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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Medieval & Modern Coins ▸ Medieval & Modern RaritiesView Options:  |  |  |   

Rare Medieval & Modern Coins

France, Provincial, Duchy of Normandie, William the Conqueror, 1035 - 1087, In the Name of William Rufus(?)

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There are two varieties of this denier, one with RICAR above the pediment (Legros 336) and the other with two W's (Legros 337, Dumas and Legros list only one specimen, in the Brussels Coin Cabinet). These two types were struck in the reign of William the Conqueror, after 1070. The RICAR issue may have been struck in the name of his son Richard (1057- c. 1081), Duke of Bernay; and the W's may refer to his son William Rufus (1056 - 1100), King of the English.
ME79660. Silver denier, Dumas pl. XX, 12 (Brussels Coin Cabinet); Legros 337 (same, unique); Poey d'Avant –; Duplessy Féodales –; Roberts –; De Wit Collection –, VF, toned, weight 0.801 g, maximum diameter 18.5 mm, die axis 0o, Rouen mint, c. 1070 - 1081; obverse + NORMANNA, cross pattée, pellets in each quarter, within linear inner border; reverse stylized cathedral facade, cross within arched doorway, two pellets above arch, two towers flanking (each a line topped with an annulet), pellet in triangular pediment, two W's (for William Rufus?) above the pediment; extremely rare; $480.00 (€427.20)
 


Crusaders, County of Tripoli, Raymond II, 1137-1152 A.D.

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Raymond II considered the Syrian Christians of Tripoli responsible for treachery which led to his father's defeat and death in a battle with Damascus. After the battle, he took many of them prisoner, and as William of Tyre wrote, "he visited upon them diverse tortures in the presence of the people, and, in just proportion to the enormity of the crime which they had committed, he caused them to suffer death in its most cruel forms." This act was praised by the Latin Christians as "the first proofs of valor which were given by the young count, whereby he won the affection of all his people and universal approval." In 1142 Raymond donated Krak des Chevaliers, an enormous fortress on the road from Homs to the Mediterranean, as well as other smaller castles, to the Knights Hospitallers. The Hospitallers were virtually independent in the county, for which they protected Tripoli's borders from frequent raids by the forces of Damascus and Zanki, the Turkish atabeg of Mosul and Aleppo.
ME76426. Bronze fraction, Sabine type 1, 194 - 199; Malloy Crusaders 5; Metcalf Crusaders 513; Schlumberger VI 5, VF, octagonal flan, light corrosion, earthen deposits, weight 1.017 g, maximum diameter 16.9 mm, Tripoli mint, c. 1145 - 1149; obverse + RAIMVNDVS (cross at the bottom, legend starts at 7:00, ), eight pointed star, pellet between each ray, shallow crescent with horns up below, all within inner border; reverse cross pattée with three annulets at the end of each arm, crossed by smaller cross with crescent horns inward pellet and annulet at the end of each arm; very rare; $200.00 (€178.00)
 


Normans, Kingdom of Sicily, Roger II, 1105 - 1154 A.D.

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Roger II was King of Sicily, son of Roger I of Sicily and successor to his brother Simon. He began his rule as Count of Sicily in 1105, became Duke of Apulia and Calabria in 1127, and then King of Sicily in 1130. Roger II is remembered for having united all of the Norman conquests in Italy under one strong central government. He was also the grandfather of Frederick II.
ME70465. Bronze follaro, MIR 10 135 (R2), MEC Italy III 227, F, both sides off-center, weight 1.120 g, maximum diameter 14.9 mm, die axis 180o, Messina mint, 1150 - 1151 A.D.; obverse MP − ΘY (Greek abbreviation: Mother of God), half-length bust of the Virgin Orans facing; reverse Arabic inscription arranged as a cross: umila five hundred forty five (struck in 545 AH), four dots arranged in a square in each quarter; very rare; $180.00 (€160.20)
 


