Coins in art

Started by Figleaf, July 16, 2011, 04:11:08 PM

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chrisild

This one is "art" only in a very broad sense. ;D But I found it interesting. You may know the Italian TV series Leo da Vinci. This animation series is aimed at kids and deals with the adventures and inventions of young (15 years or so) Leonardo.

In the second episode, Leo and his friends are faced with some mean guys who want to steal some "donum" coins. These are gold pieces given to people of Florence who, despite being poor, had been helpful to others. (Thanks for not asking me about the historical background - sure, the Medici family existed, but the rest ...) Anyway, in one scene "Leo" wins a silver replica of a donum coin for the best painting. The pieces shown resemble the fiorino d'oro coins.

Of course, thanks to one of Leo's inventions, the stolen coins make it back to Florence and can be given to the "helpful poor". Here is the episode, in German and low quality. A description in English is here. People who pay the German media fee (Rundfunkbeitrag) can watch the episode in better quality here for example. Pretty much the same applies to Italy; don't know about other countries. In any case, the episodes are for young people, and the "coins" are attached. ;D

Figleaf

Good copy. The legend +FLORENTIA is clear and looks genuine, but the metal is a screamingly obvious giveaway, of course. Don(at)um is a gift. While I can imagine a rich, happy and possibly not quite sober Florentine giving a gold piece to a beggar for some reason, I find it very difficult to imagine that it happened systematically.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

chrisild

Jan van Hemessen has been mentioned in this topic before; here is his "Parable of the Unmerciful Servant". Emdebbed link below; if you look at the article, you can find the image in various sizes.



The funny thing is, I came across that one while looking for Croesus. ;D There is a painting by Claude Vignon that comes with this description: "Parable of the Unforgiving Servant, formerly called Croesus Receiving Tribute from a Lydian Peasant" ... Again, other sizes can be viewed from the article page.



Figleaf

#93
I made an enlargement of the part with the coins. Almost all are unidentifiable. The exception is the silver coin just below the centre of the fragment catching more light than its monetary neighbours. It shows the climbing lion of Flanders.

Hermessen.jpg

Disregarding coins issued after the death of Jan Sanders van Hermessen, the latest reasonable sized silver coin with this design are the stuivers of Gent issued 1488-89, when the city was once again revolting against the Habsburgs. The coin was therefore issued before the painter was born.

Vh H 202.jpeg

Jan Sanders would not live long enough to see the next anti-Habsburg revolt (1572), but he must have realised the tension, especially between the fiercely catholic Philip II (1555-1589) pursuing the policy of unifying the Habsburg lands and levying heavy taxes and his Flemish subjects, increasingly tilting towards protestantism, jealous of their rights, independent-minded and traders who would see taxes as undermining their ability to compete on global markets.

In that light, it is not far-fetched to see the only recognisable coin as a subtle statement of support for the locals and their resistance against the house of Habsburg.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

chrisild

Quote from: Figleaf on November 03, 2022, 05:41:58 PMIn that light, it is not far-fetched to see the only recognisable coin as a subtle statement of support for the locals and their resistance against the house of Habsburg.

Interesting! :like: Had not seen it "in that light" so to say.