Johannes Dantiscus , "Father of Polish Diplomacy" and humanist,
Bishop of Chelmno (Culm) 1530-38 and in Warmia 1538-48
Johannes Dantiscus (pol. Jan Dantyszek), born in Danzig (Gdansk) in 1484 with family's name Höfer, took on the nickname Dantiscus in order to emphasize that he was a citizen of Danzig (latin: Dantiscum). He studied in Greifswald, Krakow and Bologna, where he did his doctorate. Long journeys took him to Greece, Palestine and Arabia. From 1523 he worked as secretary, orator and envoy of King Sigismund I of Poland
. In his service he spent many years at the court of Charles V. From 1526 to 1529 he was in Spain, before becoming bishop in Culm in 1530 and then in Warmia, where he died in 1548. An extensive correspondence of over 20,000 letters has been preserved.
When you mouse-touch this old graphic from Köhler's coin amusements (1750) you see a digital photo of
Model in wood 1529
the specimen in the Coin Cabinet, Bode-Museum Berlin.
, cut by Christoph Weiditz
. Ø 63 mm.
Habich I/374; Köhler's M.-Belustigungen 22 (1750) St.24 p.185; Bode-Museum, Obj.18200344 displayed.
"In the 44th year of age, Dantiscus in Spain was shaped like this"
Bearded effigy with hat and patterned embroidered coat, half to the right.
·SVDE·VIRTVS⁕ NIL·VERÆ·PENITVS·NOBILITATIS·HABET· "Unless these wings and the sword with the knotty sticks preserve virtue, you have absolutely nothing of the true nobility" - Quartered coat of arms (1+4: Pair of wings, 2+3: sword and log), helmet, crest (harp). In the field: coat of arms of Jerusalem (top left), R with key (top right), half wheel with sword (bottom left) and pilgrim sticks and seashell (bottom right).
Laterally below: 15 - 29.
David's harp refers to his coronation as poets in 1515. The cross of Jerusalem, a large Roman R with the Petrus key, half a wheel with a sword (Catherine symbol), and the shell with the crossed pilgrim sticks represent Johannes Dantiscus pilgrimages to Jerusalem, Rome, St. Catherine's Monastery (Sinai) and Santiago de Compostela.
During his time as an envoy, Johannes Dantiscus met numerous personalities and scholars across Europe, including the medalist Christoph Weiditz, who followed an invitation from Dantiscus to Spain. At the Spanish court, Weiditz also created a medal on Hernán Cortés in 1529 and his medal on Mercurino Gattinara.