatican did not have one to use as a plate.

What does this tell us?  1.  Collectors ignored testoni during the 1500’s.  They collected gold and crowns.  2.  Jewelers who quickly turned the attractive coins into medals to be worn must have grabbed up the bulk of the Nativity issue.

2. The variants in Serafini.  Serafini’s 27 examples exhibit every spelling mistake known to man or beast, especially oxen and asses.  Gregory is Rome’s ONT MAX  and OONT MAX, and he’s GREIGORIVSVS and GRORIVS.  He’s also numbered XIII, X.III and XIXI.  It looks like this was a huge issue struck in a hurry for tourists, something still known today.

In other words---an EF with a hole is not rare; a VG without a hole is not rare.  Now, show me an EF without a hole.  I’ve never seen one.  I called a fellow collector and said:  "All the Gregory Thirteen Nativity coins in Serafini’s plates are pierced."  He was unhappy, because he had passed on an unpierced VF+.

Follibus Fanaticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 09, 2009, 04:32:32 pm
This group still active?  Looks like the last posting was 3 years ago...I only discovered this board myself last week.

Foiblius...any timetable for your book being published? 

Some interesting things related to Papal-history and whatnot in the last couple of years...a fun book is Popes And The Tale Of Their Names, by Anura Guruge, which is available on Amazon.  He also operates a website http://www.popes-and-papacy.com/.  The guy is obsessed with Papal trivia, and his book is a fun read.

For example, he discusses why virtually everyone who lists the popes numerically comes out with a different number by the time the get to Benedict XVI, which our moderator here has touched on in previous posts, depending on whether you count the "first" Stephen II as pope, and whether you count Benedict IX once or three times (like the way Grover Cleveland is reckoned as both the 22nd and 24th President of the US).

Anyway, while his book has nothing to do with numismatics, but is still a fun read for $12.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Jochen on June 09, 2009, 04:54:04 pm
Hi Mark Trauernicht!

First of all Welcome on the Forum!
Follibus Fanaticus was very active until 2006, but since that time he has never posted again. Here is his e-mail address: jryan33@earthlink.net

Best regards


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 09, 2009, 05:08:51 pm
@ jochen:

Thanks for the info...


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on June 10, 2009, 08:45:57 am
Great reading! Too bad the thread has gone deserted, apparently. Papal coins are my main interest and I will be happy to participate in any further discussion on the subject.

Regards, P.  :)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 10, 2009, 03:14:09 pm
Here's one of my "pride and joy" papal coins. 

Oh sure, it ain't too pretty, but it's not holed, and since Marcellus II was pope for only 3 weeks in 1555, I was lucky to find it...(on eBay).  Guilio, Berman 1032, Cinagli 1


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on June 11, 2009, 06:47:02 am
Surely this is a rare coin, condition is more or less what you can expect for these coins (about fine or so) plus it's not holed, although portrait coins used to be pierced more often than those bearing arms. Too bad the coin has a weak spot right on the shield, otherwise it should show a nice "speaking" arms displaying a crouching deer (Cervini from cervo, Italian for deer). I don't have Muntoni at hand now but I can predict the catalogue number to be very close to 1  ;)



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on June 11, 2009, 07:15:37 am
Great to see this thread coming to life again! Shall we do our best to keep it active again?
Surprisingly, even though Marcellus II reigned for only 21 days, his giulio from the Roman mint is not difficult to find (the giulio from Rome of Adrian VI who reigned for 20 months is much rarer), and it appears often enough in auctions. It is, though, very difficult to find in a grade higher than Fine (= the Italian MB).


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 11, 2009, 07:24:25 am
Probably so.  I don't have a copy of Muntoni myself (the last time I used it was after a subway ride to the Library of Congress to ID some Ferrara quattrini of Paul V), so I rely on Berman and Cinagli for attributions, and Ryan too for 1268-1534.

Allow me to vent on Krause (a common sport, to be sure!).  

I just bought a lot from the UK that contained a few papal and some presumably Venetian copper/billon coins.  I don't really collect the Italian states outside of Papal, so I had to do some digging to figure out what I had.  

Krause for the 17th Century. If you are a collector of Venetian coins, you are out of luck, unless you collect crown-size silver coins, or gold. Even though they are on the 4th edition now of the 1601-1700 book, they STILL don't have anything to speak of re: Venice, surely one of the more important Powers of that age!!  

And don't even get me started on their complete lack of dealing with Russian wire money!!

Sheesh!

Eventually, I did manage to ID the two coins, via other sales online and here on Forvm.  No thanks to Krause.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 11, 2009, 07:33:03 am
@ Maffeo:

True, the Marcellus II isn't too dramatically rare; I was just pleased to find it for a reasonable price on eBay.  For Hadrian VI, I had to content myself with the anonymous ½ giulio of Piacenza.
(Berman 788, Cinagli 21(var), Ryan 217:16)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Joe Sermarini on June 11, 2009, 09:17:09 am
Unfortunately Follibus Fanaticus was, at that time, apparently the only one on the board collecting Papal coins.  I wish a few Papal coin collectors had been members back then and shared his interest.  I hope he is well and I wish he would rejoin us now that there are others here to share his interest.   


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 11, 2009, 09:39:18 am
@ Joe: 

I know what you mean.  I only 'discovered' this board myself last week...and I've been collecting papal for years!

Anyway, I shot him an email to tell him that The Papal Corner has 'come back to life'. 

Hopefully that'll get him interested in posting here again.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on June 11, 2009, 09:56:40 am
I bear with Joe's wish that FF is fine and shows up on FORVM again. He is John C. Ryan, if I understand correctly? His book is on my purchase list, together with a few others that have been mentioned in this thread.

@PG : your Hadrian VI 1/2 giulio may be anonymous, but is remarkably well preserved for the type :)
I agree W.C. is basically useless for the majority of XVI-XVII c. Italian State coinage. If you understand some Italian, you should definitely buy Muntoni: no prices, no rarity indicators, but ALL types are pictured and there is a huge wealth of additional information. The 1996 reprint is of reasonable quality and reasonably priced (if 300 € can be reasonable for a book, but the original issue goes above 1K€, if you can find it). It was originally printed in the early 1970s so it starts to show its age, but it is still the foundation of any library on Papal numismatics in my opinion.

@Maffeo: bentrovato !  ;)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 11, 2009, 10:32:10 am
@ Paleologo:

Yeh, FF and John C. Ryan are one in the same.  He did respond to one of my emails, so the email posted by Jochen above is correct.


A little digging on various used-book sites turned up Muntoni for anywhere from $719.22 (not sure if original or the 1996 reprint), $850 (for the reprint, from Charles Davis, whose books seem to run a bit high) to over $1200 on Amazon from one of their sellers. 

I only wish I could find it for 300 Euros (~$450 US)!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 11, 2009, 04:16:07 pm
Here's a question that has vexed me for a long time:

We all know that most catalogs show, for the 1866 Lira, a small, medium and large head variety. 
The small and the large variety, I understand.

What I have yet to see a photograph of, is of the MEDIUM head variety. What does the Medium head look like?  Can anyone give me a written description of the difference(s) between it and the small and large head varieties?

Or better still, photos?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on June 11, 2009, 04:40:58 pm
@ Paleologo:

Yeh, FF and John C. Ryan are one in the same.  He did respond to one of my emails, so the email posted by Jochen above is correct.


A little digging on various used-book sites turned up Muntoni for anywhere from $719.22 (not sure if original or the 1996 reprint), $850 (for the reprint, from Charles Davis, whose books seem to run a bit high) to over $1200 on Amazon from one of their sellers. 

I only wish I could find it for 300 Euros (~$450 US)!

Several Italian/San Marino numismatic online  stores offer Muntoni (always the 1996 Urania reprint) for between 300-350 euro. If you do a thorough search you might find it for just a little less (say, 290). But then you have to add the postage, which can be quite expensive.

The original edition is a rarity in its own right now and very expensive, at least 1000 euro and usually much more. I bought mine in the mid 1970s for the then equivalent of about $200 and it's now worth well over ten times that. Sometimes I think numismatic books are a far better investment than the coins themselves.  ;D



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 11, 2009, 04:54:02 pm
@ Maffeo:  Hmmm, ok.  Thanks.  I'll have to look into that a little more...

@ everyone:  Here's a photo of both the small and the large bust varieties of the 1866 Lira.  What does the medium bust variety look like?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on June 12, 2009, 12:51:35 am
I find it very difficult to distinguish the small from the medium, and I suspect most dealers do as well. Here are pics of what are supposed to be examples of the small and the medium, but I can't tell them apart.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on June 12, 2009, 05:18:48 am
Here's a picture of an overlay job I did for the Italian forum Lamoneta.it  some time ago. You can spot the only tiny difference between small bust and medium bust in the area of the Pope's nape. The grey shadow is from the medium bust (lower layer) showing through the small bust (upper layer). This goes well together with what is found in standard Italian coin catalogs. The common knowledge is you can tell s.b. from m.d. by measuring the edge of the Pope's cap with a caliper. This should be ca.6 mm in s.b., ca.7 mm in m.b. (try if you can  ;D)

Regards, P.  :)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 12, 2009, 06:41:14 am
Thanks Maffeo and Paleologo.

So you are saying measure the gap from the pope's skullcap to the leftmost part of the letter M in MAX to get the (0.6mm vs. 0.7mm) measurement?

Yet from what I see from Paleologo's overlay, it looks like the skullcap is in exactly the same place in both coins.

(for the record, on my "small bust" illustrated in my last post, the gap between the zuchetto and the left upright in the M is right at 0.7mm)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on June 12, 2009, 08:45:57 am
So you are saying measure the gap from the pope's skullcap to the leftmost part of the letter M in MAX to get the (0.6mm vs. 0.7mm)
measurement?


No sorry, I think I did not make it clear enough. I mean you need to measure the segment the connects the front tip of the cap (where it meets the forehead in the profile) to the rear tip (where it meets the hair). The length of this segment should be ca.6 mm in the case of s.b., ca.7 mm in the case of m.b. Anyway, since an image is better than a thousand words... I mean measuring the red line in picture below.

Hope this helps  :)

PS@PG: did you get my message?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 12, 2009, 02:35:50 pm
@ Paleologo:

Yes, I did get your message re: Muntoni. I'll have to check into that...(hopefully he takes PayPal or something similar).  Even if shipping from Italy to the US is fairly outrageous, it still will beat paying over twice that much for the same books here in the USA.  Thanks!!!

thanks also for the updated photo re: the small and medium 1866 Lira.



I'll give a full report of the coins I just bought at the Whitman Books Coin Show in Baltimore.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 15, 2009, 02:47:01 pm
Here's an interesting website.
 
The National Conservation Institute, Administration of the State Chateau - Archbishop Chateau and Gardens in Kromeriz
Numismatic collection of Olomouc archiepiscopate, in the Czech Republic.
 
Apparently one (or several!) of the Archbishops in the 18th Century were avid collectors and, not surprisingly, there is an extensive collection of Papal coins and medals here.  The best part is, the entire collection is photographed--obverse and reverse--and the database has a fairly powerful search engine!
 
Check it out here: http://coins.azz.cz/index.php?lng=2


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on June 16, 2009, 07:42:03 am
Very good pointer to a collection that was totally unknown to me before. It seems to have been cataloged professionally. Too bad one cannot get a magnification of coin pictures, apparently.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 16, 2009, 09:02:53 pm
@ Paleologo:  I agree.  Magnification would be of great benefit to that site!  And a great benefit to us!

Here's something I bought at the coin show in Baltimore this past weekend.  1/3 grosso of Alexander VI (Berman 539, Ryan 213:14; Cinagli 22), for a surprisingly reasonable price.

It was apparently pierced at one time, then plugged with a similar grade of silver.  Looks like the coin was double-struck, or at least seems to be in the area of the tiara.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on June 17, 2009, 07:46:02 am
for a surprisingly reasonable price
May I ask... ?

BTW, I try not to buy pierced/trimmed/repaired coins. I know this will cut me off from the chance of buying several papals at reasonable prices, but I take it. Being on a somewhat limited budget, I usually rather go for common coins in high grade. Pure matter or aesthetics, of course.

Quote
It was apparently pierced at one time, then plugged with a similar grade of silver. 
Funny piercing, done outside the standard area (top-center). Not for devotional purposes of course, maybe it was just an accident. Or maybe was done to deface the Borja bull? Just rambling...  ;)

Quote
Looks like the coin was double-struck, or at least seems to be in the area of the tiara.
Yes, it seems so, although pictures are not enough for me to make it out clearly. Nothing strange here anyway  :)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 17, 2009, 08:02:01 am
I paid $35 for it.

Yeh, it would be interesting to know (but even more fun to speculate!) why the coin was holed there.  I can imagine one of the--many--enemies of the Borjas drinking in a tavern somewhere in Rome...it's 1503 and Alexander is (finally!) dead...chose this way of celebrating by stabbing the coin right up the Bull's ass with his stiletto!

I'm sure the truth is a lot less interesting.  :-)

I'm not too big on getting holed coins myself. Only if they're heavily discounted will I even consider it.  That said, I have several holed and sometimes repaired specimens of various popes, mostly late 17th-early 18th Century.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: rennrad12020 on June 17, 2009, 09:50:59 am
    I recently purchased my first Papal coin. 

AR 26mm PAVLVS III MACERATA GIULIO (13 October 1534-10 November 1549)

Obv: . PAVLVS. III. / [P]ONT. MAX
Farnese arms with crossed keys and tiara above
Rev: S / PAVLVS. (mm #50). MACER.
St Paul standing with sword in right hand  and book in left hand; shield #84 (DeSylvia with lion rampart) left of feet, shield #83 (city of Macerata) to right.

Berman 949a (CNI 34, S. 205-15, M 144)

This coin has nice dark toning with iridescent highlights (especially on obv) that did not show up on the scans.

     Unfortunately the only references I have access to are Berman and Ryan (which does not extend this far).  I’ll have to save my pennies and buy a Muntoni set someday.

     I have been interested in this field for a while and had even purchased Berman’s book a couple of years ago.  This thread inspired my to finally pull the trigger and become a little more active in studying and collecting these coins.

That link to the Olomouc archiepiscopate collection is great; thanks for posting it!

John Wrenn 


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 17, 2009, 11:11:55 am
That's a nice Paul III!

A useful stopgap until you get Muntoni is to try to find a copy of Angelo Cinagli's Le Monete dei Papi con Supplemento di Ortensio Vitalini

Sure it's a 19th Century book (the main part was published in 1848, and Vitalini's supplement in 1892), but it has been reprinted (my copy is from 1970) several times.   

And, when you can find it, it isn't very expensive. 

But for a single-volume work it goes into much greater detail than Berman, since it is an attempt to catalog everything by the use of tables to show all the spelling variations in legends and so on.  Not much in the way of illustrations, other than a few plates with line-drawings.

It's fairly comprehensive...even going to the extent of listing coins for popes that did not actually issue them (Leo IX, Paschal II, etc.) and so on.  It's written in Italian, but any translation website (AltaVista's babelfish, to name the one I use) will help with that.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on June 17, 2009, 11:13:17 am
I'm sure the truth is a lot less interesting.  :-)

Not necessarily, in medieval and early modern Europe it was a common superstitious practice to nail a coin on door beams for scaramantic purposes. Coins with images of saints were considered most suitable, and low value coins (such as a third of a grosso) wouldn't have represented a waste of money.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on June 17, 2009, 11:15:06 am
Nice coin, better than average grade and from a scarce mint. I believe issues from Rome and Ancona are the most common for this type than spans several XVI c. popes, Macerata (another town in the Marche region) is much harder to find.

P.S. Coin name is giulio  ;) from Pope Julius II who first introduced this denomination


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on June 17, 2009, 11:18:03 am
I would be quite careful with Cinagli. Although an excellent book for its time, it suffers from several mistakes and is definitely outdated on some issues. Relata refero, by the way, as I don't have the book.

Regards, P.  :)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 17, 2009, 12:28:18 pm
I guess the real problem for us here in America was a lack of availability of useful guide books. 

When I first started collecting Papal in the early 1980s (first coin was a 1850-R Anno V Baiocco) the Ryan and Berman books had yet to be published.   I had seen Joseph Coffin's Coins of the Popes (1946) at the University of Tennessee Library, and while that is an interesting book, providing translations of inscriptions and a few plates, it wasn't a guide book in any meaningful sense.  And yet that was all we had in English, besides O.P. Eklund's Copper Coins of the Papal States (itself a reprint from The Numismatist) that only covers 1600-1870, and the Krause Standard Catalogs, which only took you to the mid-1700s back in those days.  No Internet either.

So unless I was prepared to fly to Italy and then go book shopping there, I was out of luck.  When Edward Jencius offered the Cinagli reprint in 1986, I jumped at the chance.  I may have paid $30 for it back then. 

And Cinagli is a good book for what it is.  Sure it's old, and the author had a tendency to (try to) list anything and everything he ever heard of (whether or not it actually existed). And he also tends to (try to) stick everything into the Quattrino/Baiocco/Grosso/Giulio/Testone/Scudo system, even the Avignon coins.  So it's definitely not without its problems.  Of course, within the next 5 years, both Ryan's and Berman's books came out.

Yet I still find myself using Cinagli, as a kind of supplement to the other two books, and only very rarely have I been forced to admit a particular coin is "unlisted in Cinagli".
So I say if you can pick it up somewhere for cheap (say, under $50), go for it. 


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 17, 2009, 12:44:09 pm
@ Maffeo:

That is pretty interesting--nailing a coin to the door frame to ward off evil!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on June 19, 2009, 05:03:37 am
I would like to join in with my own new entry:

Innocent XI (1676-89), Testone (reformed) 1689. Obv. Odescalchi arms Rev. MELIVS EST DARE QVAM ACCIPERE in cartouche. 9.11 gr. 32.5 mm. 0 h. Muntoni 116, Berman 2102.

An interesting coin even if doesn't boast any majestic portrait or gorgeous biblical scenes (the complexity of the Odescalchi arms is already pleasing enough for me). Good condition (much better than in the Muntoni table ;D), stated as VF+ but could be even better if some apparent wear is really a somewhat weak strike, plus a nice patina. It comes from an Italian auction where it went rather unnoticed (bought at base price as unsold lot)

The series of the Testoni with MELIVS EST DARE QVAM ACCIPERE is probably the most abundant and common Papal issue in the baroque era. It is said to have been produced for the Pope to finance war against the Ottomans, hence the motto ("giving is better than receiving"). However the bulk of this emissions, with its variety of subtypes, comes in the 1684-86 years when also the majority of undated coins can be attributed. Issues from years 1687-89 are rather scarce, not to say definitely rare, another detail that went apparently unnoticed in the auction and makes this coin even more interesting. I gave it one degree or rarity to play it conservative, but this coin has only one occurrence in CoinArchives and this is from the same dies as this one (NAC 26 27/06/2003 Lot 2800).