Kingdom of Naples, Charles V (HRE), 1516 - 1554

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Though always at war, Charles was a lover of peace. "Not greedy of territory," wrote Marcantonio Contarini in 1536, "but most greedy of peace and quiet." Charles pushed for the convocation of the Council of Trent, which began the Counter-Reformation. It was during Charles reign that Spain conquered the Aztecs of Mexico and Incas of Peru, and then extended its control across much of South and Central America. Charles provided five ships to Ferdinand Magellan whose voyage was the first circumnavigation of the Earth. He retired in 1556. The Habsburg Monarchy passed to his younger brother Ferdinand, and the Spanish Empire was inherited by his son Philip II. The two empires would remain allies until the 18th century. Charles was only 54 when he retired, but after 34 years of energetic rule he was physically exhausted and sought the peace of a monastery where he died aged 58. Charles' motto, Plus Ultra ('Further Beyond'), became the national motto of Spain.
ME66323. Bronze 2 cavalli, MIR Napoli 155/1 var. (obverse legend, pellets, MIR notes legend variations and varieties with pellets exist), gF, flan flaw reverse right edge, weight 3.510 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, die axis 45o, Naples mint, obverse CAROLVS V ROM IMP (sic), bare head right, pellet under neck; reverse + REX ARAGO VTRIVS S, imperial crown, three pellets in the field above, all within inner dot circle; rare variety; $160.00 (€142.40)
 


Kingdom of Naples and Sicily, Charles I of Anjou, 1266 - 1285

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Charles I of Anjou was the King of Sicily by conquest from 1266, though he had received it as a papal grant in 1262. He was expelled from the island in the aftermath of the Sicilian Vespers of 1282.
ME66338. Billon denaro, MIR 10 347 (R3), Biaggi 493 var. (R), MEC Italy III 643, VF, weight 0.405 g, maximum diameter 15.9 mm, die axis 135o, Apulia, Brindisi mint, early coinage, 1266 - 1278; obverse K DEI GRA REX SCL, cross fleury; reverse + DVC AP ET PRIC CAPE, shield with lis and three pendants, flanked by two small lis; rare; $140.00 (€124.60)
 


Normans, Southern Italy, Anonymous, Dukes of Apulia or Counts of Sicily & Calabria, c. 1081 - 1087 A.D.

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This coin is certainly imitative, as it weighs about 1/3 the normal weight of an official Class J Byzantine anonymous follis. Attribution to the Normans in Italy is based on the reputed find location and some similarity to other Byzantine imitatives issued by the Normans in Southern Italy and Sicily.
ME68381. Bronze follis, apparently unpublished, imitative of Byzantine class J follis (SBCV 1900, Constantinople, 1081 - 1118); MEC Italy III -, Biaggi -, Wroth Western -, aF, on a very small thin flan compared to Byzantine proto-types, weight 2.200 g, maximum diameter 21.0 mm, die axis 180o, uncertain S. Italy mint, c. 1081 - 1087 A.D.; obverse bust of Christ facing, cross behind, wears pallium and colbium, raising right in benediction, Gospels in left, crescents above, IC - XC flanking, facing bust of Christ, wearing nimbus cruciger, pallium, and colobium, holding book of Gospels; reverse Cross with globule and two pellets at each extremity, large crescent below, four globules around each surrounded by pellets; from an American collection; $140.00 (€124.60)
 


Kingdom of Sicily, Henry VI (HRE), 1194 - 1197

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Henry VI was King of Germany from 1190 - 1197, Holy Roman Emperor from 1191 - 1197, and King of Sicily from 1194 - 1197. In 1197, his German soldiers mercilessly suppressed a revolt in Italy, especially in southern Sicily. In this same year, Henry prepared for a Crusade, but, on 28 September, he died of malaria (or he may have been poisoned) in Messina. His son, Frederick II, inherited both the Kingdom of Sicily and the Imperial crown.
ME72172. Billon dirham fraction, Biaggi 1780 (R2), Spahr 2 (RR); MIR Sicily 457 (R); MEC Italy III, 477, VF, typical tight flan, slightly off-center, weight 0.944 g, maximum diameter 10.1 mm, die axis 0o, Palermo mint, 1194 - 1195; obverse Arabic legend in Nashki script: Harir / quaysar / aughust (Henry Caesar Augustus); reverse + / Z REX / SICI +; rare; $140.00 (€124.60)
 


Normans, Kingdom of Sicily, Roger II, 1105 - 1154 A.D.

