Contemporaries in the Holy Roman Empire
Medals up to 1547
Second government, 1552-1554 (as duke)
2 Thalers 1539, Buchholz. Ø 49 mm, 58,05 g. Keilitz 246.1; Schnee 89; Dav.9724.
Obv.: IOANnes FRIDericus DVX SAXoniae ELECTor ET BVRGGRAF MAIGDeburgensis·FIERI·FEcit (Mz.)
"John Frederick, Duke of Saxony, Elector and Burggrave of Magdeburg had this coin minted"
Effigy in electoral coat, long electoral sword on his shoulder and both hands at the grip.
Rev.: SPES - MEA - IN - DEO - EST - 1 5 3 9 "My hope is in God"
Shield of 12 arms and crests for Thuringia, Saxonia and Meissen;
under the central shield of Electoral Saxonia (crossed swords): arms of the Burggraviate Magdeburg.
1/4 Guldengroschen 1541, T-Buchholz. Ø 27 mm. Keilitz 250.
Rev.: ·SPES·MEA·IN· - ·DEO·EST·1541
Joint coinage 1539-41 together with duke Henry of the Albertine Line
Thaler 1540, Annaberg. Ø 40 mm, 29,0 g. Keilitz 152; Schnee 94; Dav.9728.
Obv.: (¤) IOHANnes F (¤) RIdericus·ELE (¤) Ctor·DVX·S (¤) AXoniae·FIeri·Fecit
interrupted with the coat of arms of the Electorate (top), Meissen (right), Thuringia and Saxony.
Rev.: (¤) HEINRIcus (¤) ·DVX·S (¤) AXoniae·FIEri·Fecit (¤) ·1540 ⊕
interrupted with the coat of arms of Saxony, Meissen, Palatinate Saxony and Thuringia
⊕ = Sign of mintmaster N.Streubel 1539-45 in Annaberg
Joint coinage 1539-40 together with brother John Ernest and duke Henry of the Albertine Line
Thaler 1539, Buchholz. Ø 39 mm. Keilitz 170; Schnee 91; Dav.9726.
Obv.: (¤) IOHANnes·FRidericus (¤) ELECtor·DVX (¤) SAXoniae·BVRGgravius (¤) MAGdegurgensis (Mzz.)T
John Frederic in electoral robes with electoral sword; date 15-39 in the field.
Rev.: (¤) HENRIcus·ET (¤) IOHANnes·ER (¤) NESTus·DVXces (¤) SAXoniae·FIeri·FEcerunt
Effigies from Henry and John Ernest facing each other.
Joint coinage 1540-42 together with brother John Ernest and duke Maurice of the Albertine Line
Maurice followed his father Henry in 1541.
Thaler 1540, Buchholz. Hybrid 1541. Ø 39 mm. Keilitz 176; Schnee 98; Dav.9729.
Obv.: Legend as before, head in profile, date now 15-40.
Rev.: (¤) MAVRITIVs (¤) ET·IOHANnes (¤) ERNESTus·DVces (¤) SAXoniae·FIeri·FEcerunt·
Effigies from Maurice and John Ernest facing each other. T (sign for Buchholz) at the right.
Compare the effigies with two well-known oil paintings:
1. 1531 from Lucas Cranach the Elder , the court painter of Saxony [51x37 cm, Louvre Paris], and
2. as prisoner of Charles V. ca.1550 from Tizian, court painter of the Emperor [103x83 cm, KHM Viena].
Cast bronze medal n. d. (about 1532) by Matthes Gebel. Ø 46,5 mm, 28,47 g.
Habich I,2 1080; Coll.Lanna 874; Kress Coll.599a.
Obv.: ·IO·FR·I·IO·I·RO·IMP - ELECT·PRIMOG·D·SAX - Bust to the right, triple necklace.
Rev.: SPES·MEA·IN·DEO·EST "My hope is in God"
Triple helmeted coat of arms.
Touch the image with the cursor in order to see the reverse.
Cast silver medal 1535 by Hans Reinhart the elder based on a model by Lucas Cranach.
Ø 66,2 mm, 59,08 g. Specimen in the coin cabinet from Staatliche Sammlungen Dresden Habich II,1 1935.
Obv.: IOANNS·FRIDERICVS·ELECTOR·DVX·SAXONIE·FIERI·FECIT·ETATIS - SVÆ·32Ꮺ
Bust to half left, bearded, bareheaded, fur hood, chain, with elector's sword and elector's hat.
On the ruff REN ALS IN EREN ("Nobody can defend everything in honor")
HR ligated under the hand.