Finally, a technical note. It is much more evident in hand than from the picture, but this coins has a serously ovalized flan. The 0-6 axis is approx. 1 mm. longer than the 3-9 axis. This is a trademark of coins produced by a roller press. Coins were "squeezed" between two cylinders where obv. and rev. types were directly engraved. Failing to compensate for flan shape before minting would produce a polar distortion of the resulting coin shape. This is the oldest occurrence of this fact that I know, before this coin I only saw it quite often in the 1730-40's. Maybe this is a sign that the Rome mint started experimenting wit the roller press when producing this small issue in the late XVII c., and that results were not satisfactory so use of this machinery was dropped, then resumed several decades later, when it was required again to mint on a large scale to fulfill the requirements of Clement XII's monetary reforms.

Thanks to Roberto Camillini for preliminary discussion about the subject of this post  ;)

Regards, P.  :)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on June 19, 2009, 06:47:20 am
Paleologo's interesting post on the Testone of Papa Odescalchi raises an issue that I have been wrestling with for more than thirty years: when was machinery first introduced in the papal mint in Rome?
There is no doubt that the great bulk of the coinage of Urban VIII was produced with presses powered by water and situated in the Vatican gardens and that machinery was installed immediately in the new building of the mint built by Innocent X and which still stands at the beginning of the Via del Governo Vecchio and just off the Via del Corso.
But was machinery used at all in Rome during previous pontificates? For example, were the piastre of Sixtus V hammered or were they struck with some kind of torque? Their general appearance is such as to make one suspect that these pieces were hand struck, yet I remember having a heated discussion many years ago with an eminent Roman numismatist who insisted that they were produced with some kind of machinery since most of the still-extant specimens have a concave shape reflecting this.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 19, 2009, 08:45:49 pm
That's a beautiful specimen, Paleologo! 

Your post made me go and check my Innocent XI mezzo piastra to see if there was any noticeable difference in the diameter for it.  Not really, the 3-9 axis is only about ½mm wider than the 12-6 axis.  So perhaps the two larger denominations were struck on a regular screw-press and not a roller press.

Not sure when "milled coinage" first began for Papal coins.  I had read somewhere along the way that it was during Urban VIII's pontificate, but weren't more specific.   

But for Papal, the beginning seems to be less clear-cut than for, say, English coins where 1662 is basically the start-date (with some earlier exceptions).



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on June 22, 2009, 07:24:14 am
There is a very recent book, "La Zecca di Bologna e le sue Macchine" (The Bologna Mint and its Machinery) by Michele Chimienti, whi deals very specifically with technical issues related to coinage in the second Papal (often not-so-papal) mint. Unfortunately it seems there is nothing comparable for the mint of Rome and the old "Annali della Zecca di Roma" by Martinori don't help that much apparently. All these books of course require understanding Italian to be of any use.

@P.G.: Your observation makes me think even more that this issue was some kind of trial strike.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 30, 2009, 05:15:31 pm
Unusual to see something like this on eBay:  not often do you see a denaro of Benedict III (855-858) offered.

[BROKEN LINK REMOVED BY ADMIN]


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: wandigeaux (1940 - 2010) on June 30, 2009, 05:35:18 pm
The seller also seems to show a line of very fetching frocks displayed outside his store!  Something to placate the wife, perhaps.  George Spradling


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on July 01, 2009, 05:26:04 am
I was quite amazed at seeing this on eBay, especially considering the start at 0.99$ :o

I followed it until it reached over 300$. I'm not an expert in this early coinage, but I see no obvious sign of the coin not being genuine. It looks like many gave him credit, actually. (Expensive) jewel out of the mud?  ;D

The dealer seems to have some other nice piece, by the way. Check the counterstamped grossetto from Ferrara, it's quite neat for the type. He calls him "1600's giulio" but no one of you has been fooled, right?  ;)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on July 01, 2009, 07:57:24 am
FINALLY got a copy (1996 reprint) of Muntoni!

Now, to dig in and re-attribute everything in the collection...something I actually enjoy doing!   ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on July 01, 2009, 03:27:47 pm
What about that Doppio Grosetto of Ferrara? 

Anyone know why the legends were obliterated on that piece? 

Muntoni lists both the "before" picture (before the legends were obliterated...Munt. 237) and "after" (with the legends obliterated, Munt. 238).

What's the story behind this?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on July 03, 2009, 08:12:45 am
The reason is certainly linked to a monetary reform, and the fact that the coin was not retired, but rather recirculated at a new value. I don't have books now with me so I don't remember the details, but I'm quite sure there's a note on Muntoni about the subject. Also, another good source of information about this period is this:

Silvana Balbi de Caro, Luigi Londei, MONETA PONTIFICIA DA INNOCENZO XI A GREGORIO XVI, Ed. Quasar, Roma 1984

Authors are a well known academic numismatist and the director of the Central Institute for Archives. Not a book about numismatics proper, rather about economic and monetary history of the Papal State, so it might be difficult to read if you don't have a good understanding of Italian. But it has a few stunning pictures of papal piastre  :)

By the way, congrats for your new Muntoni and have a good time reclassifying your full collection  ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on July 03, 2009, 06:16:36 pm
The Benedict III denario reached $3,551 !


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on July 23, 2009, 09:34:16 am
Is there a medal equivalent to Berman? I mean, a not terribly expensive catalog for papal medals. A couple of months ago I tried to identify an 18-century bronze medal that belongs to a relative of mine (sorry, can't remember the pope's name; they all blend together in a mixture of Innocent-Clement-Sixtus-Pius for the non-expert, but for what I've seen now it might have been Innocent XII...? Seem to remember his face...). At the time, I had brief access to Berman, but of course, the medal wasn't in the book. I might be interested in purchasing/locating such a catalog, if it exists, as I wouldn't mind learning a bit about this totally untapped field of numismatics (like what the difference is between a piastre and a silver medal, for instance, although I admit I've never handled the former). Thank you.

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on July 23, 2009, 10:03:43 am
I wish there was...that would make things considerably easier.

There are three, maybe four, Papal medal books that I use.  Each has its problems, but used together they're pretty good. And all have the advantage of being (relatively) inexpensive.

The first of which is the Spink Catalogue of Papal Medals in the Lincoln Collection, also known simply as "Spink" or "Lincoln".  This is a sales catalog from 1898, but is widely used as a guide book.  It has been printed several times since (mine is from 1962).  This lists lots of medals--official and unofficial--by pope and by the reverse legends.  A disadvantage is that it has very few illustrations, and no photographs, and covers only through 1879 or so.   This book can usually be found used online.

The second, and probably most important, is the Mazio catalog.  The reprint I have is entitled A Pictorial Catalogue of Papal Medals 1417-1942 As Struck by The Mint of Rome for The Vatican.  Unlike Spink, this lists only the official medals (and/or their restrikes).   Other than the endpieces (in Italian) the book has no text.   But it has the advantage that every medal is photographed.

The third book Roma Resurgens: Papal Medals from the Age of the Baroque isn't really a guidebook. Rather, it is a art-exhibit book of medals of that period from a 1983 exhibition at the University of Michigan Museum of Art.  But the advantage here is that there is lots of text explaining the medals and the events they were intended to commemorate.  Though it's not comprehensive, the period covered runs from 1534 to 1747, which may well fit the period of your medal.

The fourth book is a catalog (a booklet, really) of unofficial medals struck in the early 1700s for the Bishop of Bamberg featuring all popes up to that time (including a few that actually never existed).  Papstgeschichte auf Medaillen: Muenzkabinett im Historischen Museum Frankfurt am Main  

A disadvantage of all these books is that they don't list values (well, except the Spink catalog, but those are from 1898).


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on July 23, 2009, 10:55:09 am
silvernut, you might be interested in having a look HERE (http://www.lamonetapedia.it/index.php/Medaglistica_(bibliografia)). There are several entries about Papal medals.

Regards, P.  :)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on July 23, 2009, 12:07:19 pm
Thank you both for your answers. I guess first I need to learn things like what 'official' or 'unofficial' mean, and what are restrikes (I'm guessing these are medals minted after the pope's death, or even in modern times?). This is a totally 'virgin' field for me, and my monthly budget doesn't allow me to venture beyond my main field of interest too much... But I'm thinking it might be an interesting collecting theme for the future, as it is historically interesting and aesthetically attractive. I'll see if I can get some of the books first, and learn a bit before venturing into this world!

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on July 23, 2009, 12:20:38 pm
Here's a good source of information, and where you can get some of the books I mentioned:

http://www.vaticancoins.com/Papal_Medals/papal_medals.html

In particular, check out their link to "A Short History of Papal Medals" on that page.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on July 23, 2009, 01:39:46 pm
Thank you again. Very useful. Who knows, I might even be a contributor to this thread some time in the future!

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: AlexB on July 23, 2009, 08:59:05 pm
Hi

I read this column regularly and find it very interesting. I hope to follow the discussions going forwards.

I have a question though - is it a field of numismatics? Or should it have its own column?

Brgds

Alex


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on July 24, 2009, 02:03:45 am
Yes, I have found this thread extremely informative over the last few days. Now that I'm forcing myself not to buy any of my Caracalla coins (I'm going on holidays, and I've had bad experiences before with packages arriving in August), I find this topic fills my summer restlessness for numismatic knowledge!

Now, for instance, the following medal was recently sold online. It looks very similar to the only one I've ever handled which I mentioned above, but the Pope featured is surely different. I'm guessing that this medal is not contemporary with the Pope it depicts, Sixtus IIII (15th century), ... or is it? If it's not, when where most of these medals minted? And why? Would they be the equivalent of the Roman ´Consecratio´ issues?

Also, I read that Papal medals were usually in silver or gold, but that the engraving artists did bronze replicates of their own which are the ones most people collect today. Is this right?

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on August 05, 2009, 03:03:46 pm
Odds are, your Sixtus IV medal is a restrike.  But honestly I can't really tell one way or the other. 

From what I've read, it was common practice, once the gold and silver strikings were completed, to give the engraver the used dies.  He (and his heirs...and later whoever else had possession of the dies) could strike as many medals as they wanted.  Many Papal medals were restruck in this way into (at least) the 19th Century.

If it is a restrike, at least the dies don't appear to have rusted (like on some of the bronze medals I have), so that's obviously a plus here. 

The originals at least were contemporary with the reign of Sixtus IV (1471-1484). This one is listed in the Mazio catalog, as # 21.


Title: Papal Overdates
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on August 22, 2009, 03:08:19 pm
Muntoni doesn't really deal with the subject of overdates, and Krause does it only sporadically...anyway here are six different overdates from my collection...

Apologies for my scanner...in some cases you can't see much detail, but with the naked eye, the overdates are quite a bit bolder.

1.  Clement XII Grosso 1737 over 6, A.VIII.  Muntoni 124b/Berman 2654/KM 870
You can see the "crescent" of the lower left of the 6 under the horizontal bar of the 7

2.  Benedict XIV Carlino 1751 over 0, A.XI. Muntoni 156c/Berman 2774/KM 1165
the picture isn't clear here, but the lefthand curve of the 0 is present.

3. Clement XIII ½ Grosso 1761 over 0, A.III. Muntoni 30/Berman 2908/KM 995
This was sold to me as '1762' (owing, I think, to the peculiar shape of the '1's here).

4. Pius VII Giulio 1817 over 6-B, A.XVIII. Muntoni 40/Berman 3230/KM 1079
on this very worn specimen, the lower left "crescent" of the 6 is present

5. Pius VII 2 Giulii, 1818 over 6-B, A.XVII. Muntoni 39a/Berman 3229/KM "1816"
the shape of the 8 here, compared to the other 8, gives it away. 
NOTE:  While KM gives this the number 1816, that number does not fit in with the rest of their listings, so I am convinced they somehow carried over the date into their numbering sequence!



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on August 22, 2009, 03:11:05 pm
One more:

6. Pius IX 5 Baiocchi 1850 over 49-R, ANN.IV, Muntoni 25a/Berman 3321/KM 1346
You can see the lower bar/serif of the 4 under the 5, and part of the lower curve of the 9 under the 0.  What you really can't see on the scan, but you can see on the actual coin, is the middle crossbar of the 4 under the 5.


Title: Re: Papal Overdates
Post by: Paleologo on August 24, 2009, 05:47:12 am
Repunching of dates as a quick-and-dirty way to get new dies was quite common in the Papal mints especially in the XIX c. (as well as in several other Italian mints of the time) Actually, I didn't see so many examples from the XVIII c. until now. Thanks for showing!

4. Pius VII Giulio 1817 over 6-B, A.XVIII. Muntoni 40/Berman 3230/KM 1079
on this very worn specimen, the lower left "crescent" of the 0 is present

This variety was unknown to me, could it be the standard this coin looks like? Look HERE (http://numismatica-italiana.lamoneta.it/moneta/W-PIOVIIP2/1)

5. Pius VII 2 Giulii, 1818 over 6-B, A.XVII. Muntoni 39a/Berman 3229/KM "1816"
the shape of the 8 here, compared to the other 8, gives it away. 
NOTE:  While KM gives this the number 1816, that number does not fit in with the rest of their listings, so I am convinced they somehow carried over the date into their numbering sequence!

This is well known instead, and is rare: see HERE (http://numismatica-italiana.lamoneta.it/moneta/W-PIOVIIP2/4) (note 2)

Regards, P.  :)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: rennrad12020 on September 22, 2009, 02:41:30 pm
No one has posted anything in a month so I thought I would stir the embers a little.

Here is my most recent addition:

AR DOPPIO GIULIO Sede Vacente 25mm

Camerlengo Cardinal Carlo Rezzonico
2 February -19 May 1769

Obv: SEDE ∙ VACAN / [T]E ∙ MDCCLXIX
         Shield 176 below canopy and crossed keys

Rev: VENI ∙ SANC [TE] SPIRITUS
         Radiant dove
         QUINTO ∙ DI  ∙ SCV in small letters (1/5 scudo)

Toned with bright high spots, holed

Berman 2925 (CNI 2, S 3-4, M 2)

The Camerlengo was not the Carlo Rezzonico whom was Clement XIII and died just prior to this period of sede vacante, but rather his nephew.

I have to admit that collecting papal coins is not my primary passion, and I’m not made out of money so I took another step on the slippery slope of holed coins.  I’m not going out of my way to find them.  Not the most glamorous coin in the world, but it has its charms I think.

I have had my eye out for a cheap Forni reprint of Cinagli's work, but I have been unable to find a copy.  Maybe a more realistic hope would be that someday  it will just be scanned  and free on line. Muntoni is a little out of my budget right now.








Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on September 23, 2009, 06:25:24 am
I took another step on the slippery slope of holed coins

Agh! You're sailing off to the dark side...  ;D

Seriously, it's really difficult to find those SEDE VACANTE coins without holes. It definitely must be related to the iconography. The Holy Ghost portrayed as a dove started to be an important subject of worship in the early modern era (probably after the Council of Trent) so this should come as no surprise, I guess.

Just my small piece of advice: save some money, buy Muntoni. Papal coins won't be secondary to you anymore  ;)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on September 24, 2009, 06:51:01 am
By the way, if you're interested in a bloody good gallery of Sede Vacante coins, have a look HERE (http://www.lamoneta.it/topic/36335-sede-vacanteche-passione/)  8)

P.S. From time to time I keep posting links to the Italian numismatics forum. I hope this is not against the rules of this board. Until now I didn't get roasted, so I'll keep doing it without further comments  ;)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: rennrad12020 on September 24, 2009, 11:41:32 am
Wow! Thanks for the link. I had to join to see the attachments, similar to this Forum, but worth it! Graves nummi!

     I think I will buy a copy of Muntoni soon, I can't really live with Berman, not that there is really anything wrong with it, just too general for me (although the coats of arms tables are great).  My papal coin collecting will come to a screeching halt for several months, but I need the books, my library doesn't have them, they are too long to scan and online research is not really my thing.

JPW


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on September 24, 2009, 03:24:00 pm
Muntoni is really terrific; I recommend it as well.  (Berman uses the same coat of arms tables as Muntoni, by the way). 

Cinagli is good as a "stopgap"--but only if you can find it for cheap--until you can afford Muntoni...I used it for years in conjunction with the Berman, Bobba, Herkner, Eklund, etc. books I have.

Muntoni trumps all of these.    Even though I don't speak, or read, a word of Italian (and nowadays, thanks to BabelFish and other online translation websites, you don't really need to), Muntoni is still easy to use.  It's the Caddilac (or should I say Maserati) of Papal coin books.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on September 25, 2009, 07:28:46 am
I had to join to see the attachments

Ops, didn't notice, sorry. I'm just logged in all the time  ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on September 25, 2009, 07:38:50 am
I just came across an old, used (somewhat abused  ;)) copy of LE MONETE PAPALI DEL XIX SECOLO by Vico D'Incerti (publ.1961 by the Italian Numismatics Society). Although it is not big on illustrations, the catalog part has a nice, detailed treatment of varieties which is completely missing from Berman, largely missing from Muntoni and also rather sketchy in other contemporary catalogs of Italian decimal coins such as Gigante or Montenegro (the successors to Bobba-style handbooks, for those who know the matter). If the period between Pius VII and Pius IX is of interest to you, this is a very nice addition to the other books. Great buy if you can get it for cheap (I paid 20 €).


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on September 25, 2009, 07:59:35 am
Speaking of Papal coin references, I keep seeing this come up on eBay:

[Broken link removed by Admin]

This purports to be (taken from the listing) a:

CATALOG OF COINS OF PAPAL COINAGE OF POPES OF VATICAN
FROM 668 AD UPTO 1605 AD INCLUDES UNSEEN & COLOUR
PICS OF MANY RARE COINS WITH THEIR ESTIMATED PRICES
205 PAGES
IN A CD IN PDF FORMAT IN ENGLISH LANGUAGE CAN BE VIEWED ONLY ON PC OR MOBILE

I've never heard of this reference before, has anyone else?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on September 25, 2009, 09:13:42 am
Sounds like it could be a CD copy of some recent (because of the color pictures) auction catalog, but I can't think of a recent auction with 200+ pages of papal coins only. I can't think of a BOOK with color pictures of papal coins, actually. Would be interesting to investigate. Any volunteer for buying?  ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: rennrad12020 on October 22, 2009, 11:16:00 pm
My latest addition to my Papal collection (I may proudly add unholed):

AR GIULIO 26mm CLEMEMT XIII Rome (6 July 1758-2 February 1769)
Carlo Rezzonico

Obv: ∙ CLEM ∙ XIII. / PONT ∙ M ∙ A  ∙ V ∙
Rezzonico arms with crossed keys and tiara above
Rev: OBLECTAT
   IVSTOS
   MISERCOR
     DIA
   1763
All within palm wreath mintmark 117 at bottom (two crossed hammers)   


Berman 2902 (CNI 59; S. 66-71; M. 20)

Compassion delights just men is my translation.  Please enlighten me if I am missing some reference I should know.


