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30247

Scotland: Mary gold Twenty-two Shillings 1553,...

2014 January 14 - 16 Selections From the Eric P. Newman Collection Part III Signature Auction - New York #3029

 
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Auction Ended On: Jan 14, 2014
Item Activity: 10 Internet/mail/phone bidders
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Location: Heritage Auctions
445 Park Avenue, 15th Floor
New York, NY 10022
Description:
Mary 22 Shillings

Very High Grade For Type
Mary gold Twenty-two Shillings 1553, S-5396, MS63 NGC. 1st Period (1542-58). Issued prior to Mary's marriage to Francis, the Dauphin, in 1558, by whom she had no issue. Her second marriage, to Henry Stewart, Lord Darnley, in 1565, was the foundation of the Stewart rule in both Scotland and England, as Mary gave birth to the future King James in 1566. Darnley was killed by a bomb in 1567, and in the same year she entered upon her third marriage, to the Earl of Bothwell. Both evidence and the coincidence of that union suggested that the two were responsible for the Lord Darnley's demise. Mary left behind her Catholicism, within which she was reared in France, swore to Protestant rites, and abdicated; she was beheaded in 1587. There was little or no forgiveness in the religious politics of her day.


While arguably her finest money comprised her gold coins, no coin was struck in that metal following her first widowhood in 1560 (save for the unique pattern now identified as S-5400). All of Mary Stewart's gold is either very scarce or rare today. This wonderful specimen captures the charm and luster of her happier early years; it is well struck on a fairly full flan, with boldly detailed legends. The crowned lion passant upon the royal crest is distinct, and much of the intended beaded border is present. On the reverse side the central monogram is deeply detailed but ever so slightly doubled; the legend is crisp but for the blundered first two letters, the date is bold, the two cinquefoils within the inner circle are sharp, the fields are delightful, and the outer beaded border is nearly complete. The charming legend in Latin, reading DILIGITE IVSTICIAM, translates to mean "Observe justice," seemingly a plea of childhood as Queen Mary peered philosophically at a fair end that was never to be.

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