Marcellus II, Pope 1555

Muntoni 2; Berman 1032, PCGS graded MS-62

Rome. MARCELLVS II PONT MAX, canopy and crossed keys over shield. Reverse: S PETRVS ALMA ROMA, St. Peter standing facing, holding keys and Gospels.

Pope Marcellus II was the last of the few popes to retain his baptismal name upon ascending the Throne of St. Peter. Although he appears to have had plans to reform in the Church and to enforce peace between the kings of France and Spain, Marcellus II suffered from a very weak constitution. He was exhausted by the rigors of the conclave that elected him and by Holy Week solemnities that followed on its heels. At last, after reigning only 22 days, on the night of April 29, 1555, Marcellus II suffered a stroke and died the next day.