JPW


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on October 23, 2009, 10:25:25 am
Ciao Petrus, welcome back to the bright side  ;D ! I have two items of this coins, both from different dies as your coin and different between themselves. This must have been quite a big emission, but apparently it is not so easily found. I catalogued both my coins under Muntoni 20, Berman 2902. Can you see the differences why yours is M.22-23?

The shield on reverse is the arms of the Presidente delle Zecche (President of the Papal Mints, an honorable but rather void title, the only serious duty being to stand by at every estrazione, i.e. when coins were assayed, certified and delivered into circulation). This one should be Monsignor Casoni's, if I remember right. Consider that at this time the only papal mints striking gold and silver were Rome and Bologna, that was using a totally different monetary system with different denominations and imagery, so no mintmark was actually required. Translation of the reverse motto sounds ok to me.

P.S. By looking better at the coins, the second one could be a die match to yours. This looks more reasonable to me.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: rennrad12020 on October 23, 2009, 10:38:29 am
  Oops, I copied the Muntoni # from Berman 2901 by mistake.  Thanks for pointing that error out! 

I think you were right the first time about the obverse dies; the position of the V in the legend appears different on all three.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on October 25, 2009, 05:20:23 pm
You're probably right. Also the design of the... nappe :-\ (what's the English for those thingies hanging from the bishop's hat?) seems to be different in each coin.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on October 25, 2009, 05:59:23 pm
You're probably right. Also the design of the... nappe :-\ (what's the English for those thingies hanging from the bishop's hat?) seems to be different in each coin.


It all depends on which kind of bishop's hat we're talking about.
1. The two flaps which hang from a bishop's mitre or the papal tiara are lappets.
2. The"fiocchi" which hang  from a bishop's or a cardinal's broad felt hat ("galero") - that we see on Sede Vacante coins - are tassels.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on October 26, 2009, 11:18:33 am
Grazie Maffeo  ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: rennrad12020 on November 09, 2009, 09:34:04 pm
A recent addition to the collection:

AR GIULIO 26mm INNOCENT XII Rome (12 July 1691-27 September 1700)

Obv: Obv: ∙ INNOCEN ∙ XII. PONT ∙ M ∙ A  ∙ IX ∙
Pignatelli arms with crossed keys and tiara above

Rev: ANNO ∙ IVBEI / LEI ∙ MDCC
Holy door with four Corinthian columns

Nice tone, from Italy; holed

Berman 2255 (CNI 141; S. 104-105; M52)

A Holy Year issue; Innocent's year 9, 1700
 
  I visited the Vatican during a Holy Year (December 2000 after x-mas) and was overwhelmed by the number of people at St. Peter’s. I ended up not going through the doorway and walking around to get inside.   Opportunity lost.

What is depicted inside the door on the reverse? A cloud with rays?

JPW


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on November 10, 2009, 05:38:34 am
Hi Petrus! Definitely a lovely coin, even if it has that... thing...  ;D

Holy Year issues could be a very interesting sub-collection of Papal coins on their own. Urban VIII's testone with Veronica's veil within the door is my current favorite (a coin on which I might spend more than my usual budget, one day). The image pictured on your coin (which is a cloud with rays, by the way) is usually described as "splendori". I guess this is a representation of God's grace coming over the pilgrims begging for "indulgentia plenaria" (not the sins themselves, which are pardoned through confession, but the consequences of sins are removed, and the faithful's bill of N purgatory years is canceled)

P.S. Is the testone mentioned above a Holy Year issue really? Now I'm a bit confused ...


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Arminius on November 12, 2009, 02:23:02 pm
A rather modern medal:

(http://www.arminius-numismatics.com/coppermine1414/cpg1414/albums/userpics/10001/3PopeM.jpg)

Vatican(?), ca. 1963-68 AD.,
Silver Medal (28 mm / 14,86 g),
Obv.: JOHANNES XXIII P. M. - PAULUS VI P. M. + PIUS XII P. M. , three busts facing left.
Rev.: 1000 (indicating pure silver) , 3 papal coats of arms with keys and crosses.
 - Stemma Summi Pontificis Ioannis Papae XXIII: lion of St. Marcus over tower, two fleur de lis. Scutum in inferiore loco rubrum, zona argentea intersectum, quod mediam prae se fert turrim et ex utraque parte argenteum lilium. In superiore loco argenteum, ostendens aligerum leonem S. Marci, nimbo caput circumdatum ac dextro anteriore pede librum sustinentem cum inscriptione: Pax tibi Marce, Evangelista meus. Imminent scuto Claves decussatae ac Tiara de more.
 - Stemma Summi Pontificis Pius PP. XII: dove with branch over water
 - Stemma Summi Pontificis Paulus PP. VI; 3 fleur de lis over ? .

Edge: (blank), no visible designer/issuer mark or signature;

For at least 800 years, each Pope has had his own personal coat of arms that serves as a symbol of his papacy. The first Pope whose arms are known with certainty is Pope Innocent IV (1243-1254). Earlier popes were only attributed arms in the 17th century.
All recent popes' coats of arms contained the image of the papal tiara. Benedict XVI has altered heraldic custom and used instead the mitre and pallium . The papal coat of arms traditionally features a gold and silver key, representing the power to bind and to loose on earth (silver) and in heaven (gold). These are a reference to St Matthew's Gospel, chapter 16, verses 18-19:
    "You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."
Thus in ecclesiastical heraldry, the keys symbolise the spiritual authority of the Papacy as the Vicar of Christ on Earth.

Maybe someone can tell me the cause of the issue and date.  ???

thanks


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: hannibal2 on November 13, 2009, 07:16:51 am
Hello,

Just a small point. I note on the reverse, the business end of the keys is different. Do they change the locks every time there is a new pope?

Seriously now, is there some meaning to it?

Many thanks for a very interesting thread.

br

cr


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Maffeo on November 13, 2009, 07:52:26 am
Seriously now, is there some meaning to it?

no, just different design


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on November 13, 2009, 08:08:16 am
Interesting medal. Doesn't look like an official Vatican issue but is of good quality anyway. I wonder if it can be related to some knightly order, due to the small crosses on reverse that don't look like a papal device to me.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Invictus7 on November 22, 2009, 02:27:48 pm
I've been purchasing papal bulla over the last few years whenever I found one at auction or elsewhere. I have about 12 right now and figured its probably a good time to learn more about them. Does anyone know of a good reference book on the topic?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Paleologo on November 23, 2009, 08:35:25 am
Serafini has a comprehensive catalogue of bullae in the Vatican Coin Cabinet. It's an early XX c. book now hard to find and awfully expensive, but you may be able to find it in some library. Apart from that, I don't know.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Invictus7 on November 24, 2009, 05:29:28 am
Thanks, Paleologo.  I'll keep looking.



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on April 22, 2010, 01:13:59 pm
It's been awhile since anyone has posted on this thread, so I thought I'd put up some pictures of recent purchases. 

I picked up a couple of testoni (I don't know Italian...I guess this is the plural of 'testone') from an Italian dealer on eBay a couple of weeks ago.  None too pretty (in fact the first one is downright ugly), but I was amazed that neither one was pierced or mounted in any way.  Or at least as far as I can tell.

The first is Innocent XI, 1684 (Muntoni 79, Berman 2103, KM 433).  Badly scratched, but worth the $21 I paid for it.

The second one is Clement XII, 1735 (Muntoni 58, Berman 2634, KM 853).  I didn't have a portrait issue of Clement XII in any denomination.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on April 22, 2010, 01:25:33 pm
Another purchase came from a recent Rudolf Künker auction in Germany. 

Hitherto, the only coin of Julius II (1503-1513) I had was a tiny, nearly worn-out billon quattrino (Muntoni 47, Berman 582, Ryan 215:6) I bought from Renaissance Coin Company over 23 years ago.

The Künker auction featured several Giulii of Julius II, so I bid on one.  Much to my surprise and delight, I won!  It's Muntoni 30, Berman 574, Ryan 215:3.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: fossie65 on June 11, 2010, 03:41:21 pm
Hi,i have a coin with benedict 14th and the date 1756 on itvery similar to the coin in the last post,could anyone out there please tell me anything about the coin,and is there any value to it thanks very much.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 11, 2010, 05:39:39 pm
What size is it?  About the size of a US Quarter?  Larger?   Does it have a portrait of the pope on one side?  Or a coat of arms?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: fossie65 on June 12, 2010, 05:02:45 am
about the size of a british ten pence,on one side is pope benedict 14th and the other a figure holding keys i suppose the keys to st peters gate ,and there is a halo around the figure.with a tower with a dome roof and a doorway on the right hand side of the coin ,thanks for your response.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 12, 2010, 07:37:15 am
Sounds like you have a doppio guilio, or double-guilio coin, 1/5 of a Scudo. 

The actual value of it would depend on how worn it is, any damage (like a hole), etc.

A piece with an average amount of wear, and not holed or otherwise damaged--would probably fetch £15-20, more if the condition is better--on eBay.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: fossie65 on June 12, 2010, 09:18:15 am
thankyou very much for your time and effort .most helpfull.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on October 02, 2010, 11:07:40 am
I thought I would revive this thread with my latest acquisition of a Papal medal, shown below. It is a medal of Innocentius XI ( Benedetto Odescalchi) who was Pope from 1676 to 1689. It is referenced as number 326 in Mazio's catalog.

I was somewhat baffled by the apparent pagan symbolism in it: the constellation of Leo flanked by Cancer and Virgo; imperial eagle above and lamp below, all surrounded by the legend DIVINÆ NVNCIA MENTIS ("Messenger of the Divine Mind"). Thankfully, I found an explanation in the Roma Resurgens catalog by Nathan Whitman:

"The somewhat arcane religious-humanistic conceit embodied on this medal is a typical product of a certain type of traditional learning that florished in seventeenth-century Rome. At the top the very Roman eagle represents the constellation Aquila in the northern heavens while at the bottom is the constellation crater from the southern hemisphere. In the center lies a section of the Zodiac: leo flanked by the signs of Cancer and Virgo. The key to the whole emblem is that, vertically, eagle, lion and cup comprise the coat of arms of Innocent's family, the Odescalchi. For the theologians of the papal court this conjunction of the new pope's heraldic devices with three constellations encompassing the entire celestial sphere was no fortunate accident but constituted an inherent proof of the universality of papal authority in the most literal sense. [...]"

I thought it was quite interesting!

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Robert_Brenchley on October 03, 2010, 03:27:29 pm
And that, of course, was in a time when the sphere of Papal authority had been cut back significantly by the Reformation, and they were feeling it!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Arminius on October 04, 2010, 03:42:57 pm
Ahh, finally Reformation arrived in the dusty papal corner, freedom of belief!

An interesting chronogram dated medal:

(http://www.arminius-numismatics.com/coppermine1414/cpg1414/albums/userpics/10001/MLu1717.jpg)

Germany, Reformation 1517 Bicentenary Medal, engraver P. H. Müller, Nuremberg, 1717 AD.,
Silver Medal (32 mm / 14,00 g),
Obv.: MartInVs LVtherVs theoLogIae DoCt / M , Luther bust r., chronogram date - MIVLVVLIDCT ( 1000+1+5+50+5+5+50+1+500+100=1717 ) - in legends, engraver's initial M (P. H. Müller) in left base of bust.
Rev.: foLIVM eIVs neC DefLVet // IN MEMORIAM / IVBILÆI EVANGELICI / SECVNDI • D • 31 • OCT • / * , above and beneath palmtree, in background landscape with river.
Forster 807 ; coll. Whiting 226 ; Belli 1900 ; Schnell 158 ; ANS 1936.999.174 .

 :angel:


Title: Benedict XIV baiocco unlisted in Muntoni (sort of)
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on November 21, 2010, 01:38:41 pm
I just received a pretty inexpensive and somewhat beat-up Baiocco of Gubbio that I ordered from eBay.

It should be listed under Muntoni 453, but doesn't quite fit the varieties and subvarieties listed there.

For those who don't have Muntoni, here's a rundown of the text for Benedict XIV #453 (Vol. 3, p. 228):

453. Æ - Baiocco
D - Stemma piccolo a targa sagomata con fogliami, chavi tipo I con cordoni e fiocchi
    - (s) BENEDICTVS -- XIV•P•M•AN•X•
R - * || VN || BAIOCCO || GVBBIO || 1750 in corona c. s.
     SER, 548
Var. I - al R: (fleur) || VN || ... (CNI, 97)
Var. II - al R: VN || ... (CNI, 94)
a) AN•X• /1751, al R, (fleur) || VN || ... (CNI, 113)
a, Var. I) A•X•/1751, al R: VN || ... (CNI, 115)


Where my coin differs is that the obverse legend is more like the 453a Var. I, except that mine is dated 1750, not 1751.  Just the single letter "A" for ANNO, not "AN".

Also, on the reverse above "VN", there appears to be a dot...not a fleur-de-lis, and not a star. That detail is pretty worn (and only barely visible in the attached photo), so that could conceivably be a star that has worn down to look like a dot, though it is pretty circular...





Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on December 08, 2010, 06:11:57 am
I picked up this medal from eBay...

It's clearly the same type as the official Anno I medal of Paul VI, but instead of being 44mm, my example illustrated here is 34mm.  Also the rims are much broader than the 44mm version.  Other than that, both medals share the same design, and both have the incuse silver fineness mark (985).  My medal weighs 15.3g.

I have looked in the 2007 Montenegro book, and Sadow-Sarrow The Coins and Medals of the Vatican (1977).  Neither list a 34mm version.    I don't have the DeLuca (what is the title?) book....

Does anyone have any information on this medal?  Why is there a 34mm version when 44mm seems to be the standard official medal module?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on December 09, 2010, 01:59:31 am
Nice medal, very finely toned. I don't know if you've checked the lamoneta.it catalog, but just in case, here's a link:
http://numismatica-italiana.lamoneta.it/cat/W-F211

It does show both a 50 mm and a 33 mm medals with the same design as yours. I'm not sure why they come in two sizes, but maybe someone in that forum can answer you.

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on December 09, 2010, 06:08:58 am
Thanks for the information.  I didn't realize the la.moneta site covered medals in addition to coins!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Rugser on December 17, 2010, 04:45:45 pm
Pope Gregorius XI _ bolognino _ Roma mint ?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on December 28, 2010, 05:48:02 pm
Yes, that's exactly right.   It's a bolognino romano of Gregory XI, of the Rome mint.

Berman 208
Muntoni 9



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on June 04, 2011, 09:16:41 am
I've recently added two medals to my Papal collection of historical significance, and I wanted to share them here. The theme of both is Death, so I found it appropriate to show them together.

The first one reflects the well-known massacre of the huguenots in France in 1572, a tragic event happily commemorated by the newly elected Pope, who considered the killing as just punishment by God to the heretics. Indeed, the angel bearing the cross and the sword indicated that the papacy regarded the deaths as a divine act!

Bust left, with camauro and mozzetta.
GREGORIVS XIII PONT MAX AN I
VGONOTTORVM STRAGES 1572
Angel with cross and sword over dead and dying huguenots.
11.72 gr; 30 mm
Engraved by Federigo Parmense

The second medal was issued in 1657. I also shows an angel, this time triumphant over Death. It apparently refers to the end of the pestilence that raged Rome in 1656, although I would certainly welcome more information on it, as well as the translation of the legend!

Bust left, with camauro and mozzetta.
ALEXAN VII PONT MAX A III
POPVLVM RELIGIONE TVETVR
Angel leaning on a cross, holding open book, stepping on skeleton representing death.
21.34 gr; 34.3 mm
Engraved by Gaspare Morone

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: rennrad12020 on June 10, 2011, 06:48:33 pm
     Beautiful medals! 

The second medal, Spink 1171, I would translate the legend: He protects/guards the people with religion


JPW

P.S. I think the Papal Corner should be a sticky thread.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: rennrad12020 on June 10, 2011, 10:17:46 pm
Here is a little more background information I tracked down in the Jesuit Buonanni's work,

Buonanni, Filippo. Numismata pontificum romanorum qvae a tempore Martini V usque ad annum M.DC.XCIX. vel authoritate publica, vel privato genio in lucem prodiere, ... Volume 2. Romae, 1699

Vol.2 p.469

Here is a loose translation of some of Buonanni’s commentary of your second medal and another reverse referring to the plague that struck Rome in 1656.  Ut umbra illius liberarentur (X and XI on the plate)

When a pestilence overtook the city at the beginning of the year, Alexander left for Naples, and was not persuaded by the populus to remain.  Quoting Ennius, as he was accustomed to do, Alexander said, non ponendos rumores ante salutem , don’t put common opinions before health. The pestilence ravaged the city, etc.

Perhaps the most salient point is that the angel holds a bridle in her right hand which Buonanni states is an allegory of religio =  the reins, fraenum, of the people, both mild and agreeable.

I would like to collect these medals someday myself. Interesting historically and usually rendered very artistically.  

JPW


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on June 11, 2011, 02:09:03 am
Thank you for your translation and the useful information. In the Oxford Dictionary of Popes there is no mention of the plague, so the only pieces of background info I had found were online.

I agree these medals are very artistic. In fact, I understand engravers were 'official' artists and their work highly appreciated. I wanted to collect Papal coins at first, but as this is only a side collection for me (so far...), I found medals more affordable. And once I had the first one in hand, I was hooked!

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 12, 2011, 01:11:12 pm
While your particular medal of Alexander VII isn't listed, there is another medal listed in Roma Resurgens: Papal Medals from the Age of the Baroque (a book I highly recommend). Here's the quote from page 97:

"No disease was more widespread or dreaded in seventeenth-century Europe than the plague.  Epidemics spread from London to Naples, and Rome was fortunate in being less frequently and less severely afflicted than many cities.  The worst came in May 1656 when an outbreak that had already devastated Naples suddenly appeared in Rome.  To his credit, Alexander handled the situation with deft administrative skill and real human sympathy.  He immediately left Castel Gandolfo upon hearing the news and returned to Rome, where he took measures to safeguard the city.  He organized a special health commission, restricted entry through the city gates, isolated quarters of the city, required registration of all cases, closed schools, screened confessionals, and established special hospitals, sanitariums, and burial places for the victims.  Despite these efforts and his own courage in taking to the streets to reassure the public, Rome lost 15,000 people, or one-eighth of its population, in a year's time.  The issuance of this medal [not yours, but the one cited in the book] on June 20, 1657 came just as the pestilence ended."

Your medal is listed as Mazio 255 in A Pictorial Catalogue of Papal Medals 1417-1942 as Struck by the Mint of Rome for the Vatican

Your Gregory XIII medal is listed as Mazio 110 in the same book.



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on June 12, 2011, 05:00:42 pm
Thanks again! I do have 'Roma Resurgens', but as I didn't see my medal listed there, I guess I didn't read the text of the other Alexander VII medals! I have looked it up now for my notes.