Rev.: SPES♣MEA♣IN♣DEO♣EST♣ANNO - NOSTRI♣SALFATORIS♣ M·D·X·X·X·VᏪ
Triple helmeted coat of arms with heart shield (elector's swords).
The wooden model in Gotha (Habich Tf.CCIV, 3a) carries SALVARORIS, while the
specimen in St. Petersburg also bears SALFATORIS. [Habich]
Silver medal 1547, model by Ludwig Neufahrer. Ø 33,5 mm, 12,25 g.
Habich see I,2 1400; Coll.Mers.564.
Obv.: IOANNES FRIDERICVS DVX ELECTOR SAXONIAE D M XLVII
Rev.: VERO[a]E RELILIONI ET - LIBERTA GERMA PRO "For true religion and free Germany"
Stuck silver medal 1547 by Ludwig Neufahrer. Ø 36,2 mm, 17,22 g. Habich I,2 1402.
Obv.: ·DEI·GRA IOH·FRID·SAC·RO·IMP·ARCHIM ELECTOR·DVX·SAXO·FG·C· - Bust left.
Rev.: :·SPES·MEA·IN·DEO·EST·ANNO·ZC· | ·LVDwig·NEVfahrer·FEcit: "My hope is in God"
Spes sits praying to the left, his head turned to the right, on top the dove of the Holy Spirit in rays,
on each side a tree and bushes.
Medals as prisoners of the emperor, 1547-52
One-sided old galvanoplastic museum production: oval medal n. d. (about 1550).
Model by the 'Meister Philipps I. des Großmütigen'. Ø 84x70 mm, 190,99 g. Habich 2190.
VON GOTTES GNADEN IOHANNES FRIDERICHVS HERTZOG ZVO SAX
A scar on his left cheek from the wound he received in the battle of Mühlberg.
Touch the illustration to see the back.
Cast silver medal 1551 by Matthes Gebel, Specimen in the coin cabinet in Dresden.
Ø 50,6 mm. Wettstreit in Erz 97; Habich I/2 1246.
Obv.: DEI GRAtia:IOannes:FRIDericus:SENIOR DVX SAXONie - ANNO.ÆTATis:SVÆ 48·CAPTIVITATis: VERO 4 "John Frederic the Elder, by the grace of God Duke of Saxony in his 48th year of life, but in the fourth (year) of his captivity"
Bust to the half-left, simply dressed, with a scar on the cheek under the left eye, which comes from the battle of Mühlberg.
Rev.: SPES·MEA·IN·DEO·EST·ANNO·SALVTIS· - M·D·XXXXXI
"My hope is in God in the year of salvation, 1551".
Compare with two well-known oil paintings:
1. 1531 by Lucas Cranach the elder, the Ernestine court painter [51x37 cm, Louvre Paris], and
2. as prisoner of emperor Charles V 1551 by Tizian, Charles's court painter [KHM Vienna].
Thaler, 1552, Saalfeld. Ø 40 mm, 28,6g. Schnee 144;, Schulten 3172; Dav.9748.
Obv.: ¤ IOannes·FRIDERicus·SENIor - NATVs·ELECtor·SAXoniae·
"John Frederic, first born Elector of Saxony" - Bust above arms (Electoral Saxony & Saxony).Rev.: CAROLVS:V:ROManorum:IMPerator:SEMPer·AVGustus:155Z
Title of the emperor, crowned double eagle with orb on the breast,
design and legend in accordance with the 2nd Imperial Mint Order of 1551.
Double Goldgulden,1552, Saalfeld. Ø 27 mm, 6,48 g. Friedberg 2937.
Obv.: IO·FRIDER·SEN - · - NAT·ELEC·SAXO· bust and arms (Electoral Saxony & Saxony)
Cast silver medal 1553. Ø 38,7 mm, 27,30 g. Coll. Merseb. 2901.
Obv.: IOANNES·FRIDERICVS·SENIOR·DVX·SAXO·ET·NA·EL· - Bust John Frederic's from the front.
Bust of his wife Sybille from the front between date 15 - 53.
1/2 Thaler n. d. (1554), Saalfeld. Ø 33 mm, 14,36 g. Koppe 244.
on his death (March 3, 1554) and on the death of his wife Sibylle of Cleves, who died a few days earlier.
Obv.: Effigy to the left, below the arms of the Electorate (swords) and Saxonia.
Rev.: Bust of his wife Sibylle, almost from the front, with hat, cloak and pearl necklace.