Copy in two halves of a medal of the Byzantine Emperor John VIII Palaeologus commemorating his attendance at the Council of the two Churches at Ferrara (Florence) at which he sought the help of the West against the Turks. The original medal was made between 29 Feb 1438 and 10 Jan 1439 by Pisanello. This Electrotype copy made circa 1881 by Robert Ready. The original medal was acquired by the British Museum as part of the collection of King George III in 1825 (Reg. G3, NapM.9) It was exhibited in the King's Gallery in 1881 and is No. 7 in the catalogue of that exhibition. It is thought that this electrotype was produced in association with that exhibition and publication and acquired by the National Gallery of Victoria where it was displayed.

Obverse Description

Bust of John VIII Palaeologus facing right, with trim beard and moustache, wearing hat with tall crown and large upturned brim, pointed in front, vest and cloak with falling collar, hair in long curls; around, legend in Greek (John, King and Emperor of the Romans Palaeologus)

Reverse Description

The Emperor on a horse advancing right, wearing hat; raising folded hands as he passes wayside cross, quiver attached to his right side and bow at his left; at left, a page on horseback seen from behind; in background, rocks; around above in two lines, · OPVS · PISANI · PICTORIS; around below, legend in Greek

Edge Description


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