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on July 11, 2011, 10:56:31 am


I recently bought a Quattrino of Ancona for the sede vacante of 1585, Muntoni 3, CNI 2.  The last sale record I have of this coin

is Kunst & Muntzen,  Sale Catalog of July 1979, No. 438.  It was advertised at 125 lire (sic) in very fine. 

Has anyone else seen anything from the vacancy of 1585, the one between Gregory 13 and Sixtus 5. 

Sixtus, a creation of Pius V, who detested Gregory(He was the last pope to have an official bastard, a son who served

quite honorably in the Swiss Guard.).  Gregory in turn detestedCardinal Felice Peretti, who never showed up at court

during Gregory's 13 year reign.  Peretti was elected Sixtus 5, because (1)no other cardinal had the vaguest idea who

he was (son of a vegetable grower) and (2) he looked so old that he might not even not survive his own coronation.

   

Follibus Faniticus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on July 14, 2011, 01:06:41 am
Great to see you're back on the board, sir! I've learnt much from Papal numismatics from this thread since I discovered it a couple of years ago, so for me it's great news to see you active again.

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on July 23, 2011, 03:42:14 pm
Welcome back, John!

Unfortunately, I'm still working through the 17th Century with the sede vacante pieces myself.

In fact, the only sede vacante I have prior to 1669-1670 (between Clements IX and X) is one from the Long Conclave of 1268-71...

Oh, and best of luck with your book.  "Eagerly anticipated" is a fair enough phrase!  :-)



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Sverige6 on August 27, 2011, 06:43:16 am

I'm looking for identifications and info about a recent papal medal which seems not to common on the following thread if anyone could help me:

http://www.forumancientcoins.com/board/index.php?topic=73927.0


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on December 30, 2011, 12:42:26 pm
Just bought an interesting variety of Sampietrino (2½ Baiocchi) of Foligno.

Interesting since none of the usual references (Berman, KM, Muntoni, Eklund, Craig) mention it at all.

The mint-name is misspelled.  The usual spelling for this type is FVLIGNO.   However mine, though badly worn, is clearly spelled FVLIGNIO.  Was the engraver in too much of a hurry?  This variety also has an additional star under the date, which is also something Muntoni ordinarily would list, but does not.

Anyway, in order to find a listing for this, I had to go back to my old friend, Angelo Cinagli (Le Monete Dei Papi [1848]).  This variety IS listed there, as #457 under Pius VI.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner. A reply to Alex B.
Post by: Follibus Fanaticus on February 16, 2012, 01:18:38 am
I received a nice E-mail from Alex B, who has started to collect papal medals from the 16th to 18th Centuries.  He asked me to post my medals from that epoch, but I only have coins from those years.  I have used medals to fill the gap between 1870 and 1928.  I have a large silver medal issued from the Rome mint under Victor Emmanuel III.  That king, who wrote, yes wrote, CNI, resumed the annual papal medals in 1900.  The king issued for Leo XIII, Pius X, and Benedict XV, who issued no coins.  [Pius IX issued coins till 1870; Pius XI started his coinage in 1929].  I have a Benedict XV medal in silver from the Rome mint.

Official medals are usually gold [I have a gold John XXIII], silver. or copper with no lead mixed in.
 
In the United States, collectors of papal medals are rare; in Europe papal medals have been avidly collected for centuries.  Some auction catalogs of papal numismatics have as many pages devoted to medals as they have devoted to coins.  Europeans like them, because most popes liked art and demanded medals of great beauty. While official medals are of high quality and great beauty, many of the imitations struck for tourists are of low quality.  Buyer beware.  If  I can get a heavy "knock off," I use it as a paper weight.  Knock offs are mostly copper or lead, and they are mostly poured, not struck. [Note:  A few early --15th and 16th centuries were poured.]

Good tobe back,

Follibus Fanatacus


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on February 16, 2012, 04:53:17 am
I'm planning on posting a few of the medals I have to Alex B's page, but I have a question...

Follibus, you say that King Victor Emmanuel III started striking papal medals again in 1900, but what of the medals struck from 1871 - 1899?  There are annual papal medals for every year in that period. 

On whose authority were they struck?  Or are they post-1900 creations, backdated to cover the declining years of Pius IX and most of Leo XIII's pontificate?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on February 29, 2012, 03:21:00 pm
I just took a look at this webpage:
http://www.zeno.ru/showgallery.php?cat=5315

Now the Zeno.ru site is primarily devoted to coins of east Asia and the Islamic world (and as such, it is a great site for use in identifying these coins).  

What surprised me, though, was this particular section which shows twelve different Papal coins from the ultra rare AD 657-983 period.  Decent, high-quality color photographs too.  Definitely worth a look.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: AlexB on March 01, 2012, 03:37:58 am
Hi

I just saw this and I wondered if something you interested in?

If yes, ask me for details.

Brgds

Alex


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on November 24, 2012, 09:34:37 pm
I just ran across this board and thought share one of my favorite coins.  The arms on the obverse just seem classic for the period to me.  Its a mezzo or half piastra of Innocent XI, Muntoni 53.

By way of introduction, I have a general papal/Vatican collection of both coins and medals since 1417.  Actually more medals than coins it seems.  A couple of areas of special interest to me: coins of 1650-1700, a silver medal of each pope since 1417, and a silver annual medal set since 1800 (still several to go on that one, esp the Sedes)


 ;D



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on November 24, 2012, 09:52:08 pm
Another mezzo, this time dated to year 3 and 1693 of Innocent XII.  Muntoni 34. I always liked the imagery of this coin maybe because my understanding is that the symbolism of the pelican of self sacrifice was based on a misunderstanding of what the pelican was actually doing.  

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on December 10, 2012, 08:26:50 am
The unusually dated Sede Vacante of 155V was mentioned in an earlier post on this thread and I thought I'd share the example I've owned for a while.  I think its a variety of Muntoni 2 (at least it better matches the picture) and Berman 1030. The coin was mounted at some point, but seems to be otherwise intact and was a perfectly acceptable addition for me. I always found the dating to be a bit of a mystery since it clearly didn't save space and both forms of the date were used.  There were two Sedes in 1555, bookending the short reign of Marcellus II, but the references don't seem to distinguish the issues.  

    


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on December 12, 2012, 08:52:26 am
Nice coins, all.  I've always wondered myself why they included both "arabic" and Roman numerals in the date.


I'm not familiar with any reference that differentiates between the two Sede Vacantes of 1555--Cardinal Sforza was Camerlengo for both.

Or for that matter, the two sede vacantes of 1590 (Caetani was Camerlengo for both) or for 1605 (Aldobrandini for both).

Which is a shame.  But considering the very brief pontificates that precipitated these sede vacantes, it's hard to imagine the engravers having much time--or much desire--to prepare new dies, given that the Camerlengos were still the same person anyway.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on December 22, 2012, 03:55:32 pm
I haven't posted in a long time, but I thought this latest acquisition of mine deserved it. It is only my second piastra, a type of coin that has become kind of an obsession for me in the last few months! This one is actually quite rare, judging by Berman's valuation, so I'm very proud of it even though it has some marks on the Pope's face and traces of mounting.

INNOCEN XII PON M A II (signed HAMERANVS)
SEDEBIT IN PVLCHRITVDINE PACIS
Throne of St Peter, radiant, supported by angels
Berman 2231

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on December 22, 2012, 04:51:21 pm
A wonderful example of Baroque art, in addition to being a great coin!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on December 23, 2012, 02:45:17 am
Thank you. I think so too. As I said, papal piastre have become a key feature in my coin collecting.

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on December 23, 2012, 07:51:16 am
Really nice big baroque papal silvers are always a show stopper.  Congrats on a great pickup!

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on December 23, 2012, 03:57:33 pm
Thank you, stl. It looks as if you have a great papal collection, of which I wouldn't mind seeing more! I've only just started here, and so far, I think I'll stick with piastre.

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on December 24, 2012, 12:27:33 am
YW and TY silvernut.  

I've not imaged a lot of my baroque coins, but have a few images I can cobble together and share.  Here's one of my favs, another mezzo of Innocent XII.  It took me a couple of shots to get an acceptable (to me) example of the interesting type.  Many years ago, there was maybe the best of these I've seen in a Joe Lepczek auction and the late George Beach offered to bid for me.  My bid, which was several times the estimate and really more than I could afford at the time, was the underbidder.  Sigh.  I encountered a couple of others, lower grades with flan issues until I finally snagged this more than acceptable example a few years ago.  I never tire looking at this coin.  The ailing, aged pope is masterfully executed on the obverse and mated with the unique type of Noah's ark making landfall on Mt Ararat on the reverse.  Not quite as nice as the first I'd went after, but perfectly acceptable and about a third of my original bid so not a bad consolation prize.

Sorry the image isn't better, but its what I have at hand and hope I can image and share more after the holidays. 

 ;D



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on December 24, 2012, 12:44:56 am
Getting late so the last for tonight.  Actually one of the first baroque coins I bought at one of the first coin shows my late wife and I attended together.  Nice Piastre of Innocent XII, with St Peter peaching on the reverse.  It was mounted at one point but that was softened a bit by the low price and the nice condition made it impossible to pass up.  It was a nice way to get introduced to this wonderful period of papal numismatic art.

BTW, the SV on both this and the previous coin indicate the work of the great papal engraver, Ferdinand de St Urbain.

Again apologies; not the best pic, but handy...

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on December 24, 2012, 03:08:25 am
Great, thanks for sharing! I like the Noah's ark reverse very much, even though it's "only" a mezza piastra... There was one for sale at a recent Italian auction and I was very tempted to bid, but I thought the opening price was just above what I wanted to pay.

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on January 18, 2013, 10:14:21 am
I was delighted to hear that I'd snagged a couple of new baroque coins in the CNG auction that ended earlier this week.  Baroque can be defined as various ways, but I consider it to be second half of the 17th century, ending with the death of Innocent XII in 1700.  In many ways this is the apex of traditional papal coinage, IMHO of course, with a wonderfully diverse and skillfully executed range of designs and themes.

For me, some of the most interesting coins were issued under Innocent XI, who reformed the coinage in July, 1684.  He standardized the designs of many of the coins and none is a better example than the testones issued from 1684 to his death in 1689.  All had the same basic design: papal coat of arms on the obverse, and the legend Melius Est Dare Quam Accipere ('tis better to give than to receive) on the reverse.  Within these parameters the die cutters had amazing latitude in executing their designs, and Muntoni's  La Monete Dei Papo e Degli Stati Pontifici lists no less than 90 unique types that were issued during these 5 years.  I have 25 or so thus far including the two from CNG.  What makes these particularly interesting to me is that they are dated on the obverse, above the coat of arms in tiny little numbers.  Only 5 of the 90 listings had obverse dates, and frankly I was unaware of this interesting dating until I saw these so I was willing to "reach" a bit for these.  The date sort of muddles up the obverse design which I'd guess is why it was used on only a few early types. 

Its always fun to learn something new about a series you thought you knew!

Scans are from CNG's listings.

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: curtislclay on January 18, 2013, 10:30:29 am
Attractive coins and interesting background information!

So the 90 different types consisted of just different frames around the rev. inscription?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on January 18, 2013, 10:41:41 am
that, and the manner in which the arms are displayed on the obverse....shape of the shield, the configuration of the ropes that are attached to the keys, etc.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on January 18, 2013, 10:45:52 am
So the 90 different types consisted of just different frames around the rev. inscription?

TY Curtis.

"Just"  ?!?!?!  LOL, a dangerous question for a potentially OCD collector!

But actually, the answer is yes.  There are some "mules" where the same obverse or reverse die was mated with more than 1 opposite die, but the difference is basically different intrepretations of the arms or reverse.  And there are different dates, but those seem almost secondary.  Allen Berman provides 7 numbers to the type, distinguished by the reverse legend in cartouche, additions of seraphs, laurel wreath, rectangular plaque, ornamental wreath, double hexagon, and palm wreath altho these only scratch the surface of the varieties.

edited to add: subtle varieties of early US coinage, esp cents and half dollars, have been avidly collected for years - viz the multiple Shelton and Overton numbers, respectively, for each date.  Never could really get into those, but these varieties are much more evident and much more fun for me.    

Here's another that I found in my files...need to make a gallery when I can scan more I guess.

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: curtislclay on January 18, 2013, 10:57:40 am
Thanks for the response and the additional picture.

I was wondering what the date would look like on the reverse; it doesn't interfere as much as I thought it might.

What is an "OCD collector"? I only known that for Oxford Classical Dictionary!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on January 18, 2013, 11:09:24 am
If you notice, the third one I posted has dates on both sides: papal year on the obverse (Anno VIII) and the arabic date on the reverse.  I do agree that the date does seem to work fine on the reverse.  However, several varieties are undated or only have the regnal date on the obverse.  I've been very fortunate to pick up many of the more interesting varieties, and the variety exhibited by what is basically the same design is always a joy to behold.

Also, I tend to be an "eye appeal" vs technical grade collector and it occurs that this series seems to really reward that preference.  Often the geometric designs on a nicely toned VF can be just as appealing as these higher grade examples.  

edited to add: OCD - obsessive compulsive disorder.  Mostly tongue in check and only a minor tendency in my case, I think, but it does make finding varieties a real pleasure.  BTW, I also "do" folles of RIC VI.  I've always considered RIC as a bit of a checklist so you can see how this can get out of control unless reined in periodically. (also LOL, well mostly).    

 ;D

  


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on January 19, 2013, 12:06:36 pm
Didn't see your coins yesterday. Once again, very nice, the 3 of them!! I saw the CNG testoni (is this the correct plural?), but I am currently focused only on piastre, so I'm glad to say I didn't make you pay more by bidding on them!

Anyway, congratulations, and thank you for the interesting info. I still got much to learn about Papal coinage.

Regards,
Ignasi



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on January 19, 2013, 01:36:48 pm
Thanks Ignasi, and I'm glad you didn't make me pay more for them too!  CNG had 4 of this general type, two I already owned so was able to focus on the two obverse dated ones which frankly were new to me too.  I like your comment: "I still got much to learn about Papal coinage."  Altho a newby to this group, papal/vatican has been a long term, but frankly secondary, interest; but I learned something new with these two coins and its clear that your comment applies perfectly well to me also!

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on January 19, 2013, 02:10:32 pm
2013 has started out with a bang for my papal/vatican collection. In addition to the testones (or is it testoni - that just doesn't quite sound right to me but I'm a midwesterner so the nuance may elude me), my cunning strategy of whining and annoying people finally paid off and I just received the annual medal for 2012, year 8 of the current pope. Its actually a nicely done design, much better than that for 2011. Like many earlier medals, it also commemorates an important event for the year, the XIII General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops held during October 2012. The subject of the Synod was "The New Evangelization for the Transmission of the Christian Faith" and I think that the reverse nicely fits with the theme.

As with other years the mintage was 1000 in gold and 6000 each in silver and bronze. Attached is an image of the medal I shamelessly lifted from an Italian discussion forum I came across after googling some of the key words from the insert included with the medal.  The forum also provided the technical info from the official announcement which I translated using Babelfish and Goggle translate. Not 100% translations, but more than adequete to get the gist of what's going on...

On the reverse: around the word SYNODUS EPISCOPORUM XIII COETUS GENERALIS and the biblical quote "SICUT MISIT ME PATER, ET EGO MITTO VOS " (Jn 20, 21 "Just as the Father has sent me, so send I you" ). At the center, the portrait of Christ Pantocrator, Byzantine mosaic in Palatina Chapel of the Palazzo Reale in Palermo, 12TH-14th century. The image of Christ Pantocrator, "he who governs the entire universe", is the universal message of faith in Jesus Christ, the first Evangelizer and revelation of God. He blesses with the three fingers of the right hand, symbolizing the Holy Trinity. The book of life held in the left hand brings the verse of Chapter 12. 8 of John's Gospel "I am the light of the world. Those who follow me, won't walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."

While the reverse is admittedly a bit cluttered, I very much like the use of earlier iconography on later coins and medals so the thing "works" for me and I think its a reasonable effort overall.

Hope this isn't too far off topic for the group.  One of the attractions of the Papal/Vatican series is that current issues continue to reflect a tradition dating back hundreds of years.  Some themes and ideas are recycled, but with new eyes, context and intrepretation to keep them up to date.  

What fun!   ;D



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on January 20, 2013, 11:57:26 am
What an interesting thread!  Stlnats informed me of the friendly discussion over here and I figured I'd join in.  It's great to see some other collectors of papal material, and I look forward to viewing the coins and medals posted and contributing where possible.

I personally collect papal medals of the Renaissance and Baroque eras, which I define to cover the popes from Nicholas V through Clement XII (1455-1740).  To start, I'll share one of my favorite medals:

(http://www.papalmedals.org/pics/2010062902.jpg)
Gilt Bronze, 56.5 mm Ø, 52.3 g

Obverse: Bust of Julius II facing right, bareheaded and wearing a cope decorated with arabesques and icons. Around, IVLIVS · LIGVR · PAPA · SECVNDVS · MCCCCCVI ("Julius II, Ligurian, Pope, 1506").

Reverse: A shepherd, seated on a stone under an oak tree, pointing his flock of sheep towards a path leading to a gateway to an enclosure on a mountain. Around, PEDO SERVATAS OVES AD REQVIEM AGO ("The sheep that were preserved by the staff I lead to their repose").

Cast medal by Caradosso Foppa commemorating the foundation ceremony for the new St. Peter's Basilica. This is a sister medal to the more famous version showing Bramante's design for the new basilica. Modesti suggests that the version showing the building was created to serve as the foundation medal, while this version with an allegorical representation was intended to be distributed in commemoration of the laying of the first stone. The reverse illustration can be viewed as the Pope (represented by the shepherd) indicating to the faithful (the sheep) the new erection of the basilica on the Vatican Hill. The staff referred to in the reverse inscription takes on the dual meaning of a shepherd's staff and a pastoral staff. That the shepherd represents the Pope is further reinforced by the oak tree under which he sits, which is a symbol of the della Rovere family of which Julius (born Giuliano della Rovere) was from. The Italian word "rovere" literally means "oak tree".

Julius II undertook to rebuild the original St. Peter's Basilica which had been erected by the emperor Constantine. Ideas had been considered during the pontificate of Nicholas V for renovating the original structure, which had fallen into ruinous shape, but Julius decided to entirely demolish it and build a new basilica. The design and construction was entrusted to the architect Donato Bramante, who drew plans for a Greek style (square) church topped by a large dome. The first stone was laid by Julius during a ceremony on April 18, 1506. Construction on the basilica would proceed for over a century, passing through the hands of many architects and popes. In the end, the final basilica retains virtually nothing of Bramante's original design.

