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I've got my own elephant now!


Ursus
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Here is a recent addition to my collection of medieval bracteates.

A couple of weeks back, @shanxi posted his wonderful example of this type along with an informative write-up here on NumisForums. I had been the underbidder on his coin in a recent Leu auction. It is a relatively scarce type, so I was both surprised and glad when a second coin came up in another auction shortly after. This time I managed to get it:

753764222_MADeutschlandetc.StauffenElefantenbrakteat.png.1fe8c6fd2c4ba2cd08306dd9301cf93f.png

Breisgau, Counts of Staufen, AR bracteate penny (“vierzipfliger Pfennig”), ca. 1330–1360. Obv.: elephant l., palanquin on back. Rev.: incuse design (bracteate). 17mm, 0.28g. Berger 2438; Wielandt: Breisgau 50; Slg. Wüthrich 55. Ex Teutoburger Münzauktion 149, lot 3107.

The elephant bracteates are fascinating both because of their design, which might possibly reference a scene from the Middle High German Alexanderlied also depicted on a 14th century tapestry from the Dominican convent Adelhausen at Freiburg, and because of their attribution. The find spots of surviving examples suggest that they were likely minted from silver mined in the Münstertal, a valley some 15 miles south of Freiburg, and under the authority of the Counts of Staufen.

This local dynasty is mostly known for one incident: According to more or less contemporary chronicles, Hans Ludwig of Staufen in 1540 hired an alchemist, a certain Doctor Faustus. That Doctor Faustus died soon after, apparently from accidentally poisoning himself during a chemical experiment. The smell of sulfur emanating from his body convinced the local population that he had been taken by the devil. Thus originated the legend that inspired Goethe's well-known play Faust.

Post your comments, elephants, and recent medieval acquisitions!

Edited by Ursus
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Nice example !

2 hours ago, Ursus said:

The smell of sulfur emanating from his body convinced the local population that he had been taken by the devil.

This is the inn where the devil is said to have taken Faust.

staufen_loewen_1908h.jpg.52536e266f4b9fb03112accc3adc6498.jpg

Edited by shanxi
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4 hours ago, Ursus said:

Breisgau, Counts of Staufen, AR bracteate penny (“vierzipfliger Pfennig”), ca. 1330–1360. Obv.: elephant l., palanquin on back. Rev.: incuse design (bracteate). 17mm, 0.28g. Berger 2438; Wielandt: Breisgau 50; Slg. Wüthrich 55. Ex Teutoburger Münzauktion 149, lot 3107.

Cute and nice coin - fantastic! Congratulations! 👍😍

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Posted (edited)

Ursus, congrats on scoring that very cool medieval elephant (I'm jealous of that sweet addition)

🤩

 

Ummm, here is one of my ol' medieval coins from that same time period ... it's also very cool, right?

 

The Duke of Milan, Bernabo and Galeazzo II Visconti, AR Grosso or Pegione

1355-1378 AD

Diameter: 25 mm

Weight: 2.50 grams

Obverse: Snake with maiden in its mouth between B G; above (an eagle) a aquiletta R/S

Reverse: Ambrose on the throne

Ex-stevex6

 

Duchy Dragon.jpg

 

Ursus => congrats again on adding that cool OP-addition

Cheers

Edited by Steve
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Thanks Jean ... man, that is cool, eh?

image.png.3162005fae90623fd896e3dd6db43a58.png    image.png.35acfff1873aff13fbefc775f999c1f9.png

 

Ummm, congrats again & again on your sweet OP-elephant-addition (sorry to derail your thread)

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Ummm, here are some of my ol' elephant examples ... like you, I'm a big fan of elephants

Oh, and the Faust reference is very fun and interesting (thanks for that tidbit)

Cheers

Anonymous AE Quadrans Prow & Elephant.jpg

Antiochos VI Dionysos.jpg

Augustus Elephant Sestertius.jpg

Demetrios I Serrate.jpg

elephant & lion.jpg

elephant.jpg

M caecilius.jpg

Seleukid Kingdom Antiochos I.jpg

Edited by Steve
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Thanks for the compliments, everyone!

On 10/7/2022 at 8:44 PM, Steve said:

The Duke of Milan, Bernabo and Galeazzo II Visconti, AR Grosso or Pegione

1355-1378 AD

Diameter: 25 mm

Weight: 2.50 grams

Obverse: Snake with maiden in its mouth between B G; above (an eagle) a aquiletta R/S

Reverse: Ambrose on the throne

That is a cool snake indeed, and your little herd of pachydermata is fantastic. Nice coins!

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