The English Civil War left a rich numismatic history, with an
abundance of coins and medals.
One of the rarest pieces is a hand-engraved medal that was once in
the famed John G. Murdoch Collection, which was sold by Sotheby’s in 1904.
The silver medal was offered again March 14, by Fritz Rudolph
Künker, during the firm’s spring auction marathon, five auctions in
five days offering some 6,400 lots.
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The English Civil War pitted pro-royalist forces against Oliver
Cromwell and the pro-parliamentary group, with Cromwell emerging
victorious to govern the Commonwealth as Lord Protectorate. Although
the Parliament of Scotland proclaimed Charles II king on Feb. 5, 1649,
England entered a period known as the English Interregnum or the
English Commonwealth, during which the country was a de facto republic
led by Cromwell.
Another botched release from the United States
Mint: Inside Coin World:
The release of the Congratulations set adds to the narrative that
the U.S. Mint needs to overhaul its approach to limited-edition releases.
Little is known about the offered unsigned and undated medal, which
is in Extremely Fine condition.
The engraved, chased medal mocks Cromwell “for his political
activities in favor of the Turks,” according to the firm.
The medal weighs 36.63 grams and measures 63.3 millimeters in diameter.
The obverse shows Cromwell mounted on a horse, and the reverse
depicts a Turk trampling a cross at his feet. Also in the scene are a
monk, Turkish tents and troops.
The medal realized a hammer price of €18,000 (about $19,150 U.S.),
against an estimate of €1,000 ($1,064 U.S.). The buyer’s fee varies,
at either 20 or 23 percent, depending on bidder location.
Full details of the auction are available at the firm’s website.