References: C.N.O.R.P. 188; Toderi-Vannel 11; Venuti XVII


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on January 20, 2013, 04:36:10 pm
Welcome, Iosephus! And what a great medal, too, which I had never seen before! Apart from Roman denarii, I collect Papal medals, and have recently just ventured into the world of piastre. Good to see other people with whom to share these items.

I don't have much time now, but I'll share one of the latest medals I have purchased (I might have shown it here at FORVM already, I don't recall now). It commemorates the Holy League established in 1684 between the Holy See, Poland, Austria and Venice, and it does so by iconically depicting the 4 crowns of the powers represented. A great Hamerani opus, in my opinion.

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on January 20, 2013, 11:44:38 pm
Hey Joe, great to see you made it, hope you find it as positive an experience as I.  There is a great deal of knowledge/experience in this group and folks have been friendly and helpful.  I've already learned a lot by just reading thru the earlier posts. 

Nifty medals too - Joe and Ignasi. 

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on January 21, 2013, 08:46:09 am
Ignasi, nice medal!  The Hamerani family sure made a whole bunch of medals, and this one's got some great detail on it!

Stlnats, thanks again for letting me know about this discussion!  I too have learned a great deal about the older papal coins from reading through this thread.  It's too bad that John C. Ryan does not post here anymore.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on January 21, 2013, 09:01:17 am
In addition to the coins and medals I have, I also have a small collection of what I call "pendant medallions", the kind that are sold to tourists in Rome (and other places) in gift shops, etc. as devotional items, or souvenirs of their visit.

Usually undated, and made of base metal (typically brass, I suppose) plated with a very thin wash of silver.  Also, they're almost always provided with a loop for hanging as a pendant.  Most of what I have are items that family and friends have brought back home after visiting Rome.  

I've been scanning and adding these items to the LaMoneta website over the last several days.    http://numismatica-italiana.lamoneta.it/cat/W-F

This one, however, is a bit of an anomaly.  It's unofficial, and silver-plated.  But it's also nearly 50mm and over 69 grams--much too big and heavy for hanging around the neck.  And it lacks the loop to do so, anyway.   Looks like it was issued to commemorate the election of Bl. John XXIII in 1958.  

I like the engraving of Christ as the Good Shepherd handing the Keys to Peter in front of the rest of the Apostles, with the dome of St. Peter's Basilica in the background.

Apologies for the poor quality of the scans...the medal is in such high relief that my scanner has a hard time focusing...


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on January 21, 2013, 11:28:27 am
Pabst,

Your John 23rd is listed in Calo's "Le Medaglie del Vaticano" as 42bis.  Its a "probalimente" attribution, " assigned to Giampaoli for the election of J 23rd.  It was privately produced by Sensi in Milan, whose inscription should be at the end of the legend in small letters.  Calo indicates that the medal is known in silver and bronze and is 60mm; their color illustration shows a nice looking bronze. 

I don't seek out unofficials, but several have found their way to me and I think I've seen similarly privately produced medals of large size (but not this design) with a silver wash on base medal which I always assumed provided a lower price point for budget minded souvenir hunters, tourists and collectors.  Quality varies  from close to official to almost laughable. 

I assume these are listed in Modesti's "Catalogo le Medaglie di Papa Giovanni 23°" but I don't have a copy since its beyond the scope of my interest.  I've seen privately assembled "mint sets," some in red cards similar to that used officially. using these types of medals sometimes as a substitute for the 500 Lire silver.   And these unofficials seem to provide a perennial issue for casual collectors since limited info is widely availabe, at least in the US.

I do like your idea of a "pendant medallions" collection.  Often these are well executed and copy "official designs."  Would like to see others as you have a chance.

 ;D
 

 


   


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on January 21, 2013, 03:57:15 pm
Pabst,

As a follow up to stlnats's post, this medal is listed in Modesti's volume as #10, and he illustrates a 49.6 mm bronze specimen from the Vatican collection.  Modesti attributes the medal as the work of Enrico Manfrini, not Pietro Giampaoli.  This makes sense, since the style seems radically different than the medals of Giampaoli I have seen, especially compared to Giampaoli's own (official) medals for John XXIII's election.

The design is quite nice, expecially for an unofficial medal, and is certainly much better than most of the smaller medals peddled to tourists.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on January 25, 2013, 05:56:26 am
My medal is definitely 49.8mm, not 60mm.  Weight is 69g.

Next to Christ's arm on the reverse (roughly at 3 o'clock), there is the word ITALY and a small shield with the letters E S and M inside.  Would that be the 'signature' of Manfrini?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on January 25, 2013, 06:07:21 am
Here's another of my "pendant medallions".  This one is a very faithful redux of the official medal for Holy Year 1950, only in much smaller (and wearable!) 22mm size, and with an integral loop.   The silver plate here seems quite a bit thicker than the usual vaguely-silver wash. 


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on January 25, 2013, 05:33:31 pm
Next to Christ's arm on the reverse (roughly at 3 o'clock), there is the word ITALY and a small shield with the letters E S and M inside.  Would that be the 'signature' of Manfrini?

Modesti only notes the word ITALY and that the mark of Senesi di Milano is next to it.  Presumably that is the shield.  I cannot make out any letters, but E S M could possibly have something to do with Senesi di Milano (I don't know what the E would stand for)

FYI, the Pius XII pendant you posted is assigned number 79 in the Cusumano-Modesti volume "Pio XII Nella Medaglia".  Interestingly, it lists only silver and gold (!) versions.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on January 26, 2013, 02:05:19 pm
Thanks for the attribution!  

Does anyone know where I can get a copy of Modesti's Corpus Numismatum Omnium Romanorum Pontificum (C.N.O.R.P.), Volume I here in the US (or will ship to the US)?


Here's another Holy Year pendant medallion, this time from 1925, also commemorating the Canonization of St. Teresa of the Child Jesus...


the scratches in the reverse field was an ill-advised attempt at "improving" it, when I was kid...after I had already scratched MCM XXV there.  Yeh, I know....it was stupid.

Aluminum, 1.9g, 26.5mm


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on January 26, 2013, 05:09:07 pm
FYI, the Pius XI medalet was designed by Egidio Boninsegna and engraved by Filipo Lorioli and was struck by the firm Lorioli & Castelli of Milan.  It is listed as number 129 in the Cusumano-Modesti Pio XI volume.

Unfortunately, I can't help with your search for a copy of CNORP Vol. I.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on January 27, 2013, 08:02:13 am
Thanks again Iosephus!

Here's another pendant medallion, this time of Bl. Pius IX, commemorating his 50th episcopal anniversary (1877).  The reverse is what is called a Miraculous Medal, and the inscription (roughly) translates to "Mary, conceived without Original Sin, pray for us".

brass, 3.13g, oval, 19.1mm x 23.5mm


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on January 28, 2013, 09:44:04 am
Another one, with a similar reverse theme, is this pendant medallion of Leo XIII.

brass, 20mm, 3.2g


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on January 29, 2013, 07:21:44 am
An interesting papal "twofer" arrived yesterday, part of my continuing education about this interesting area.

At first glance, its a sede vacante of 1691.  However, it is also the annual medal for 1691.  Annuals were, and continue to be, distributed on the feast day of Saints Peter and Paul, June 29th.  Alexander VIII had died on February 1st and a new pope, Innocent XII, was not elected until July 12th so it was appropriate that the annual medal reflect the interregnum.  

While I was generally aware of these, it was not until I started to research this medal that I better appreciated how the dates impacted types.  For instance, althought it spanned parts of three calendar years, only a single annual medal was issued during Alexander VIII's reign, in 1690, since he was not elected untl October of 1689.  Similarly, Innocent's first annual was issued the year after his election in 1692.  

Similar Sede/Annuales were issued during 1730, 1740 and 1758.  

As I understand it, Modesti indicates 56 gold and 67 silvers were distributed at the time, altho the totals of originals was slightly higher at 60 and 100 respectively.  This is a very nice, but not particularly early, bronze restrike but certainly works for me.

References are:
  • Miselli (1669-1700) 288
  • Modesti (Annuale) 168
  • Boccia (Sede Vacante) 17

Still having a bit of a problem with scanning bronzes, but hope this will suffice.

What fun!   ;D
    


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on January 30, 2013, 09:09:45 am
That's a great piece--thanks for sharing!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on January 30, 2013, 07:48:00 pm
Some nice pieces, Pabst and stlnats!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on January 30, 2013, 09:01:33 pm
Thanks for the positive comments.  Joe was kind enough to remind me that the 4 gold and 33 silvers not distributed on the feast day were returned for melting; in rereading my original I realized that it wasn't clear on this point.  Thanks for having my back!


 ;D  


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on January 31, 2013, 08:36:31 am
Thanks Iosephus! 

Are either of the two "miraculous medals" I displayed (for Pius IX and for Leo XIII) listed in any of the Cusumano-Modesti volumes?


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on January 31, 2013, 09:42:27 am
Are either of the two "miraculous medals" I displayed (for Pius IX and for Leo XIII) listed in any of the Cusumano-Modesti volumes

My understanding is that the 4 volumes of the Cusumano-Modesti work starts with Pius X and Benedict (volume 1) and runs thru John 23 in volume 4 so they wouldn't be covered there.

I did a quick scan of Martini's Catalogo delle Medaglie.V. Secoli XVIII-XIX, but it doesn't seem to cover these altho there are several looped medallions listed.  Except for Martini, Rinaldi and the Annuali volumes, I don't have great coverage of Pius IX or Leo in my library tho.

 

 


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on January 31, 2013, 09:49:53 am
Thanks for taking a look...much appreciated!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on January 31, 2013, 11:48:07 am
My understanding is that the 4 volumes of the Cusumano-Modesti work starts with Pius X and Benedict (volume 1) and runs thru John 23 in volume 4 so they wouldn't be covered there.

Just a minor point, technically Cusumano-Modesti would refer to the following three works:
 - Pio X e Benedetto XV Nella Medaglia (1903-1922), published 1986
 - Pio XI Nella Medaglia (1922-1939), published 1987
 - Pio XII Nella Medaglia (1939-1958), published 1989

The John XXIII book (Giovanni XXII Nella Medaglia (1958-1963)) is only by Modesti (and published over two decades after the previous works!).

Interestingly, it seems that all of these books, plus the CNORP volumes, were limited to only 300 copies each.  It's a little scary to think that the number of serious collectors for papal medals is so small that these excellent volumes (especially CNORP) were limited to such low print runs.


Pabst,

I tried looking up the Pius IX pendant in Franco Bartolotti's "Medaglie e Decorazioni di Pio IX", but was unable to find it there.  I unfortunately do not have any good references for Leo XIII (I actually am not even aware of a good comprehensive reference covering his reign).


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on January 31, 2013, 09:35:50 pm
I thought I'd it'd be fun to try my hand at putting together some galleries highlighting some of the more interesting - to me at least - coins, medals or "subsets" of this thousand year old series.  As a starting point, I began with the interesting series of testoni of Innocent XI that I've posted over the last couple of weeks.  I've got a couple dozen coins in this series and hope to have them all up in the next week or so as time and trips to the bank permit.  I've generally collected with certain objectives in mind, so this is a way to see how close I've come on some of these. 

I'm admittedly spelling impaired and my knowledge base is sketchy at times, so any comments would be welcomed.  Thanks!  

Here's the link   http://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/index.php?cat=18418

What fun!
 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on February 03, 2013, 10:13:17 am
A very nice group of coins, stlnats!  The one still in its mount was very interesting to see.

I've actually always wondered something about this series of cartouche inscription, and perhaps you might have some insight.  From my understanding, these coins seem to be the first testoni issued with a reformed weight of 9.165 grams, reduced from the 9.596 grams they had been for over a century.  They were also issued for a long time (6 years) during a period of time when designs tended to change frequently.  Was this inscription, which would be so widely present on the new lower weight coins, supposed to help in spurring a quicker acceptance of the lower weight coins?  The phrase "Tis better to give than to receive" seems to me in this case to refer to people receiving less silver than they would be used to by accepting the new coins, and thus giving the difference in silver to the minting authority (aka, the Church).  I'm not sure if this makes any sense (or if what I wrote is even comprehensible), but it's something that's always been in the back of my mind.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on February 04, 2013, 07:43:14 am
I thought I'd it'd be fun to try my hand at putting together some galleries highlighting some of the more interesting - to me at least - coins, medals or "subsets" of this thousand year old series.  As a starting point, I began with the interesting series of testoni of Innocent XI that I've posted over the last couple of weeks.  I've got a couple dozen coins in this series and hope to have them all up in the next week or so as time and trips to the bank permit.  I've generally collected with certain objectives in mind, so this is a way to see how close I've come on some of these. 

I'm admittedly spelling impaired and my knowledge base is sketchy at times, so any comments would be welcomed.  Thanks!  

Here's the link   http://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/index.php?cat=18418

What fun!
 ;D

This is very interesting, thank you! Thanks for sharing some of your pieces with us. I'm a newcomer to the world of papal numismatics, so I learn with each one of the comments people make here. For the moment, I've restricted myself to medals (mostly the ones listed by Mazio) and, only recently, piastre (of which I've only got two, at the moment). I've been looking for the CNORP volumes that Joseph mentioned, but they are impossible to find. I wish they did a reprint or facsimile edition... So much research and knowledge out of our reach!

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on February 04, 2013, 09:29:56 am
Thanks for the positive feedback guys.  Several more to go and I'm still pretty slow at the imaging process so it takes longer than I'd expected.  And, I'm eager to post the jubilee medals to see what they look like as a unit as well. 

The CNORP volumes are tough to find at this point; I was extremely lucky to snag the volumes I did when they came out but my booksellers have been out of stock for some time.  I think I just found a couple of the missing volumes for my set so keep looking!

Interesting thought about the legends on these Joe.  I can see your point, but it would seem to me that was the intent, it would be really "in your face;" sort of we're the government and giving you new coins of lower weight is good for your soul so just accept it.  Of course my perspective colored by being a child of the 60s and having a deep distrust of authority. 

I think that the messaging needs to be seen in the context of that appearing on the other reformed denominations.  Guilios carry an inscription which I think might be understood as supporting public charity.  Frankly I've never quite understood the meaning of Nocet Minus on the grossi and halves.  I think having consistent designsand stable weights over several years - a real break from what had been done before - might have driven the acceptance of these more than the messaging itself, altho I really need to learn more about the reform before opining much more either way.  Interesting idea tho!

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on February 11, 2013, 07:33:41 am
You know you're a fanatically obsessive collector when...

After hearing of Benedict's decision to resign this morning, the first thing I thought was what the impact would be on the coins and medal issues this year.  And, if the conclave goes into July - and assuming they follow tradition - there might be 3 or more officials to collect (sede, sede annual and new pope election issue).  And I don't even want to think about if its a repeat of 1978!  Gotta start saving them nickels for all the contingencies!

In 2005, I'd just purchased, but had not yet received, the last medal needed for my "one of each pope" set when JP II died.  I'm starting to take this personal since it just never seems to end...

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on February 11, 2013, 08:52:58 am
Certainly shocking!

A Benedict XVI medal that used to be in my collection:
(http://papalmedals.org/forsale/benedictXVI_2008.jpg)


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on February 11, 2013, 09:40:13 am
In rummaging thru my boxes last week, I ran across this 26mm looped medal of Leo XIII commemorating Pius IX's promulgation of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception in 1854.  While I do need to finish off imaging the testoni, I thought this might be a nice fit with the recent conversation about the Miraculous Medal and other small looped items.  And yes, its yet more evidence on a couple of levels that I suffer from the "oh look a shiny thing" syndrome.

I'm not quite sure how this came to me, but assume the gilt ring around the bronze center was sufficiently interesting to justify its acquisition for a few dollars.  The medal is undated and I don't have a reference for it.  Perhaps issued for the 25th aniversary (1879) reinforcing the action of his predecessor, altho that's just a guess.  Being raised as a conservative Protestant, I don't quite understand the whole BVM dogma, but do find the imagery interesting since it was used again and again on coins and medals.

What fun!

 ;D

  



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on February 11, 2013, 12:57:16 pm
Papal resignation history from the Washington Post.  Only Gregory did coins, albeit very scarce, but it's possible to get "restitution" medals from them all.  Looks like I've got a new collecting theme!

Pope Benedict IX, in 1045: At age 33 and about 10 years into his tumultuous term, the Rome-born pope resigned so that he could get married – and to collect some cash from his godfather, also Roman, who paid Benedict IX to step down so that he might replace him, according to British historian Reginald L. Poole’s definitive and much-cited history of the 11th century.
 
Pope Gregory VI, in 1046: The same man who had bribed and replaced his godson ended up leaving the office himself only a year later, according to Poole’s account. The trouble began when Benedict IX failed to secure the bride he’d resigned for, leading him to change his mind and return to the Vatican. Both popes remained in the city, both claiming to rule the Catholic church, for several months. That fall, the increasingly despondent clergy called on the German Emperor Henry III, of the Holy Roman Empire, to invade Rome and remove them both. When Henry III arrived, he treated Gregory VI as the rightful pope but urged him to stand before a council of fellow church leaders. The bishops urged Gregory VI to resign for bribing his way into office. Though the fresh new pope argued that he had done nothing wrong in buying the papacy, he stepped down anyway.
 
Pope Celestine V, in 1294: After only five months in office, the somber Sicilian pope formally decreed that popes now had the right to resign, which he immediately used. according to a report in the Guardian. He wrote, referring to himself in the third person, that he had resigned out of “the desire for humility, for a purer life, for a stainless conscience, the deficiencies of his own physical strength, his ignorance, the perverseness of the people, his longing for the tranquility of his former life.” He became a hermit, but two years later was dragged out of solitude by his successor, who locked him up in an Italian castle. Celestine died 10 months later.

Pope Gregory XII, in 1415: The elderly Venetian had held the office for 10 years, but he was not the only pope. For decades, the Western Schism had left Europe with two popes, one in Rome and one in the French city of Avignon, according to Britannica. The schism’s causes were political rather than theological: the pope had tremendous power over European politics, which had led its kings to become gradually more aggressive in manipulating the church’s leaders. Gregory XII resigned so that a special council in Constance, which is today a German city, could excommunicate the Avignon-based pope and start fresh with a new, single leader of the Catholic church.


 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on February 14, 2013, 05:40:15 am
And there are a few others who resigned even before Benedict IX:

John XVIII abdicated and retired to a monastery in 1009 (this maybe a precedent for Benedict XVI's actions), apparently of his own free will, but may have been "helped along" on his decision by the powerful Roman families of that era.

Silverius abdicated while in exile in Nov. 537 to make way for the Empress Theodora's favorite, Vigilius.  Again, he may have been coerced to abdicate... at any rate, he died (apparently of starvation) a few weeks later.

Pontian, then in exile in Sardinia (along with Hippolytus, the first antipope), knowing that he would almost certainly not return from that notorious "Island of Death" abdicated in Sept. 235 to make room for a successor, so that the Christian community in Rome wouldn't be left leaderless.

