Author Topic: Second Mexican Empire centavo  (Read 1587 times)

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Offline bart

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Second Mexican Empire centavo
« on: January 25, 2010, 09:21:26 PM »
The following coin is part of a short historical period in Mexican history: the Second Empire (1864-1867), when Mexico was occupied by the French forces of Napoleon III. The French emperor had invaded Mexico as the country couldn't pay its debts. He put a puppet emperor on the throne : archduke Maximilian of Habsburg. The Mexican empror was the brother of the Austrian emperor Franz Joseph I and brother-in-law of the Belgian king Leopold II.
He had problems to maintain his regime against the rebels of Benito Juarez. The moment Napoleon III withdrew his troops, the Empire collapsed. Maximilian's wife Charlotte returned to Europe to look for support. When Maximilian was defeated in 1867 and executed, Charlotte retired on the castle of Boechout near Brussels where she died in 1927.

The coin was struck at the Mexican Mint. Note the crowned eagle. (KM#384)


Offline Figleaf

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Re: Second Mexican Empire centavo
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2010, 04:32:18 PM »
Max was a strange figure, wasn't he? I think he really cared about Mexico and the Mexicans and thought this was enough to make his reign a good thing for the country and the people. He seems to have been deluded also about what his reign as a foreign-imposed monarch meant to Mexicans. His last words reportedly were "May my blood which is about to be shed, be for the good of the country. Viva Mexico, viva la independencia!" He's a classical tragic hero, though, doing honestly what he thought was best and thereby destroying himself.

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