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Research Coins: Affiliated Auction

Sale: Nomos 5, Lot: 1. Estimate CHF850. 
Closing Date: Monday, 24 October 2011. 
Sold For CHF1600. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

Italy, Venetia. Portrait plaquette (Bronze, 59 x 41mm, 67 g), a very early or contemporary cut-out, one sided plaquette of Nicolaus Schlifer, by Giovanni Boldù, (1457). Bare headed and draped bust of Nicolaus Schlifer to left. Rev. Slightly concave and unfinished surface as cast, with three later screw holes for attachment. Hill, Corpus, 418. Kress 140 = NG 161 ( references to the complete medal). Hill, Corpus, p. 110, note to 418 (this piece cited). An attractive and interesting artifact, probably unique, with good details and a fine dark brown patina. Good very fine.

Ex Astarte VII, 11 October 2001, 107 and, almost certainly, from the Rosenheim Collection, Sotheby Wilkinson & Hodge, 30 April 1923, 41 (part).

Giovanni Boldù made the original portrait medal of Nicolaus Schlifer in 1457. He described the subject as a modest German musician (who must have been a personal friend) and showed him paired with a reverse of Apollo holding his lyre. Exactly who Schlifer was is unknown, but the medal itself forms part of a small series of portraits of people who must have been personal friends (and are mostly otherwise unknown): Pietro Bono of Parma (a poet), Filipoo Maserano (either a poet or a musician) and Filippo de’ Vadi of Pisa (a doctor and an official who worked with the House of Este).