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    Description

    Landau. Siege Klippe of 4 Livres 4 Sols 1702 VF35 NGC, Landau besieged, KM9, Dav-2375. Issued under Comte de Melac. Semi-rectangular uniface planchet, featuring circular punch of Melac's coat-of-arms, the value above, and the city and date below; around, lis punches to detract clipping of the edges. Attractively toned and very rare.

    Many traditional references catalog this piece as Germany since its currently located within the boundaries of that country. However, it was actually issued under French authority during the War of the Spanish Succession. Under the command of General Ezéchiel du Mas, Comte de Mélac, the French stronghold at Landau held out for some four months, enduring constant artillery bombardments and suffering heavy losses. During the siege General Mélac needed specie to pay his troops. Since coinage was scarce, gold and silver items of his own personal possession we utilized for this purpose. Items such as silver cutlery and flatware were cut down to proper weight, stamped and repurposed as coinage. The coin offered here is actually made from a cut section of one of Mélac's own personal table settings, more specifically a silver plate. A good sized portion of the rim from the original plate is clear at 12 o' clock. The reverse of the coin shows some engraving, which is evidence of the plateware's pattern. Mélacs military tactics during the war gained him great notoriety and his name became synonymous with murder and arson, as in many cases he ordered his troops to burn German villages and farm fields. As lasting testimony to his cruelty, Mélac remains a somewhat common name given to dogs in the German Palatinate. After being besieged for some four months, Mélac finally surrendered and was allowed to withdraw with his garrison, leaving the Rhine never to return. He died less than two years later in retirement on May 4th 1704. 


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2016
    14th-19th Thursday-Tuesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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