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Research Coins: Affiliated Auction

Sale: Nomos 1, Lot: 190. Estimate CHF40000. 
Closing Date: Tuesday, 5 May 2009. 
Sold For CHF41000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

GERMANY, Bayern. Albrecht V. 1550-1579. Ducat (Gold, 3.48 g 3), undated. ALBERT9.COM.PA.R.BAVA.DV. Crowned and bearded bust of Albrecht V to left, wearing elaborate robes and order of the Golden Fleece Rev. .SI.DE9.NOIS QVI.CON.NOS Crowned arms within Order of the Golden Fleece. Fr. 183. Very rare. Some minor marks, otherwise, about extremely fine.

Albrecht V was a champion of the German Counter-Reformation, apparently because he believed that Catholicism was vital for the continued good fortune of the Wittelsbach family as rulers of Bavaria - his marriage to Anna von Habsburg, the daughter of the Emperor Ferdinand I, had also placed Bavaria firmly on the side of Austria. In addition to his religious activities he was, however, a passionate collector and patron of the arts, especially, in fact, of antiquities. His many purchases laid the foundation of the great coin collection now in the Munich Cabinet. Unfortunately, his many and constant acquisitions (including 2480 coins and medals from a single major Venetian collection) well-nigh bankrupted the state, and this may be one reason why his gold coinage is so rare today. The superb quality of the portrait that appears on this coin must reflect the Duke’s personal interest in the coin’s design.