Numismatic Puzzle: Caesar

Today we have a first for you! This denarius of 44 BC was the first coin to feature a living Roman: Gaius Julius Caesar. He mentioned two good reasons for it: the star refers to the descent from Venus, the laurel wreath to Caesar’s achievements as a general.

Numismatic Puzzle: The Bernese Bear

In 1493, Bern started minting guldiners. This one is from 1494. The Bernese heraldic beast (a bear) is depicted beneath the imperial eagle, the emblem of the Holy Roman Empire, in order to demonstrate that the city was not subject to anyone except the emperor himself.

Numismatic Puzzle: Metz

The city of Metz, too, minted silver coins of the popular tornesel type. They depict St Stephen, to whom the city’s cathedral is dedicated. However, the building was still under construction when our piece was minted at some point after 1406.

Numismatic Puzzle: Filippo Maria Visconti

This fiorino d’oro from around 1430 depicts Filippo Maria Visconti, Duke of Milan, tearing along on his horse. The animal’s saddlecloth features the coat of arms (the “biscione”). It became the symbol of the whole of Lombardy – and also of car manufacturer Alfa Romeo.

Numismatic Puzzle: Charles of Anjou

On this silver coin from AD 1270, Charles of Anjou calls himself Senator of Rome – but he was actually the King of Sicily! Put the puzzle together and you will find the unusual legend.

Numismatic Puzzle: Ercole I d’Este

Testone, “big head”, is the name of silver coins that were introduced in 15th-century Italy. They are particularly large and heavy coins featuring the portrait of a ruler. Here you can see a magnificent testone by Ercole I d’Este, the Duke of Ferrara from around 1500.

Numismatic Puzzle: Taler of Moritz of Saxony (1547)

Today’s puzzle is a 1547 taler of Elector Moritz of Saxony.

Numismatic Puzzle: Christian IV (Denmark)

Today’s puzzle is a 1625 ½ krone of Christian IV of Denmark.

Numismatic Puzzle: Katanga Cross

Today’s puzzle is a Katanga cross from southern Kongo.

Numismatic Puzzle: Isabella I and Ferdinand II

Today’s puzzle is a Dobla Excelente (c.1497 ) of the “Catholic Monarchs” Ferdinand II of Aragón and Isabella I of Castile.