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Lordship Mirandola
Mirandola is located in the Emilia-Romagna region near Modena. The Lordship was owned by the Pico family and was elevated to the Duchy of Mirandola in 1619 before being sold to Rinaldo d'Este in 1711, in order to be absorbed into the Duchy of Modena.

Giovanni Pico
Gian Francesco II Pico
Lodovico II Pico

Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, *1463, †1494
Giovanni Pico della Mirandola was a descendant son of Gianfrancesco I Pico, Lord of Mirandola and Count of Concordia. He was supposed to follow the ecclesiastical career, but became an important philosopher. He is known for his speech "On the Dignity of Man", in which he emphasises freedom of will as a characteristic feature of man. He impressed his contemporaries with his exceptional education and eloquence.


Cast bronze medal n. d. (1494), on his death. Model by Niccolò Spinelli, called Fiorentino.
Ø 81 mm, 175,33 g.   Armand I, 86, 9; Hill 998B; Kress Coll. 277; Pollard 314.

Obv.:   lOANNES PICVS - MIRANDVLENSIS  -  Bust to the right.
Rev.:   PVLCRITVDO AMMOR VOLVPTAS   "Beauty Love Pleasure"  -  The Three Graces.

Gianfrancesco II Pico della Mirandola, *1499, †1533
- nephew of Giovanni Pico -
Gianfrancesco, actually called Giovanni Francesco, was the son of Condottiere Galeotto I Pico and a daughter of Niccolò III d'Este. He was the nephew and pupil of the philosopher Giovanni II Pico (1463-94), whose biography he wrote, as well as that of Girolamo Savonarola, whose follower he was. Gian Francesco became known through his philosophical writings on skepticism.
As the eldest son, Gianfrancesco had been appointed sole heir by his father. His younger brother Lodovico I refused to recognise this and succeeded in driving Gianfrancesco into exile for eight years in 1502. Lodovico's son Galeotto II visited Gianfrancesco at his castle in 1533 and murdered him.
Emperor Maximilian granted Gianfrancesco II the right to mint coins in 1515.


Doppio ducato n. d.     Ø 27 mm, c.6,9 g.  RM III p.49 n.2; MIR 468; Friedb.744.
Obv.:   ·IO·FR·PICVS - ·MIRAN·C·C·  -  Bearded armored bust right.
Rev.:   ·AMORIS· - ·MIRACVLVM·   "The Miracle of Love"
St. Francis, bent to the right, receives the stigmata.


Doppio ducato n. d.    Ø 25 mm, 6,76 g.  Bernareggi 118; RM III p.50 n.4; MIR 470; Friedb.745.
Obv.:   ·I·F·PICVS - MIRAND·D·C·C·   -   Bust left with a flip cap.
Rev.:   ·AMORIS· - ·MIR - ACVLVM·   -   St. Francis kneels as before, but to the left.


Ducato n. d.    Ø 22 mm, 3,39 g.  CNI IX p.132 n.33; RM III p.52 n.7; Bellesia 3/A; Friedb.747.
Obv.:   ·IO·FR·PICVS·MIRANDVLE·Domini·CONcordiae·COMitis·
"... Lord of Mirandola, Count of Concordia"   -   bare head left.
Rev.:   Double-headed eagle above coat of arms, M - C (Massimiliano Cesare) and I - F (Johannes Francesco) on the sides.


Ducato n. d.    Ø 21 mm, 3,41 g.   CNI IX 29; Bernareggi 123; RM III p.52 n.8; Bellesia 22; Friedb.746.
Obv.:   ·IO·FR·PIC - VS·MIRANDVLA·Domini·Concordiae·Comitis  -  bust left with a flip cap.
Rev.:   Coat of arms as before.
About the coat of arms of the Pico family:
The eagle above the ribbon represents the Pico family, the checkerboard pattern is the family's original coat of arms. The two standing lions flanking the eagle represent the city of Concordia. The double-headed eagle above the coat of arms was adopted when Pico was elevated to the rank of Imperial Vicariate in 1311.


