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James II Official Silver Coronation Medal 1685

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1685, England. OFFICIAL CORONATION MEDAL OF JAMES II. By John Roettiers. Silver 35mm.

Obv: Laureate bust of James II, right. Leg: IACOBVS . II . D. G. ANG . SCO . FR . ET . HIB. REX. (James II by the grace of God king of England, Scotland, France and Ireland) R below the bust, the R is actually a monogram of J. R.

Rev: A hand holding a crown above a wreath on a cushion. Leg: A . MILITATI . AD . REGIAM.=From the military to the royal crown. Exergue: INAVGVRAT . 23. AP . 1685. Mintage of just 800.


Reverse the initials GHF crudely scratched in the field. At least the engraved details are unaffected and the medal is still very attractive. When the initials were scratched is not known, but it could have been during the 'Glorious Revolution' (obviously James was hated by many at that time) or 'yesterday'. Owing to the extremely high value of these medals now, I suspect an early date for the defacement.


This was the official medal distributed among the spectators at the coronation of James II on 23rd April, 1685. The dies are in the British Museum. Prior to his coronation, James had distinguished himself as a naval and military commander. The medal was executed by John Roettier, who was the eldest son of an Antwerp goldsmith. Roettier came to England soon after the Restoration and was appointed one of the engravers at the Mint and Chief Engraver on the death of Thomas Rawlins (1670). He held this position until 1697. Apart from the major pieces made by the Simons, Roettier's medals are the finest produced in England since the Restoration.

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