Some, otherwise credible, online Catholic services are even suggesting that Clement I likewise resigned in c. 101, but there is no historical evidence to support this whatsoever.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on February 14, 2013, 07:27:08 am
I'm not sure why WaPo only focused on the latest 4, but it was an easy cut and paste and had some interesting info which seemed quite topical.  Appreciate the adds...Just a few more restoration medals to start looking for!

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on February 14, 2013, 08:45:31 am
One of the things that I find interesting with the Restoration Medals of the 16th - 18th Centuries, is that they are a snapshot of what the thinking was (vis-a-vis who was, and who was not, considered a legitimate pope) for their eras.  There are even medals for a couple of popes that did not exist at all.

Anacletus and Cletus (late First Century) are almost universally considered to be the same person nowadays (Cletus being a diminutive form of the name Anacletus), but that clearly wasn't the case at the time these medals were made, since there are individual medals for both names.  Oh, and there's also Anicetus from about a century later.  He wasn't the same person as Anacletus, but the names are similar.

And then there's Donus II, supposedly from 972, or perhaps 974.  Never existed at all.  Yet again, there are medals for that name as well.

Then there are some that were once listed as a legitimate pope but who are now considered to be an antipope.  Boniface VII (974, 984-985) is one example.  He was taken off the roster in 1904, and is now considered an antipope.  So are the two (anti)popes, Alexander V and (the first) John XXIII, of the Council of Pisa during the Great Western Schism.  They were, for a time, considered legitimate too.   And the Restoration medals exist for them all.

There are probably one or two others....



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on February 14, 2013, 10:27:35 am
is that they are a snapshot of what the thinking was

Great point.  History is writen by the victors/survivors after all. 

Said it before, but the nifty thing about this collecting niche is that over 6 centuries you'll see the same basic design elements reused and reinterpreted reflecting current thinking and aesthetics.  And you get curious designs unthinkable today but of which they were very proud at the time: the very common Huguenot medal of Gregory XIII being the most obvious example. 

What fun!

 ;D   


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on February 22, 2013, 06:42:56 am
Looks like Künker's next auction (which opens on March 18) has 21 high-end Papal coins from the AD 824-955 period.  In addition to the more reasonably-priced Renaissance and later pieces

The early stuff is way out of my own price-range (€2,500 and more) but maybe not for some of you...


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on February 23, 2013, 11:53:32 am
Thanks for the heads up.  

I'd love to add some early papal, but its outside of my primary focus and frankly I still have a bit of a resistance level at US$1k.  While I've certainly spent much more than that on individual pieces in the past, it becomes much less of a fun activity and much more of a financial one at that level;  I'm still primarily doing this series "for fun" and there's plenty for me to browse thru at more "popular prices."  However, looking thru their cat might just inspire me to buy a couple of powerball tickets, just in case.

edited to add:  amazing run of early papal.  thanks again for pointing it out.



 ;D      


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on February 24, 2013, 05:17:41 pm
Hi Pabst,

I just wanted to check, I assume you're referring to a selection of lots in Künker's auction 227 on March 11 (featuring the collection of Edoardo Curti)?  Thanks for pointing them out, as I had skipped looking through that catalogue.  Those coins are outside of my current focus (and price range!), but were very interesting to browse through!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on February 24, 2013, 05:30:20 pm
yes, that's the one.  March 11.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on February 24, 2013, 06:52:21 pm
Thanks.  Certainly some nice items.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on February 28, 2013, 06:38:04 am
Here's fun set of medals I picked up on eBay (for $23.50) that illustrate "both" Cletus and Anacletus...

The individual medals are 29.5mm and are between 14g and 14.2g each.  They appear to be gold-plated brass.

They are packaged in a red vinyl flip-envelope with the papal tiara and keys and the words LOMBARDO PAPAL COLLECTION inscribed in gold.   The inside of the envelope is double sided...  the right side has a card that says

LOMBARDO PAPAL COLLECTION
-.-
Sculptor - sculpteur - Scultore
Virginia Astorri
-.-
Engraver - Graveur - Incisore
Orazio Lombardo

and in small letters at the bottom right, "made by Canadian Artistic Dies, Inc."

The medals themselves are housed in a cardboard holder (velour-coated on the obverse)

I'm guessing this is from the late 1950s, though I'm not sure when vinyl came to be commonly used with this sort of packaging.  The medals themselves are in good enough shape, but are suffering from years of exposure to the clear vinyl covering them...the once mirror-like fields are "hazy" and there is some evidence of green spotting (indicating the presence of copper) in some of the medals now.

Anyone have any further information on these?

LATER:  A little more detective-work paid off:  http://www.lombardomint.com/english/about.htm
Doesn't reference these medals directly, but it at least gives a glimpse into the company and engraver that made them...



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on March 01, 2013, 04:04:38 pm
FYI, at today's Vatican press briefing, the issue of Sede Vacante stamps and coins was addressed.  The stamps are available now, while the coins will be available  in "a couple of months".  No specific mention of medals, which will perhaps be available when the coins are.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on March 02, 2013, 09:02:22 am
In 2005, they issued both a full set of the Euro coins (1 euro cent to 2 Euro) in both uncirculated and proof; and a 5-euro silver piece for the Sede Vacante.   

I remember at that time, the Ufficio Filatelico e Numismatico (or UFN) got into a bit of hot water with the EuroBank because they had already issued the maximum number of designs for the 'circulating' coinage for that year (having already issued a 2005 set for John Paul II).  The € 5 coin, being non-circulating, wasn't a concern, however.

So I wonder what, if any, effect this will have on this year's Sede Vacante coinage. 


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on March 03, 2013, 02:10:22 pm
My latest acquisition:

Bust right, bare-headed, with cope.
GREGORIVS XIII PONT OPT MAXIMVS
AB REGIBVS IAPONIOR PRIMA AS ROMA PONT LEGATIO ET OBEDIENTIA / 1585 in exergue
Legend in five lines below winged putto.
Signed: L·PARM
Artist: Lorenzo Fragni
R.Z. 131; Spink 754

The medal, apart from the rich tones of brown, is unremarkable, as the reverse is just legend. However, as usually happens with these medals, I learnt a bit of history thanks to its purchase. I found out about something I didn't know had happened: the first Japanese embassy to Rome in 1585. Led by Mancio Ito, the Japanese noblemen Miguel Chijiwa, Juliao Nakaura and Martinho Hara, who had converted to catholicism and would later become Jesuit priests, were received by the Pope Gregorius XIII. The voyage took 8 years. What an amazing trip it must have been!

Plus, it made me remember of James Clavell's 'Shogun', a novel I read (and thoroughly enjoyed!) over 20 years ago!

Regards,
Ignasi



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on March 03, 2013, 07:08:19 pm
Pretty medal Ignasi!  And I disagree, I think the medal is quite remarkable given its subject and some of the legend only types are quite a nice change from time to time.  

And one I don't have (rats!)

Congrats!

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on March 03, 2013, 07:26:14 pm
With a new pope in the offing, along with the associated coins, medals and whatnot, I've been rummaging thru my medals and have a question that perhaps someone can help me with.  Attached is a scan of a 2002 60mm gilt brass medal entitled "Omaggio a Leonardo" in the typical Vatican case and insert.  My records indicate examples from 2001 thru 2005, each portraying an example of a different artist's work.  The designs were also used in the 40 mm silver medals of subsequent years' proof sets (eg this was in the 2003 set).  The insert indicates there were only 5000 of these issued, so they are somewhat more scarce than the silvers of similar design.    

These are interesting designs, big, heavy and fun to handle and I think most of mine came off ebay fairly inexpensively some time ago so no issue there.  But the question I have is: was there a specific reason - beyond having something else to sell to collectors - for the issue of these big medals? I'm assuming they're considered an extraordinary issue.  I'm also curious if there was a reason the  designs were reused on the silver medals.  Finally I think they have a dual dates, such as 1929 - 2002 on this one.  I know 1929 was the establishment of VC, but is something else going on here? 

Thanks!
 ;D



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on March 04, 2013, 01:13:56 pm
It may have been more to justify the hefty expense of the proof sets by including these sterling silver medals.  I mean, why commemorate the 73rd anniversary of the Vatican City State?  It's not exactly a milestone...

In any case, now these medals have been replaced by a sterling silver € 20 commemorative coin, starting with the 2012 proof set.  Again, not sure why they decided to dump the medal for the smaller coin.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on March 04, 2013, 08:37:28 pm
Frankly I'm good with them dropping the medal in 2012 and hope they continue with coins vs medal for the new pope.  Frankly the only reason I bought the proofs at all was to get the silver medals which are fairly nice.   And I only cherry pick amongst the e 5 and 10 if the design is appealing.  But what I'm not sure about is why they issued the big gilt brass medals separately.  Ought to be some rationale...maybe?

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on March 06, 2013, 06:53:44 pm
Not sure of the level of interest here, but a member of the Collectors' Universe site posted a pic of likely designs for the upcoming Sede €2.  Here's the link:

http://www.numisbrazilis.blogspot.com.br/2013/03/sede-vacante-mmxiii.html

I also came across the news briefing that Joe cited last week:  looks like there'll be a €2 in the "circulating" medal, a €5 in silver, and a tiny €10 in gold.  I think that will be the first gold SV for Vatican City and the first "papal" Sede gold coin since 1846.  As I read it, the precious metal issues will follow the design of the silver coin in 2005. Its interestng that the announcement unabashedly admits that the latter two coins are NCLT issues and not legal tender outside of VC due to euro rules.  At any rate, here's the relevant sections of the news release:


Stamps And Coins Of The Sede Vacante
Vatican City, 1 March 2013 (VIS) -

...

Regarding coins, a €2.00 one commemorating the Sede Vacante will be issued. It is the only one that will be circulated seeing that, according to the European convention with the Vatican City State, only one coin is allowed to be issued per year, with an extra one permitted in the case of a Sede Vacante. There will, therefore, be two coins in 2013: one for the Sede Vacante and the other, to be issued in April, with an image of Benedict XVI.

The Sede Vacante coin, 125,000 of which will be minted, bears the emblem of the Cardinal camerlengo with the pavilion of the Apostolic Camera.

There will also be 10,000 silver €5.00 coins minted for the Sede Vacante that will have a dove of the Holy Spirit and the words "Veni Sancte Spiritus" on one side and the emblem of the Cardinal camerlengo with the pavilion of the Apostolic Camera and the phrase "Sede Vacante 2013" on the other. Likewise, 5,000 gold €10.00 coins will be minted. This will be a very small coin (13.85mm in size and 3g in weight) and will have the same images and writing as the silver coin.

The €5.00 and €10.00 coins are collectibles and, theoretically, can only be used within the Vatican. They are not legal tender outside of the Vatican.

What fun!
 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on April 06, 2013, 11:46:59 am
Well, after the better part of two months, I finally found and entered the last "Melius Est Dare Quam Accipere" testone into my gallery (Muntoni 72).  Its always like a scavenger hunt when something gets misplaced at the bank; guess I need to start pruning the deadwood (ie collections that were started but never went, nor are likely to go, very far).  Actively looking for more varieties of course but I think these 25 represent a reasonable cross section of the wide range of varieties used for the same basic coin type.  Just gotta love them baroques! 

Pulled a few other favorite baroque/late 17th century pieces that'll go up in a new subgallery as soon as I get decent images to share.

Comments, etc are welcome.  Thanks for looking!

      ;D
 


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on April 06, 2013, 01:37:04 pm
I must admit I never realized such a series existed, and you got me interested in it! Your gallery is superb, I'm envious! I'll be interested to know if you find still new varieties. If I ever see one, I'll let you know. I'm currently centered in piastre and my ongoing interest in bronze medals, so this series will have to wait a few years...

Regards,
Ignasi

 


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on April 06, 2013, 01:58:47 pm
Thanks Ignasi for the kind words.  I've been doing these for a while and picked up 2 unusual varieties in an auction early this year and maybe a couple last year.  I tend to be a "to the center of the earth" type of collector, looking for varieties in a fairly narrow scope and this series lets me get it "out of my system."  I like the piastres and medals as well, but tend to pick off interesting or historical types than focus on all the varieties.  And frankly there's been so much new reference material over the last several years I'm still often playing catch up to figure out exactly what I have! 


 ;D



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on April 06, 2013, 03:48:00 pm
Excellent series of Testoni!  Great photos!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on April 07, 2013, 03:06:11 am
I'm currently centered in piastre and my ongoing interest in bronze medals...

 


I thought I'd just as well show my two latest medals. I usually don't buy post-18th century, but I recently put a bid on three architectural types of Pius IX, done by Bianchi, and finally got these two. I just love the depth the artist achieves in a shallow piece of bronze! It's almost inviting you to wander in!

The first one (PAP-070) shows the interior of the Sixtine chapel at Santa Maria Maggiore; the second (PAP-071) that of the Basilica of San Lorenzo in Rome.

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on April 07, 2013, 08:43:29 am
Nice annuals Ignasi.  I assume these are the 44 mm size.  There are also several of the architectural types in a much larger size, 82 mm.  I have two of them, a silver (in the bank) and a rough but still very impressive AE of S. Pauls outside the walls.  As you see the AE is kinda rough, it was literally pulled from a dealer's junk box years ago for all of USD 9.  Despite its tough life before I got it, the AE is very impressive in hand.  The obverses of these "heavies" are remarkably dull and empty looking but the die cutter/designer deftly used the medal's 6 mm thickness to provide incredible depth of field on the reverse.  As you say, they invite you to come inside.  

The medal is rather dark (much more brown than red) so I tinkered, not especially well admittedly, with the color of the image to give a better sense of the reverse.   

 ;D        


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on April 08, 2013, 04:26:27 am
Superb for 9 USD!!! It's a wonderful medal, that I hadn't seen so far. I find that Pius IX has some interesting types.

Yes, mine are the smaller sized ones.

Regards,
Ignasi




Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on April 08, 2013, 02:45:46 pm
Nice medals!  Every time I see images of these architectural types, it tempts me to want to collect these "later" (19th century) medals.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on May 29, 2013, 07:36:08 am
Added another testone to my gallery today.  Came from a recent auction; was outbid on a beautiful M 82 (obverse with a 3/4 view of the arms)  in exceptional condition that I really wanted but this is an OK consolation prize, I guess.  

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on May 29, 2013, 07:44:56 am
beautiful piece!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on May 29, 2013, 07:47:38 am
TY Papst!

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on May 31, 2013, 10:28:39 am
Nice addition!  Too bad you missed out on the other one, it looked like it had some nice color to it on the obverse.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on June 09, 2013, 03:57:19 am
Sorry I've been absent for a while... Very nice testone, stlnats! I do look for this series now when browsing through papal coins at auctions.

I have recently acquired a few nice items relevant to this thread. The first is a sede vacante piastra that I bought at auction for what I thought was a decent price. It's not in perfect condition, but I like it nonetheless.

Berman 2330
Canopy and crossed keys over shield.
SEDE VACANTE MDCC
NON VOS RELINQVAM ORPHANOS / ANNO IVBIL in exergue
Radiant dove above clouds.
Rome, year 1700.

The second that I want to show is a bronze medal with a curious feature on the rim: the dotted line seems to have come loose! And it indeed has; if I tried to push it back, it would break. Anyway, the medal is a nice restrike of a Sixtus V medal depicting a very nice rendering of St. Peter's, by the artist Nicolò de Bonis.

Regards,
Ignasi



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on June 09, 2013, 10:57:40 pm
Interesting items Ignasi.  I like the coins of 1700 in that you get a twofer: both a SV and a jubilee year commem.  Your's is a real honey.

I'm not quite sure what to make of the medal except that its an exciting find.   It's late and I could only do a quick scan of CNORP and didn't see anything like it.  Maybe a partial double strike; the original beads are a bit squashed but the letters look crisp and there's nothing I can see on the reverse.  Whatever it is, I like it!  

Congrats on both.

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on June 10, 2013, 03:42:24 am
Thanks for your comments. It is not a double strike, as far as I can see. I think there's nothing more (or less!) to it than the fact that the dotted line has indeed detached itself (maybe because of a blow) at that point but has miraculously remained attached to the rest of the dots.

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on June 10, 2013, 07:07:23 am
A couple of nice items, Ignasi!  That medal certainly is interesting with the loose beaded border; I've never heard of anything like it.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on June 10, 2013, 07:26:58 am
duplicate removed


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on June 10, 2013, 08:13:50 am
Wow, I didn't realize you were being literal!  In my defense it was late when I saw your post and I'd had a couple of adult beverages over dinner with a lovely friend.  At any rate, very odd indeed, but still quite interesting.  What fun!

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 27, 2013, 06:58:13 am
1849-R  ½ Baiocco

The 1849-R AN•IIII is probably the most common coin in the whole Papal States series (I guess maybe the 1865-R AN•XX 20 Baiocchi is a close second).  On almost any day you can look on eBay and find several for sale.  

What is far less common--you can go for a year or more and not see one--is AN•IIII's scarce sister, the ANNO IV.  I saw this one last week and snatched it up.

Both the examples shown here are not in particularly good shape (the ANNO IV has a slight bend in the 6 o'clock position on the obverse), but some interesting stuff can be seen.  

Besides the overall wear, both coins exhibit very strong die wear.  In particular, there are lots of small die chips (raised areas on the coin) for the ANNO IV in the region around the regnal date), and in the case of the AN IIII, the reverse die in particular had a lot of cracks and clash marks, and was probably very near to failure when this piece was struck.

If you look carefully, on the AN IIII, there is a small dot that appears within the Roman numeral, making it almost look like AN •II•II.  From the pictures I've seen on eBay and elsewhere, this feature seems pretty common.

The ANNO IV, amid all the die deterioration, appears to have traces of an additional Roman numeral I to the right of the IV, so this may be a re-engraved AN•II or AN•III die.  Or it may be that the die wear makes it appear that way...


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on June 27, 2013, 08:19:43 am
Interesting! 

While the 19th century is outside of my primary interest, your discussion makes me want to go and look at my coins of the period more closely.  Of course  Naples/Two Sicilies has a ton of such varieties - and which are quite fun to find - I haven't paid attention to of such varieties for Rome.  Thanks for sharing Pabst!

 ;D

 


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on June 27, 2013, 04:36:50 pm
I agree, very interesting comments. Always nice to learn new things about Papal coinage!

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on October 10, 2013, 06:45:07 pm
Been kinda quiet around here over the summer.  I'd frankly lost track of the new pope's medal issues and just came across this article on the 'net.  Guess there's not spell a check program for die engravers!  Nice looking reverse, but this may now become my kids' Christmas present for me if they're going to restrike them (not a bad thing that).

Vatican Misspells Jesus’ Name on Papal Medal

Someone is going to be saying a “mea culpa.”
 
A medal issued by the Vatican commemorating Pope Francis’ first year as the Bishop of Rome included a rather glaring spelling error, a typo of Biblical proportions.
 