Mezzo testone n. d.    Ø 27 mm, 4,02 g.   RM III p.53 n.10; Bellesia 7; MIR 480.
Obv.:   IO·FRANCISCVS·PICVS II·  -  bare head left.
Rev.:   MIRANDVLE·D·CON·COM·  -  Opened book page, on it OMN / IN / O, below B / KA, everything between C / I -A.     [OMNINO means "necessarily"]

Galeotto II Pico *1508, Mirandola - †1550, Paris
- nephew of Gian Francesco II Pico -
Galeotto II Pico was condottiere, lord of Mirandola and count of Concordia. Until 1511 his mother took over the regency, in 1514 he was deprived of Mirandola, but he continued to rule Concordia. After killing his uncle Gianfrancesco II Pico while visiting him in 1533, he was able to reunite the two states and reign as the first count of Mirandola and Concordia. As he was persecuted and condemned by King Charles V, he had to find protection as a vassal of France in 1536.

Lodovico II Pico della Mirandola, Signori 1550-68
- son of Galeotto II Pico -
His father placed himself under the protection of the French king and sent his sons, including Lodovico II, to the court of King Francis I in 1536. When his father died in 1550, Lodovico returned from France to take possession of his fiefs. Shortly afterwards, due to his friendly relations with the French court, he found himself engaged in a war: Following the struggle for Parma and Piacenza after the death of Pier Luigi Farnese, imperial forces and the Pope allied for a siege of Mirandola in 1551, which ended only after 10 months with a truce. Most of the coins minted by Lodovico II at Mirandola were issued in order to cover the costs of the war, especially after the siege. They show allegories commemorating the Pope's defeat (war trophies, armour with olive branches, waves crashing against a rock, the personification of glory carrying a light in his right hand instead of blowing the trumpet of victory).
Ludovico took part in the defense of Siena, besieged by Cosimo I de' Medici and defeated at the Battle of Marciano. Then he retired to the castle of Mirandola, where he built the clock tower in 1561 and enlarged the walls of Mirandola to include the church of San Francesco and the convent. In November 1568 he uncovered a conspiracy of some traitors who wanted to kill him in the name of Girolamo Pico (grandson of Gianfrancesco II); after having them executed and their possessions confiscated, Lodovico II died eight days later at the age of 41, possibly from poisoning.


Mezzo Paolo n. d. Mirandola.    Ø 20 mm, 1.86 g.   RM III p.56 n.2; MIR 507.
Obv.:   LVD·P·II·MIRçCON·Q·DNS·  -  bareheaded bearded bust left.
Rev.:   LVMEN·CLARIVS·RVMORE·*·   "light more evident than noise"   -   Winged Glory steps left, holding up a shining star in the right hand and holding down a silent trumpet in the left hand.
Lodovico obviously wants to distinguish himself from his noisy opponents.
Mario Ravegnani Morosini schreibt dazu:   Al rovescio una bella ed interessante impresa. Viene infatti rappresentata la Fama che - secondo la descrizione del Ripa ripresa da Virgilio - è "donna vestita di un velo sottile succinto a traverso, raccolto a meza gamba, che mostri correre leggiermente" e "haverà due grand'ali" è "nella destra mano terrà una tromba" che significa "il grido universale sparso per gl'orecchi de gl'huomini". Sulla moneta in oggetto la tomba è nella siniestra perché la destra è occupata a sorreggere una stella, simbolo di "Azioni magnanime e grandi, ... gloriosa Nobiltà, e splendor di famiglia" alla quale si dà la precedenza come spiega il motto: "luce più manifesta del rumore".


Mezzo Paolo n. d. Mirandola.    Ø 19 mm, 1,06 g.   RM III p.57 n.3; MIR 511.
Obv.:   LVD·PICVS·II·MIR·CON·Q·DNS  -  Bust left, central dot on both sides.
Rev.:   QuaCumque·QuoDammodo·SORS·REVOLvat·AXIS·ERO   "whichever way and in whatever way fate turns I will be the axis"   -   armillary sphere.

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