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City of Bologna       Imperial City of Augsburg       City of Hildesheim

City of Bologna in 1530
As a result of internal quarrels in the city, the Papal States were able to annex Bologna in 1506. They operated a mint in Bologna ever since. It is occasionally claimed that the city also minted in her own rights in 1530. However, it is much more likely that this refers to coins of emperor Charles V.

Charles V in Bologna   (November 1529 - March 1530)
Charles V coronation in Bologna called for extensive and expensive preparation. After all, he was accompanied not only by many nobles but also by 8000 soldiers. When he solemnly entered the city on November 4, he had coins valuing 5000 ducats distributed among the people, and he presented the Medici-pope Clemens VII with gold and silver coins valuing 1000 ducats during the greeting ceremony. Quite possibly, the gold coin shown here belonged to Charles's "present".
Numerous issues had to be negotiated before the coronation could take place: Charles committed himself to support the papal campaign to regain Florence for the Medici, he accepted the future duke Alessandro Medici as fiancť of his daughter Margareta, and he agreed to re-institute Francesco II Sforza as duke in Milan. When negotiations were done, the dukes of Savoy, Mantua and Ferrara acknowledged Charles's sovereignty. He was now sovereign throughout Italy with the exception of the Papal States and the Republic of Venice.
On 22 February 1530, the pope crowned Charles with the Iron Crown of Lombardy. After a day's rest, the emperor's coronation followed on 24 February, Charles's 30th birthday, under the eyes of representatives from all over the world. Celebrations after the ceremony included a pageant, banquets and a festival for the crowds. It proved to be the last time that an emperor was crowned by the pope.

Apart form the huge number of coins Charles had spent on entering the city, his expenses were enormous. As Charles's need for money was to be expected, the city council of Bologna had granted him mintage of coins valuing 3000 ducats on February 11, 1530. There were no restrictions as to the details of the mintage. Chroniclers report that gold and silver coins were thrown to the crowds along the whole length of the procession. These coins showed Charles's effigy together with the columns of Hercules and were initially called "Imperiale d'oro" and "Imperiale d'argento".

A drawing from the time showing how coins were thrown among the people has survived in Antwerp.


Reale 1530, Bologna.     ō 22,3 mm, 3,12 g.   CNI X p.84 n.4; Muntoni 5; Chimenti 299.
CAROLVS ◦ V ◦ IMPERATOR   -   design like next coin.


Mezzo ducato d'oro 1530, Bologna.     ō 18 mm, 1,72 g.   Muntoni 2; Friedberg 120a.
Obv.:   CAROLVS ◦ V ◦ IMPERATOR   crowed head to the left
Rev.:   Date in between the columns of Hercules, surrounded by laurel.
Both sides refer to the emperor. There is no hint to Bologna or to her sovereign, the pope, as these coins were minted by a foreign ruler on papal territory.
The "Imperiale" are extremely rare and little was known as to their weights. However, it now seems clear that Charles's Imperiales belong to the Spanish monetary system. There were four nominales: ducates and half ducates in gold, and 3-Reali and 1-Reale in silver. Ducates were hardly intended for the people and not issued in large numbers, so there is only one specimen known today.

The ducat (ō 23 mm, 3,5 g) and the Reale (ō 22 mm, 3,1 g) are of similar design,
but the 3-Reali below differs somewhat.


3 Reali d'argento 1530, Bologna.     ō 28 mm, 9,60 g.   CNI X, p.84, n.3; Muntoni 3.
similar to the coin above except for:   bust instead of head  //  date around the pillars, not between.



Gold medal in the weight of 2 ducats.    ō ca.22 mm, 6,89 g.   Unicum ?
Cast on the occasion of the coronation ?
Crowned bust   //   personification of justice holding beam scales.


Ref. :
• Mario Traina: La monete battute a Bologna da Carlo V nel 1530. Bollettino del Circolo Numismatico
    Napoletano, Vol.57 (1972-75), pp.35-47
• Claire van Nerom: Monnaies frappťes ŗ Bologne par Charles Quint en 1530. RBN 146 (2000) 139-154 & pl.2
• F. Muntoni: Le moneta dei papi e degli stati pontifici. Roma 1972-4, Vol.4, pp.206-7 & pl.216
• Michele Chimienti,  Monete della zecca di Bologna, 2009
• M & M, Basel:  auction 50 (27.2-1.3.1975), Lots 662 & 663 (Mezo ducato d'or & Reale d'argento)
• Corpus Nummorum Italicorum (CNI), vol.X  -  Indice vol. X
• S. Di Virgilio,  La zecca di Bologna. VI: 1503-1534. Bollettino di numismatica: Coll. di Vittorio Emanuele
    III - Materiali 20. Roma, 2014


From Bologna to Augsburg: Charles stayed several months in Bologna and then left for the diet in Augsburg. On the way, he visited Mantua, where he raised Federico II Gonzaga to be Duke, then Trento, where he was a guest of Bernhard von Cles. For the first time he came to Austria, where in Innsbruck a family reunion with brother Ferdinand and sister Maria took place. In Innsbruck died Charles Chancellor Mercurino Gattinara. The emperor arrived in Augsburg in June 1530.

