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Research Coins: Affiliated Auction

Sale: Nomos 5, Lot: 55. Estimate CHF4000. 
Closing Date: Monday, 24 October 2011. 
Sold For CHF3200. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

France. Medal (Bronze, 71.3mm, 74 g 12), in honor of Jacques Boiceau (ca. 1560-1633), by Abraham Dupré (1604-1647), 1624. IACQVES BOICEAV SR DE LA BARRAVDERIE Bearded bust of Boiceau to right, wearing ruff, embroidered doublet and cloak; below bust, AB.DVPRE.F.1624. Rev. NATVS.HVMI. POST.OPVS.ASTRA.PETO (=born of the earth I gain the sky after labor) Silk worms crawling over landscape with silk moths hovering above; behind, in distance, town. Jones 72. Pollard 653 = Kress 572. . A very attractive contemporary cast with a lovely brown patina. Tiny contemporary piercing, otherwise, extremely fine.

From the collection of John R. Gaines, Morton & Eden, 21 April 2005, 31.

Jacques Boiceau, sieur de la Barrauderie, was a garden architect and was in charge of the royal gardens under Louis XIII. His abilities were such that he was ennobled and produced a major work on gardening that was published posthumously in 1638: it had an influence on Le Nôtre who designed the gardens at Vaux-le-Vicomte and Versailles. Boiceau was a friend of Guillaume Dupré (he was the godfather of Dupré’s son Jacques, born in 1603) and the commission for this medal, the first made by Abraham Dupré when he was only 20, must be due to that friendship. The reverse is very complexly symbolic: the worms begin life in mud and filth but through perseverance they soar on high; just like Boiceau who through his work in gardens became a respected and ennobled figure.