Engraved with the Latin phrase that the pope says inspired him to join the priesthood as a young man, Italy’s state mint misspelled the name of Jesus, calling the son of God Lesus instead.
 
The medals, of which 6,000 were pressed in silver and bronze and another 200 in gold, have now been recalled. The design included a portrait of Pope Francis on the obverse and on the reverse a work by the artist Mariangela Crisciotti.
 
The medals were to go on sale Tuesday and include the Latin inscription: “Vidit ergo Jesus publicanum et quia miserando atque eligendo vidit, ait illi sequere me,” according to the Vatican press office.
 
Mistakenly, however, the word “Lesus” was printed instead.
 
The phrase it the pope’s motto. It means, “Jesus, therefore, saw the publican, and because he saw by having mercy and by choosing, He said to him, ‘Follow me.’”


 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on October 10, 2013, 07:31:49 pm
Not to be pedantic, but it should be IESVS, since there is no J in Latin.  :laugh:



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on October 10, 2013, 08:21:34 pm
Not to be pedantic, but it should be IESVS, since there is no J in Latin.  :laugh:



Quite right and not pedantic at all.  One explanation I saw is that someone confused the correct "I" for a lower case L rather than a J.  As you point out wrong either way but wouldn't it be a hoot if they restruck the medals with a "J?"  

;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on October 14, 2013, 01:15:52 pm
I would be...if the correction of the error was just as wrong as the original!   8)

The media here in the United States has reported this story widely--all saying the 'correct' spelling would be with a J. 

I just laugh.   ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on December 02, 2013, 10:49:20 am
I've just added a couple of new testones to my gallery.  Both pics are from the seller.  

Neither of these coins are likely to win any OTD accolades, but I consider them to be perfectly good and very inexpensive "space fillers" for my set.  I particularly like the M82 (1684) with the 3/4 profile of the papal arms.   This sort of obverse was also used for a mezzo of Innocent and it still presents nicely (at least I think so) even on this lower grade coin.  The M116 (1689) has a reverse arrangement with elements interweaving in an interesting way as well.    

Perhaps saying so risks being considered certifiable, but I still find it a delight to add what might be considered to be such wretched coins to my collection.  What fun!

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: silvernut on December 03, 2013, 03:25:05 am
I think they are both very nice coins. Congratulations!

Regards,
Ignasi


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on December 03, 2013, 06:46:55 am
Thanks Ignasi! 

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on January 05, 2014, 08:30:53 pm
A few medals to share ...




Gregory XIII - New Roman College

by Bernardino Passero, 1582

(http://www.renaissancemedals.com/pics/1032.jpg)
Cast, Bronze, 59 mm Ø

Obverse: Bust of Gregory XIII facing right, with hand raised in benediction, wearing camauro and mozzetta. Around,  GENERALI · COLLEG · SOCIETATIS · IESV · ROME · EXTRVCTO · ET · DOTATO . Smaller, and within the outer text,  · GREGORIVS · X · III · AN · PON · X .

Reverse: Gregory XIII kneeling in prayer facing left with head uplifted towards a figure of Jesus in clouds, who is gesturing to the building of the Roman College below, in front of which is a flock of sheep. On the ground in front of Gregory is the papal tiara; a pastoral staff lies in the foreground; behind him is a tree. Around,  GREGORIO · PASTORI · OPTIMO · PATERNA · CARITATE · OVES · PASCENTI · . In smaller text, around the figure of Jesus,  PASCE · OVES · MEAS .

Foundation medal for the new building for the Jesuit College in Rome.

The Jesuit College in Rome was originally established by Saint Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits, on February 18, 1551. The school was raised to the rank of university when Pope Paul IV authorized it in 1556 to confer degrees in theology and philosophy. Over the years, it grew in enrollment and reached over a thousand students. Gregory XIII sought to give the college a better suitable, leading to the construction of a new edifice, as illustrated on the reverse of the medal. Great sums of money were spent on the project, which was largely supported financially by the pope himself. The Florentine architect Bartolomeo Ammannati was placed in charge of the project, and the work was overseen by the Jesuit Giuseppe Valeriano. The first stone was laid on January 11, 1582 at a ceremony which was celebrated by Cardinal Gustavillani. Work proceeded quickly, and the college was operating in the building by 1584. Final completion however would not occur until after the death of Gregory. Due to his patronage, the college would become known as the Gregorian University.

References: CNORP 781, Toderi-Vannel 2355




Urban VIII - New Fortifications for the Port of Civitavecchia

by Alessandro Astesano, 1631

(http://www.renaissancemedals.com/pics/1019.jpg)
Struck, Bronze, 42 mm Ø

Obverse: Bust of Urban VIII facing right wearing decorative cope. Around,  VRBANVS · VIII · PONT · MAX · A · VIIII . On the truncation,  A · ASTESSANO · F · .

Reverse: Bird's eye view of the port and city of Civitavecchia. Above and around,  NVNC RE PERFECTO , bordered by two bees.

Annual medal for the ninth year of Urban VIII's reign, issued on June 29, 1632. The original emission consisted of 230 examples in gold, 450 in silver, and 100 in bronze.

Civitavecchia was the major port for Rome, being important not only as a major commercial port but also as the home of the pontifical navy on the west coast of Italy. Like his predecessors, Urban VIII ensured that the port was always kept in continuous repair, and he also ordered stronger fortifications to be built to protect this important location. Nathan Whitman notes that, "By featuring on a medal the defensive and commercial aspects of this major port Urban was making as assertion of strength that was simultaneously military and economic."

Provenance: From the collection of Michael Hall.

Exhibited in Roma Resurgens: Papal Medals from the Age of the Baroque by Nathan T. Whitman and John L. Varriano. [n. 60, p. 79]

References: Miselli 245, Modesti "Annuale" 99, Roma Resurgens 60




Alexander VII - New Arsenal at Civitavecchia

by Gioacchino Francesco Travani, 1659

(http://www.renaissancemedals.com/pics/1034.jpg)
Cast, Silvered Bronze, 69.0 mm Ø

Obverse: Bust of Alexander VII facing left, wearing camauro, cassock, and undecorated stole. Around,  ALEXANDER · VII · P · M · PIVS · IVST · OPT · SENEN · PATR · GENTE · CHISIVS · MDCLIX · . On truncation,  FT · F .

Reverse: Bird's eye view of the fortified port of Civitavecchia. Above, on scroll,  NAVALE CENTVMCELL .

From 1659-1660, Alexander VII undertook a project of constructing a new ship-building arsenal at Civitavecchia, led by the famed artist and architect Gian Lorenzo Bernini. This medal shows the initial layout for the proposed six bays of the arsenal, present as a row of six parallel openings at the rear of the harbor, directly to the left of the fort which is present on the right. For the final design, the bays were split into pairs which were set at an angle of 30° to one another. A smaller, struck medal was later made in 1660 with this final design. On the reverse, the inscription NAVALE CENTVMCELL (Port of Centumcellae) refers to the original name for the harbor, which had been constructed by the emperor Trajan.

References: Miselli 566, Roma Resurgens 91




Alexander VII - Construction of the Church of the Assumption

by Gioacchino Francesco Travani, 1662

(http://www.renaissancemedals.com/pics/1012.jpg)
Cast, Bronze, 66 mm Ø

Obverse: Bust of Alexander VII facing left, wearing tiara and decorative cope featuring a scene of the Annunciation. Around,  ALEX · VII · PONT · OPT · MAX · . Beneath the bust,  · A · VII · .

Reverse: Frontal view of the Church of the Assumption. Above and around,  BENE · FVNDATA · DOMVS · DOMINI · B · VIRGINI · . Below and around,  ARICINORVM PATRONAE .

Foundation medal for the Church of the Assumption in Ariccia. Though unsigned, the piece has been traditionally attributed to Travani on the grounds of style due to similarity to several other cast pieces of Alexander VII from this time.

This particular design is unlisted and unknown in any of the major collections, and is possibly unique. Medals are well-known which are based on the same general design, though the details between this medal and those differ significantly. On the other medals, the regnal year of the pope is included in the large inscription around the edge on the obverse, and the area underneath the bust contains the date  1662  in Arabic numerals. Also, the scene on the cope shows Jesus carrying the cross, rather than the Annunciation. Turning to the reverse, the positioning of the inscriptions is slightly different. Above and around is  BENE · FVNDATA · DOMVS · DOMINI , while below and around is  B · VIRGINI · ARICINORVM · PATRONAE . This lower inscription is also on a scroll in the other version.

In late 1661, Gian Lorenzo Bernini began work on the design for a new church across from the ducal palace in Ariccia (which he would also renovate). The final design for the church is given on this foundation medal, though the two flanking loggias are not shown. Construction began in 1662, and was completed in time for Alexander to hold mass there on May 16, 1664, consecrating the new church.

Provenance: From the collection of Francesco Calveri.

References: c.f. Miselli 592, c.f. Roma Resurgens 98
 


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on January 06, 2014, 09:06:43 am
Excellent medals!  Nice to read some of the back story as to why the medals were issued!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on January 07, 2014, 07:00:12 am
Excellent medals!  Nice to read some of the back story as to why the medals were issued!

+1, wonderful medals Joe.  Esp like the two big ones of Alex 7th!

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on January 08, 2014, 07:11:01 pm
Thanks guys!  I though you might also like to see these two medals.  Though not papal, they are of cardinals and thus are kind of related.



Cardinal Ippolito d'Este

by Gianfederico Bonzagni, c. 1547/1572

(http://www.renaissancemedals.com/pics/1029.jpg)
Bronze, 46.0 mm Ø, 32 g

Obverse: Bust of Ippolito d'Este facing left with beard and wearing hooded cassock. Around, HIPPOLYTVS · ESTEN · S · R · E · PRESB · CARD · FERRAR · (Ippolito d'Este, Priest of the Holy Roman Church, Cardinal of Ferrara). Under the bust, · FED · PARM · (Federico the Parmense).

Reverse: Abraham kneeling before three draped men. Behind Abraham are a building a tree. Above and around, · NE TRANSEAS · SERVVM · TVVM · (Pass Not Away From Thy Servant).

Ippolito d'Este (1509-1572) was the second son of Alfonso I d'Este, duke of Ferrara, and Lucrezia Borgia. He was created cardinal by Pope Paul III in 1538 by and was appointed papal legate in France in 1561. A cultivated and wealthy man, Ippolito was a patron of the arts and of medallists, with six different medals of him known. Vannel & Toderi posit that this medal was probably executed in the later years of Ippolito's life.

The reverse scene and legend are taken from Genesis 18:2-4 (And when he had lifted up his eyes, there appeared to him three men standing near him: and as soon as he saw them he ran to meet them from the door of his tent, and adored down to the ground. And he said: Lord, if I have found favour in thy sight, pass not away from thy servant: But I will fetch a little water, and wash ye your feet, and rest ye under the tree.).

References: Attwood 962, Börner 492, Johnson 44, Milan 907, NGA 429, Vannel-Toderi 2189




Cardinal Prospero Publicola Santacroce

by Federico Cocciola, 1579

(http://www.renaissancemedals.com/pics/1037.jpg)
Bronze, 55 mm Ø, 77 g

Obverse: Bust of Prospero Santacroce facing right, tonsured and bearded, wearing a hooded cassock. Around, · PROSPER · SANCTACRVCIVS · S · R · E · CARD · (Prospero Santacroce, Cardinal of the Holy Roman Church). On truncation, FED COC (Federico Cocciola).

Reverse: View of the planned Villa Gerocomio, its garden, entry gate, and the surrounding hills. Around, in spaced out letters, GEROCOMIO . Below, 1579 .

Prospero Publicola Santacroce (1514-1589) was born in Rome and was created cardinal by Pope Pius IV in 1565. He was Camerlengo of the Sacred College of Cardinals from January 9, 1581 to January 8, 1582.

In 1579, he purchased a strip of land four miles east of Tivoli on which he planned to build his retirement villa. Built on the remains of an ancient Roman villa, its name, Villa Gerocomio, comes from a Greek word meaning retreat for the aged. The reverse of the medal shows how Santacroce envisioned the villa, with a garden, fish pond, grove, aviary, and other accompaniments. However, it seems that the plan was never realized as there are no traces of the structures on the grounds.

References: Attwood 972, Börner 486, Johnson 49, Milan 1903-5, NGA 434, Toderi-Vannel 2345


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on January 12, 2014, 04:59:09 pm
A couple of pickups from the recent NYINC show:




Pope Clement IX

by Alberto Hamerani, 1667/8

(http://www.renaissancemedals.com/pics/1039.jpg)
Bronze, 34.5 mm Ø, 15.9 g

Obverse: Bust of Clement IX facing left, wearing camauro, mozzetta, and decorative stole. Around, CLEMENS · IX · PONT · MAX · ANNO · I · . On the truncation, · ALBERT · AMERANO · F · .

Reverse: A pelican, with wings outstretched, pierces her breast with her beak, from which blood flows to nourish its young. All standing within a nest on the ground. Above and around, · ALIIS · NON · SIBI · CLEMENS · (Mercy For Others, Not For Himself). Below, on a stone, AH .

With a warm brown patina and thin planchet with fine filing on the edge, this is likely an early strike.

The reverse inscription is the personal motto which Clement IX chose for his papacy. The reverse scene of a pelican in her piety, a classical allegory for Jesus Christ, reinforces the notion of the mercy that the new pope has for the people.

Reference: Miselli 682




Pope Innocent XI

by Giovanni Hamerani, 1680

(http://www.renaissancemedals.com/pics/1040.jpg)
Gilt Bronze, 35.2 mm Ø, 22.5 g

Obverse: Bust of Innocent XI facing right, wearing camauro, mozzetta, and decorative stole. Around, INNOCEN · XI · PONT · M · A · IIII . Under the bust, · HAMERANVS · F · .

Reverse: Allegorical representation of the Catholic Faith standing, facing left, holding a chalice with radiant host in her right hand and supporting a cross with her left. In the background, the Tiber River, with the Ponte Sant'Angelo on the right and St. Peter's Basilica in the background on the left. Above and around, IN · SÆCVLVM / STABIT (Forever It Shall Stand). On a stone to the left of the figure's feet, 1680 .

Struck on a thicker flan, this is probably a later strike.

Annual medal issued on June 29, 1680, with the original issue consisting of 129 in gold and 265 in silver.

Louis XIV of France was constantly trying to separate the Church of France from the Church of Rome or to even bring the Holy See under his control. The reverse inscription of this medal reinforces the concept that the Roman Church both had its own temporal autonomy and was the spiritual authority for all catholicism, for all time. Innocent XI warned Louis XIV many times to halt his ambitions against the Church, including under threat of excommunication.

References: Miselli 121, Modesti "Annuale" 157


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Michael C on February 24, 2014, 08:46:16 am
I recently bought a small collection of 5 medieval Papal State coins. My numismatic interests mainly concerns Danish medieval coins and Roman, but out of curiosity I bought these as they were fairly cheap and potentially interesting (I had just finished watching The Borgias on TV). So knowing next to nothing about coins from the Papal States I am hoping some of the knowledgeable members here could educate me.

I am listing the descriptions for each coin as provided by the auction site, if any of these are wrong I would be grateful for a correction. I am especially interested in their specific denominations (gros, carlino, sesino, denier, etc.) as I suspect the information from the auction site might not be correct. Secondly I would like to hear about their quality, are they terrible or as-expected for these types. Finally I am of course interested in knowing about their rarity and perhaps their individual estimated values. I doubt I am so lucky, but on mcsearch.info I saw an example of the Sede Vacante 1378 coin sold for 4000 euro in 2010, which is far more than what I paid! I assume that must have been a particularly rare subtype or something right?



[BROKEN PHOTO BUCKET IMAGE LINK REMOVED BY ADMIN]
1) Sede Vacante 1378, 1 denier n/d, Avignon, Berman 217
Obv: X SEDE VACANTE
Rev: SANCTVS PETRVS


[BROKEN PHOTO BUCKET IMAGE LINK REMOVED BY ADMIN]
2) Nicholas V, 2 denier n/d, Avignon 1447 - 1455, Berman 345
Obv: NICOLAS PP QVINTVS
Rev: SANCTVS PETRVS



[BROKEN PHOTO BUCKET IMAGE LINK REMOVED BY ADMIN]
3) Alexander VI, 1 carlin n/d, Avignon 1492 - 1503, Berman 548
Obv: ALEXAN-DER PP VI
Rev: SAN-TVS PET-RVS



[BROKEN PHOTO BUCKET IMAGE LINK REMOVED BY ADMIN]
4) Pius IV, 1 carlin n/d, Avignon 1559 - 1565, Berman 1086
Obv: PIVS PP QVARTVS
Rev: CARO-C.DE.B-ORBO-N.L.AV


[BROKEN PHOTO BUCKET IMAGE LINK REMOVED BY ADMIN]
5) Pius V, 1 carlin n/d, Avignon 1566 - 1572, Berman 1132
Obv: PIVS PP QVINTVS
Rev: CARO-C.DE.B-ORBO-N.L.AV



Please note that I have yet to pick-up these coins, so I can’t give any information about size and weight at this point, and therefore these are also the seller’s pictures.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on February 24, 2014, 10:51:46 am
Welcome Michael,

Not exactly in "my" primary area of interest, but as best as I can tell from a quick scan the coins are accurately described by Berman # including mints and denominations.  In terms of quality, I'd consider them as "fine" or thereabouts but that's just based on the scans.   Earlier papal can be wretched in appearance and these are certainly much better than that.  We don't discuss value here (see the rules) but if you have the Berman book you can get a sense of relative value.  Overall, a pretty nice group which I'd have been happy to buy (if "fairly cheap") and would certainly consider them better than "hole fillers."  Just my opinion.  

 ;D




Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Michael C on February 24, 2014, 02:11:38 pm
Hi stlnats,
Thank you for the friendly welcome and for your opinion, it's much appreciated  :)
Also I am sorry to have brought up the value aspect, please ignore that part of my initial post (admins feel free to delete that part).

Unfortunately I do not have access to the Berman's book, if anyone here have the book I would be happy to hear if Berman lists any interesting information besides what is listed already. I already noticed that the Pius IV coin must have been minted in 1565, as Charles de Bourbon (referenced on the reverse of the coin) only became papal legate in this year, the last year of Pius IV.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Michael C on March 15, 2014, 04:45:22 am
I am not sure how many members on this board takes an interest in medieval papal coins, however, I would very much like to learn more about them if anyone is interested in discussing them.

One of the coins I posted above was a Sede Vacante from 1378, which I can understand was minted during one of the shortest conclaves. It took just 13 days from pope Gregory XI died to pope Urban VI sat on the chair of saint Peter. Obviously, the coin dies must have been produced in advance of Gregory's death, but still, isn't 13 days a very short time to start up a whole new coin production? How many coins of this type would likely have been minted in this short time spand?

