Louis XII, 1498

Duplessy 648; Friedberg 324, PCGS graded MS-62

It was with more than a little irony that the Duke of Orleans, Louis XII, succeeded Charles VIII in 1498 since he had actually fought against the king and the centralization of the monarchy during the uprising known as the Mad War (1485-1488). Refreshingly, as king, Louis XII did not give up his former principles and abandoned the drive of previous monarchs towards absolutism at the expense of the traditional rights of the nobility. Indeed, he was not only a friend of the nobles, but also of the lower classes through his reduction of the taille tax, his legal reforms, and the general promotion of peaceful conditions within the kingdom. In response to this decidedly un-tyrannical behavior, in 1506 the Estates-General of Tours proclaimed him le Père du Peuple (“the Father of the People”). Nevertheless, he was somewhat less welcomed in Italy, where he continued the expansionist policies of his predecessors, seizing Milan in 1500 and Naples in 1501.

Bayonne. 25 April 1498. (crowned lis) LVDOVICVS DEI GRACIA FRANCORV REX (anchor), crowned arms of France; sun above. Reverse: (crowned lis) XPS VINCIT XPS REGNAT ET IMPERAT (anchor), cross fleurdelisée.

Ex Maison Palombo (20 October 2018), 312