Coinage on the occasion of sieges in the 16th century
Octagonal Klippe of 5 Soldi Planet, 1515, Brescia. Ø 24 mm, 3,18 g.
CNI IV p.88 n.1; Brause-Mansfeld -; Egg p.86.
Coined during the siege by Venetian and French troops.
Obv.: + / I5I5 / Y (= Ycardo) between M - A, around circle decorated with flowers,
with die break (crack in the die, rising in the embossing)
Rev.: Crowned double-headed eagle, surrounded by a circle decorated with flowers and festoons.
Teston, 1516, Verona. Ø 27 mm, 9,05 g. CNI VI p.279 n.3; Egg 4 (p.180).
Obv.: MAXIMILIANVS CAESAR - Bust in armour, under the shoulder 1516.
crowned and nimbed double-headed eagle with heart shield Austria.
• Erich Egg: Die kaiserliche Münzstätte in Verona in: Die Münzen Kaiser Maximilians I. Innsbruck (1971),
S.84-86. Ausschnitt als PDF
• Hermann Wiesflecker: Kaiser Maximilian I., Band IV (1508-1519), München 1981
"Three things are needed for war, firstly money, secondly money and thirdly mone"
[Imperial general Raimondo Count of Montecuccoli, 1609-1680] - and emergency money if necessary.
Coins of necessity were used when official means of payment were too scarce or not available at all.
Siege coin, Obsidional coins, Siege coins were minted in besieged cities, usually as klippe. In the fortresses cut off from supplies, money was mainly needed for troop salaries; the prices of scarce foodstuffs also rose. As the citizens hid their money, the commanders usually felt compelled to mint siege coins from existing stocks of precious metals. They often used their own tableware, occasionally also church utensils.
Field coins were minted by commanders when there was a shortage of money, similar to the siege coins of the besieged.
Klippe means in Swedish something like "cut with scissors". Klippes are quadrangular or polygonal coins of regular or irregular shape.
Single-sided heptagonal emergency klippe of 1 ducat, 1524, Pavia. 26 x 23 mm, 2,72 g.
Brause-Mansfeld pl.A; CNI IV p.508 n.1; Friedb.949; Maillet pl. XCIII, 1.
The initials A-L (Antonio Leyva, commander of the defenders), cross at the top, date I5Z4 at the bottom, surrounded by pearl stripes.
Single-sided silver klippe of 1 Testone, 1524, Pavia. Ø 24-21 mm, 8,81 g.
I5Z4 / CES / ·PP·OB· - An omega-shaped sign above the initials PP.
Also occurring as an octagonal copper emergency klippe.
Ducato ossidionale (1527), Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome. 45x33 mm, 36,81 g.
Brause-Mansfeld pl.29,1; Muntoni 21; Berman 832; Dav.8326.
This piece is rather heavier. Other pieces are polygonal and better tailored to match the die.
Obv.: CLEMENS·VII· - ·PONTIF·MAX - Medici coat of arms, tiara and crossed keys.
Rev.: ·S·PA+S·PE - ·ALMA·ROMA· "Sanctus Paulus, Sanctus Petrus, Nourishing mother of Rome",
nimbed busts of the saints facing each other, mint master's mark below.
1/4 Ducato n. d., Rome. Ø 32 mm, 8,21 g.
Brause-Mansfeld -, compare pl.29,6 (there another mint master mark); Muntoni 36; Traina pl.CDVII,6i.
Obv.: CLEMENS·VII· - PONTIF·MAX· - Medici coat of arms under tiara and crossed keys.
Rev.: ·Q / VAR / T· / ·DVC· "Quarter ducat" F (mirror-inverted) and a lying crescent moon (undetermined mint master in Rome), all between laurel branches.
Medal 1529. Dies by Hieronymus Magdeburger. Ø 45 mm, 20,63 g.
Habich 1887; Katz 36.
Obv.: ¤ FERDINANDVS◦DEI◦GRACIA◦HVNGARIÆ◦BOEMIÆ◦ET C◦REX /
Bust to the left with a wide-brimmed hat, a coat wrapped around him and the Order of the Golden Fleece.
Rev.: ¤ DA:MICHI:VIRTVTEM:CONTRA:HOSTES:TVOS:DOMINE /
QVIA◦TV - ADIVT - OR◦ME - VS◦ES◦
"Give me strength against your enemies, Lord, for you are my support"
Floral cross, in the corners the shields of Bohemia, Croatia, Dalmatia and Hungary,
in the center the Austro-Castilian coat of arms.
The medal was given away to motivate officers in the fight against the approaching Turks.
Klippe of 6 Kreuzer 1529, Vienna. 17x18 mm, 3,26 g. Brause-Mansfeld pl.42,13; Markl 298/305.
Obv.: TVRCK | BLEGERT | WIEN | 15Z9 "Turks besiege Vienna" between leaf ornaments.
Rev.: Cross, in the angles the coats of arms of Castille, Austria, Hungary and Bohemia.
In the city, siege money came into circulation in the shape of klippes made from
melted gold and silver equipment.
Klippe of ducat 1529, Vienna. 17x17 mm, 3,54 g. Brause-Mansfeld pl.42,9; Markl 278.
Obv.: TVRCK·BLE | GERT·WI | :EN: - Crowned and armored bust between 15 - Z9
Rev.: Cross, in the angles the coats of arms of Austria, Castille, Hungary and Bohemia.
While Vienna miraculously escaped the Turkish attack, Emperor Charles V negotiated with the Pope in Bologna about completely different matters. Imperial troops stood not in Vienna but near Florence :
1/2 Scudo n. d. (1529-30), Florence. Ø 29 mm, 16,70 g.
Brause-Mansfeld pl.27,2; Bernocchi 4040.
Obv.: SENATVS·POPVLVS·Que·FLORENTINVS· "Council and people of Florence"
Florentine coat of arms.
Rev.: IESVS·REX·NOSTER·ET·DEVS·NOSTER· "Jesus, our King and God"
Cross decorated with a crown of thorns, in the angles: dot - dot - N - coat of arms (sign of the person responsible for the minting, Nicolo di Braccio Guicciardini)
Struck in the city of Florence during the siege by papal and imperial forces.