My main numismatic interest lies in danish medieval coins and I know that Denmark had a very efficient "renovatio monetae" system, where last year's coin type would be deemed invalid and hence collected and re-smelted into the current type. Does anyone know how the papal coin system worked? Did each type have a limited circulation period or were they valid coin throughout different papal periods?

Also if you have any interesting information about the papal coin system or on some specific coins, please share, I would love to hear. Everything is of interest as this area is completely new to me.

Thanks!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Kim B. N on March 15, 2014, 06:00:57 am
Welcome/velkommen Michael i think you will enjoy this fantastic Forum Joe and many others has build up.  +++ Good to se another fellow country man in here.  :)

Cheers Kim


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Michael C on March 18, 2014, 02:07:57 am
Hi Kim, thank you for your nice welcome, much appreciated  :)
I bought my first coins from Joe sometime around 2000-2002, but it is only now I found this forum. Although there apparently isn't much interest in medieval papal coins, luckily I see many other interesting topics around, hopefully I can contribute something in those sections instead.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on June 17, 2014, 10:16:48 am
Been a bit quiet around here of late, so I thought I'd post my latest "Melius" testone, a Muntoni 90 which I just added to my gallery.  Seller's pix that I cobbled together.  I purchased this accidentally - d'oh - but it looks nice and has an interesting angled arms on the obverse - a design technique that really livens up the obverse and that I especially enjoy.  I've certainly made much worse purchases so no worries on this one. 

Also, we're within a few days of the feasts of SS Peter and Paul and I wondered if anyone had heard/has an illustration of the 2014 Vatican annual medal.

What fun!  ;D

   


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on June 17, 2014, 09:28:10 pm
Nice testone!  I like the curved arms on the front and how it matches the curved cartouche on the reverse.  The palm fronds on the obverse and branches on the reverse are another nice touch!


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on June 18, 2014, 06:07:50 am
Thanks Joe. As most of this series, well designed and lots going on in a relatively small area.  Makes 'em fun to collect and not a big issue if you pick up a dup or two.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on June 18, 2014, 03:36:06 pm
Nice piece!  You have to love the Baroque artistic sensibilities of these pieces!

Here's my only example.  It's badly scratched (from a botched cleaning attempt, maybe?) but still an interesting piece.

Muntoni 79
Berman 2103
KM 433


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on June 20, 2014, 06:35:55 am
Nice piece!  You have to love the Baroque artistic sensibilities of these pieces!

Here's my only example.  It's badly scratched (from a botched cleaning attempt, maybe?) but still an interesting piece.

Thanks Pabst.  I really like the baroque issues.  Many, such as your testone, are still interesting and well worth purchasing regardless of condition and make a refreshing change from the focus on TPG "top pops" of otherwise uninspired issues infecting a lot of numismatics.   

What fun!

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on August 08, 2014, 05:30:39 am
Lanz put up a Benedict XII (1334-1342) picciolo on eBay and I won the auction...not a bad coin, and for a reasonable price!



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on August 08, 2014, 09:41:17 am
Congrats!  Looks like its all there too. 

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on August 08, 2014, 01:30:13 pm
Thanks!  I didn't have a coin of Benedict XII yet, so it's a big milestone for me.  For those who want to know catalog references, they are:

Berman 179
Ryan 196:1
Muntoni 2
Cinagli 4





Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on February 05, 2015, 07:44:20 am
I don't know if this qualifies as an "Unlisted New Variety!", but unlisted in Berman, KM, Eklund, Cinagli and Muntoni at least is this variation of the 1802 ½ Baiocco of Pius VII.

All the above sources list only one variety of the 1802 ½ Baiocco, that with the reverse legend spelled PONTIFICATVS.  Here is a variety that spells it PONTIFICATV (without the final S).  Also there are other variations, among them the placement of the cords at the bottom of the shield, and the spacing in the denomination M  :dot: BAI

Also, the weights are significantly different, even though both coins grade about the same.  The PONTIFICATV is 5.99g, over a gram heavier than PONTIFICATVS, which is 4.93g.



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on March 15, 2015, 03:54:29 pm
 :Tao-Rho:


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on April 05, 2015, 10:37:16 am
Happy Easter all.

I recently purchased a pleasant private medal produced for the 1900 Jubilee year.  No great shakes and not something that I usually dabble in, but I was taken by the date on the obverse which was given as "MDCD" rather than the MCM I would have expected.   I realize it technically gets to the same place (1000 + 500 + 400 (CD) = 1900) and I've seen a few other anomalous dates (eg IIII vs IV), but don't recall ever seeing this rendering.  Has anyone seen this before or can comment on why this might have been used?  Images are those of the seller.  Thanks.  


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Sam on April 05, 2015, 10:51:53 am
A Happy Easter you too and all.

Sam


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on April 05, 2015, 12:28:08 pm
Happy Easter to all!

re: the Leo XIII medal...I believe that's the first time I've ever seen that particular ordering the Roman numerals for '1900'. 


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on April 05, 2015, 09:39:34 pm
Thanks Pabst, glad that I'd not missed anything obvious.  

I did a perusal of Modesti's Leo XIII book and saw that this and a related silver medal (center only, no ring) are the only dates using the MDCD formula for any of the medals issued in 1900 and the Jubilee related medals of 1899.  While I did not count them, it appears that MDCCCC is the most commonly used date followed rather closely by MCM.  A handful use 1900.  This is a private issue and is not attributed/attributable per Modesti and it may just be the result of whim of the anonymous designer.  One suggestion is that the MDCD is nicely symmetrical with the ROMA on the other side of the design altho on examination it isn't quite balanced and seems a bit unnatural way for the date.  But the medal was inexpensive, fits into my Jubilee/Holy Year collection and with a curious rendering of the date ... what fun!

 ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on April 06, 2015, 05:06:42 am
Check out this site on papal medals (official and unofficial).  I can see at least one other medal that shows a similar date-configuration.

http://numismatica-italiana.lamoneta.it/moneta/W-AE1123/20

You might also be able to find your medal somewhere among the listings.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on April 06, 2015, 09:24:51 pm
Thanks again Pabst.  That looks like a very useful site that I must peruse soon. 

The medallet (or whatever the correct term is) on the web site is in fact pictured on the same page as another I came across:  Mod 337 is a smaller, silver version of "my" medal (a Modesti 326) but without the outer ring and has the date rendered as MDCD.  It's undoubtedly by the same maker.  Interestingly,  Modesti 336 appears to be of the same overall design, probably of the same maker but uses the date 1900. I'd overlooked the medal you mentioned in haste. I'm not sure I totally understand the arrangement, but these smaller souvenir were basically grouped together with a number assigned but no individual discussion. A dozen or so of the smaller pieces were pictured on the page and only two of them (the silver one and the one you mention) have the odd date arrangement.  I will look into the site you mentioned to see if there are others.  I frankly hadn't looked carefully at the group listings of the smaller pieces.  I haven't spent much time with the Modesti Leo book since its not been of immediate interest so I need to correct that. 

By contrast. most larger pieces including the one I pictured (which is just under 39mm) have more complete listings, often a page or so each, altho I'm frankly not sure that the nature of mine is really much different than those in the group listing.  I did go thru the larger pieces more carefully and the results were as I mentioned before. 

At any rate, this is what makes collecting so much fun for me.  These older unofficials are a real bear to tie down, so the hunt goes on!  What fun...

 ;D



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: quadrans on May 04, 2015, 09:21:12 am
Thi is mine LEO XIII medal,

http://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-109758

LEO XIII (1878-1903), AE-30, The Good Shepherd. Extraordinary Medal, 1900. Patrignani 53.
avers: - LEO•XIII•PONT•MAX•AN•XXV, Leo XIII bust left, JOHNSON under the bust
revers: - PASTOR-BONVS-ANIMAM-SVAM-DAT-PRO-OVIBVS-SVIS, "The Good Shepherd lays down his life for his sheep".
exe:-/-//--, diameter: 30mm, weight:11,85g, axes: h,
material: AE, mint: , artist: JOHNSON, date: 1900 A.D.,
ref: Patrignani 53.


 Best regards
 Q.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on May 04, 2015, 08:47:41 pm
Nice medal Q.  Always thought that was an interesting rendering of the Good Shepherd.  There are several other interpretations on papal related medals and it would make an interesting side collection.



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: quadrans on May 04, 2015, 11:57:35 pm
Nice medal Q.  Always thought that was an interesting rendering of the Good Shepherd.  There are several other interpretations on papal related medals and it would make an interesting side collection.



 Thank you  +++
 Q.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on May 20, 2015, 09:29:03 am
Pendant-style silverplated medallion I picked up on eBay recently, for the Holy Year 1875.  Interesting, in that this was only five years after Rome fell to Italian forces, and Bl. Pius IX had become a self-styled Prisoner in the Vatican.

Consequently, while a Holy Year was proclaimed, there were no public ceremonies.  No traditional Opening of the Porta Sancta and so on. Which makes this medal odd, in that on the reverse the Porta Sancta is clearly depicted as open.

Another unusual feature is the use of a regnal date.  While this is typical of official Papal medals, it is very unusual to see one on a (presumably) privately-produced medallion like this.  Yet here it is, A :dot: XXIX.  It looks almost as if the engraver copied a Papal 2-Lire piece (of 1866-1870) when he engraved the obverse die for this medallion.

29mm, 9.45g
References: Bartolotti XXIX-10; Berni 314


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on May 20, 2015, 10:54:57 am
Nice example Pabst.  To cover the 1875 Jubilee, I have exactly the same piece, but unsilvered brass and with the mount (very well) removed.  My sense was this was just an "unofficial" souvenir to mark the occasion and utilized stock types that would be immediately recognized.  I hadn't really thought about it but the notion of using a coin as the model for the obverse makes sense.  I guess its not as clear to me that the door is open on the reverse; I thought the arch just was to symbolize the door and not have any further significance.  Also, I think I've seen the cross design as a seal on the closed door (albeit much smaller) but am not sure so need to poke around the references a bit.  Interesting in any case.  

Thanks for sharing!

edited to add: the 1933 and 1950 medals in my gallery are examples of what I was thinking of.  In both cases a holy door is shown with varying cross designs in place of the doors.  Didn't think either specifically indicated that the door was open but I certainly may well have misunderstood the design.  Need to go look at these more carefully.   Interesting!  


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on July 02, 2015, 04:03:42 pm
Sunday last was the feast day of SS Peter and  Paul which has traditionally been the release/distribution date for the Vatican/Papal annual medal.  Haven't seen anything on the Vatican numismatic site, ebay italy, etc and wondered if anyone had heard anything/have any info about it.  Thanks! ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Iosephus on July 10, 2015, 05:34:49 pm
News at last on the annual medal!

Today's issue of L'Osservatore Romano features a brief article about this year's medal:
(http://www.renaissancemedals.com/misc/2015medal-large.jpg)

Unfortunately, the image in the online pdf is horribly small, and looks pretty bad blown up, so here's a smaller version:
(http://www.renaissancemedals.com/misc/2015medal-small.jpg)

In a change, the obverse features the Francis's coat of arms, rather than his portrait.  The reverse shows the Ecstasy of St. Teresa.  There is already some grumbling on an Italian forum about how "Bergoglio continues the work of demolishing the papacy and also wanting to destroy a nearly unbroken tradition of six centuries".


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on July 10, 2015, 09:38:12 pm
Thanks for posting the article Joe.  I gather this is for the 500th anniversary of St Teresa's birth.  Interesting about the distribution figures - gold is capped at a relatively small 150, only 50 of which are sold individually.  I wonder if additional medals are being held back for presentations, etc as they were used traditionally.  

An acquaintance contacted me a couple of days ago and a silver one should be on its way.  I only saw a rather poor pic today tho and also immediately noticed no pope.  Except for a couple of annuales issued during a Sede Vacante,  this is the first medal featuring the arms rather than a portrait so its not a surprise about the grumbling.  On the other hand, while not otherwise remarkable, the design is vastly superior to that used last year.   ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on October 23, 2015, 09:34:03 am
taking a look at eBay this morning, I saw this.  

Baiocco, 1848-R, ANN. III regnal date.  Quite distinct final 8 over 7 overdate



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on December 21, 2015, 10:54:10 pm
A new official medal was issued by the Vatican to commemorate the opening of the "Extraordinary Holy Year of Mercy" on December 8th which will run until November 20 of next year. Not being catholic, I don't quite get the extraordinary holy years, but being an avid Vatican medal collector I ordered one which just arrived today. The scan is from the seller. 

The medal is 35mm available in both silver and bronze and limited to 20k of each (I think). The obverse has Francis praying before the holy door. The parable of the Good Samaritan is used for the reverse and recalls the year 7 annual medal of Pius XII (1945) using the same theme.

For me, the medals of this pope have ranged from workmanlike but uninspired to awful but this is probably the best of the lot so far. The smaller 35mm size makes the design seem a bit cramped but reasonably and traditionally executed, a significant theme that has prior ties, etc all make it, perhaps not a winner, but a welcome addition. And I really like holy year medals and 2025 (the next "regular" jubilee year) seems a long way away. Just MHO.  ;D


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on May 26, 2016, 10:17:56 am
Unlisted variety in Muntoni!

1850-B, copper 5 Baiocchi type 2 (no wreath below arms), ANNO.V.

The overall type is Muntoni 79, but the problem there is that there is no ANNO.V. variety listed for Bologna in 1850.  The only 1850 Bologna listing for Muntoni 79 is ANN.V., though there is an ANNO.V. listed for 1851-B.  

My specimen, beyond the usual dinged rims of these massive (over 41 grams!) copper coins, is damaged by someone scraping off the numeral "5" on the reverse.  Small laminar peel to the right of the mintmark, below the 0 in the date.

Good old reliable--though often inaccurate--Cinagli (in Vitalini's supplement) does list the coin correctly as Cin 223.

other references:
Berman 3321
KM 1346
Craig 170
Eklund 991




Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on February 03, 2017, 10:04:58 pm
Vatican City: Portrait of Pope Francis Removed from Circulation Euro Coins

The 2016 Vatican annuale medal omitted the pope's image, substituting his coat of arms. To me this seemed to be a significant departure from the use of the portrait on both Vatican City and earlier papal coins/medals and it now appears that the 2017 coinage will follow suit. This is an excerpt from http://news.coinupdate.com/ which was shared by Whitmancoin on facebook and which offers an explanation:

The Treasury of Vatican City State (or the Holy See) announced on the 24th January that from March of this year, new 2017-dated coins and those thereafter issued will no longer carry the effigy of His Holiness Pope Francis. The decision was carried out at the behest of the pontiff, and revised designs without the pope’s portrait were submitted to the European Union’s official Journal, who published the details and images of the new circulation-type coins.

It was widely known that the pope has, since the start of his pontificate, been uncomfortable with his portrait on money, especially as he has campaigned for greater distribution of the world’s wealth among the poorest. The former Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio from Argentina was elected as the head of the Catholic Church and took the name of Pope Francis after the abdication of Pope Benedict XVI in March 2013. The first euro coins that included portraits of Pope Francis were issued in March 2014 and followed in 2015 and 2016. The coins included were 2- and 1-euro bimetallic coins, as well as 50-, 20-, 10-, 5-, 2-, and 1-cent coins.

The tradition of depicting the princes or heads of state of the Holy See on coinage has been in effect for centuries, as the possessions of the Vatican are recognised sovereign territory.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on September 28, 2017, 10:32:56 am
Another example of an overdate....found on eBay

Gregory XVI 1841 over 0, R, An XI

Muntoni 19g


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on December 31, 2017, 12:19:22 pm
Happy New Year Papal collectors!

Saturday I received my last Christmas present. This is an exciting piece for me since I now I only need the year 2 example to have the annuales in silver complete from 2017 through Gregory XVI's reign. (scan is cropped from the seller's pix)  

This medal has a lettered edge which seems quite unusual for the medals I've encountered and I have only one other, a piece of Pius IX. The incscription is: "DONO DI SUA Sa GREGORIO XVI ALL' INGr CHEVILLET LI 24 LUGLIO 1844." Fiddling with Google Translates seems to mean something like "Gift of his Holiness Gregory XVI at the (his) arrival CHEVILLET LI July 24, 1844"  My assumption is that Chevillet Lia a personal name - the recipient of the medal perhaps - or is it something else? I've requested assistance from an Italian site in which I participate but I'd be grateful if anyone here has any insight as well.  Also, are these engraved edges really that uncommon or have I just had bad luck in finding them?  



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: quadrans on December 31, 2017, 12:26:46 pm
Great piece ... +++

Q.

p.s.

Happy New year .... ;) +++


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on January 01, 2018, 05:50:55 pm
Great piece ... +++

Q.

p.s.

Happy New year .... ;) +++

TY Q.  And back at ya for the new year.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on February 11, 2018, 02:51:03 pm
I'm just getting around to updating my testone gallery, adding a number of coins I've purchased over the last year or so.  I purchased this lower grade M 110 because the die break at 3 o'clock on the reverse is much smaller/earlier than that which appears on the higher grade piece that was already in my gallery (image is from the seller).  While die breaks are quite common on the medals and some of the other states, I don't recall encountering many on the coinage of this era.


 


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: quadrans on February 11, 2018, 11:25:35 pm
Nice piece, congratulation,  +++

Q.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on February 13, 2018, 07:33:20 am
TY Q.  Always fun to come across these small varieties/striking anomalies.



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Molinari on July 04, 2018, 09:25:53 am
My first Papal item:

Rome, Gregory X (Tebaldo Visconti), 1272-1276 Bulla 1272-1276, PB 38mm., 90.33g. GRЄ/GORIVS/· P P · X’ · in three lines; all within linear-beaded border; (Ω above P P). Rev. S PA S PE Bare heads of Sts. Paul and Peter, facing slightly r. and l., respectively, each within beaded halo; cruciform sceptrr between; all within beaded-linear border. Serafini I 1-2.

This will make for a nice display in the library, especially if I can find a matching document.


Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: stlnats on September 05, 2018, 08:13:47 am
Volume VI of CNORP is coming to market.  Covers the medals of 3 popes in the early - mid 17th century.   A bit pricey (ca US$200+ I think) but  is an incredibly researched, well illustrated reference necessary for anyone interested in the medals of the period.  It's in Italian but is easy to use. 



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Pabst Geschichte on February 13, 2019, 12:46:41 pm
Did a search on the web for John Carlin Ryan, the founder of this discussion board "Fobilus Fanaticus", in hopes of maybe seeing if he had ever published Volume 2 of his A Handbook of Papal Coins...it turns out he passed away in July 2017.  Here's is the obituary I found. 
http://www.ruckfuneral.com/obituary/john-ryan
Requiescat in Pace.


Nice man. I met him once, and bought an Innocent XI half-piastra from him, back in 1998.



Title: Re: The Papal Corner
Post by: Robert_Brenchley on February 13, 2019, 04:30:38 pm
Sad to hear that. He sent me a copy of his book.