Sixtus IV, Pope 1471-1484

Muntoni 10; Berman 448, PCGS graded MS-64

Rome. SIXTVS PP QVARTVS, arms of Pope Sixtus IV within quadrilobe. Reverse: SANCTVS PETRVS ALMA ROMA, St. Peter fishing from a boat.

Francesco Della Rovere ascended the Throne of St. Peter as Pope Sixtus IV. He strengthened his position by granting possessions and offices to nephews and other family members, six of whom were created cardinals. He was also accused of making cardinals of youths suspected of being his lovers, but it is unclear how much truth lies in these accusations since they come from Protestant polemicists and Italian historians with connections to the rival noble house of Colonna. More certain is his sale of high offices to fill the state coffers. The obverse of this and the reverse of the following coin feature the oak tree arms of the Della Rovere (“of the Oak”) family.