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Until the Normans, Bari was governed by the Byzantines, with occasional interruption. It was a major depot for trade in Slavic slaves, destined most frequently for Muslim states including the Fatimid Caliphate which relied on Slavs purchased at Bari for its legions of Sakalaba Mamluks. Captured by Kalfun in 847, Bari was the center of the Emirate of Bari for 20 years. Emperor Louis II fought for five years to take Bari, and was only successful with the aid of a Byzantine naval blockade. In 885, Bari became the residence of the local Byzantine catapan. In 1025, under the Archbishop Byzantius, Bari became attached to the see of Rome and was granted "provincial" status. In 1071, Robert Guiscard captured Bari after a three-year siege. The Greeks refused the Latin ways and a civil war broke out in 1117. Bari was seized by Grimoald Alferanites, a native Lombard, and he was elected lord in opposition to the Normans. Grimoald later did homage to Roger II of Sicily, but then rebelled and was defeated in 1132. Bari was occupied by Manuel I Komnenos from 1155 to 1158. In 1246, Bari was sacked and razed to the ground. It was subsequently rebuilt, destroyed and rebuilt several times.
ME68460. Bronze follaro, MIR 10 134 (R), MEC Italy III 188 (Capua, Anfusus mint?); CNI XVIII p. 241, 1 - 3 (Capua, Pandolfo I Ironhead, 961 - 981), F, weight 0.782 g, maximum diameter 13.2 mm, die axis 135o, Bari mint, 1139 - 1154 A.D.; obverse figure of St. Demetrius standing facing, nimbate, sword in right, shield in left, OΛN downward on left; reverse pseudo-Kufic one-line inscription, cross below; ex Rosenblum Coins; rare; $135.00 (€120.15)
 


Kingdom of Naples, Charles V (HRE), 1516 - 1554

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Though always at war, Charles was a lover of peace. "Not greedy of territory," wrote Marcantonio Contarini in 1536, "but most greedy of peace and quiet." Charles pushed for the convocation of the Council of Trent, which began the Counter-Reformation. It was during Charles reign that Spain conquered the Aztecs of Mexico and Incas of Peru, and then extended its control across much of South and Central America. Charles provided five ships to Ferdinand Magellan whose voyage was the first circumnavigation of the Earth. He retired in 1556. The Habsburg Monarchy passed to his younger brother Ferdinand, and the Spanish Empire was inherited by his son Philip II. The two empires would remain allies until the 18th century. Charles was only 54 when he retired, but after 34 years of energetic rule he was physically exhausted and sought the peace of a monastery where he died aged 58. Charles' motto, Plus Ultra ('Further Beyond'), became the national motto of Spain.
ME66324. Bronze 2 cavalli, MIR Napoli 155/3 var. (normal obv legend ends IMP RO, MIR notes legend variations exist), F, weight 3.115 g, maximum diameter 21.3 mm, die axis 135o, Naples mint, obverse CAROLVS • IIII • RO • IMP (sic), bare head right, A under neck; reverse + REX ARAGO VTRIVS, imperial crown; rare variety; $120.00 (€106.80)
 


Normans, Kingdom of Sicily, Roger II, 1105 - 1154 A.D.

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Roger II was King of Sicily, son of Roger I of Sicily and successor to his brother Simon. He began his rule as Count of Sicily in 1105, became Duke of Apulia and Calabria in 1127, and then King of Sicily in 1130. Roger II is remembered for having united all of the Norman conquests in Italy under one strong central government. He was also the grandfather of Frederick II.
ME72282. Bronze follaro, MEC Italy III 162, Biaggi 1216 (R, double follaro), Spahr 53, MIR Sicily 19 (R2), aVF, well centered, slightly rough, weight 3.643 g, maximum diameter 19.2 mm, die axis 180o, Messina mint, 1127 - 1130 A.D.; obverse Roger standing facing, long cross in right, globus cruciger in left, wearing crown with pendilia, R over II on left; reverse Christ seated facing on wide throne, nimbus cruciger behind head, Gospels in both hands on lap; rare; $100.00 (€89.00)
 




  



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Medieval & Modern Rarities