Imperial City of Augsburg
From 1500 on, a number of diets took place in Augsburg.
The city originated in a Roman camp on the river Lech Augusta Vindelicum and held a bishopry since 740. It began to assert its rights against the bishop since 1156. The city's sovereignty was continually threatened by Bavaria until emperor Ludwig IV., the Bavarian, confirmed her imperial status comprehensively and conclusively in 1316.
The city boomed in the 15th century because families such as the Fuggers and Welsers initiated foreign trade and turned Augsburg into one of Europe's most important financial places. Emperor Maximilian travelled so frequently to his bankers in Augsburg that a gate was broken into the city walls for his personal use. King Francis I mockingly called him the 'Mayor of Augsburg'.
Initially, only the the bishop held the mint right in Augsburg, but in 1521 Charles V also issued a grant to the imperial city.


Gulden, 1527, Augsburg.     ō 21 mm, 3,44 g.   khm MK 25837; FŲrschner 114; Schulten 58
Obv.:   +AVGVSTA§VINDELICORVM  -  date above the city's shield with a "Pyr"
Rev.:   ∑CAROLI∑AVG∑V∑MVNVS+IMP∑CAES  -  breast portrait of the emperor with big bow crown
Augsburg's coat of arms: The pine tree cone (called "Pyr") on a capital with a small angel's head is an antique symbol of fertility and modelled on Roman ensigns. The Pyr had become traditional before heraldic patents came into use so that such a patent was never issued for Augsburg.



10 kreuzer 1530.     ō 28 mm, 5,6 g.   Forster 17; FŲrschner 203; Schulten 60
Obv.:   CIvita∑AVGVSTA (crown) VINDELICORum     city's shield and crowned double eagle
Rev.:   CAROLus∑AVGustus∑V∑ 1530 + IMPerator.CAE - Sar     half-length picture of the emperor
This coin was minted with interruptions from 1527 to 1533.

These two mintages from Augsburg are the only ones that show Charles V. His effigy is quite remarkable since other important imperial cities such as Cologne, Nuremberg and Regensburg did not use it at all. It is usually the small imperial cities that stress their sovereignty with the use of the emperor's effigy on their coins - they were more dependant on his protection.

Augsburg hosted three important diets during the reign of Charles V.
1530, after the coronation:
The Lutherans drew up the "Augsburg Confession", to which the traditionalists responded with the "Confutatio". A schism seemed inevitable. In 1531, protestant nobles had united in the Schmalkalden League, and Augsburg joined them in 1536.
1547/8, after the defeat of the Schmalkalden League:
Charles dictated an interim solution to the protestants after the "steel-clad" diet, so called because of the presence of numerous imperial soldiers.
1555, after a conspiracy led by Maurice of Saxony:
King Ferdinand was authorized to negotiate the "Augsburg Treaty of Religion". Henceforth, the sovereign of a country could determine wether his subjects were to be Catholics or Lutherans. Clerical estates remained Catholic, and imperial cities could allow parity. The emperor was disappointed but had to accept the outcome of the negotiations. Augsburg decided on parity for both faiths.

City of Hildesheim
Charles V granted Hildesheim city rights in 1528. On this occasion, the coat of arms (quartered colours red and gold) was supplemented with the crowned imperial eagle, and the city's mint right was confirmed. The city made use of the mint right until 1772.


4 Dukaten 1528, (minted 1622/30).     ō 46 mm, 15,27 g.
Buck/Bahrfeldt 580; Schulten 1269; Friedb.1311.
In remembrance of the supplementing of the coat of arms in 1528 by emperor Charles V.

Obv.:   INSIGnia∑A∑CAR∑V∑ROM:IMP - HILDesiae∑AnnO 1528 COLLATA∑
"Coat of arms granted to Hildesheim by Charles V in 1528"
the new coat of arms, helmet above, and the virgin with rosary

Rev.:   §CAROLVS∑V∑ROM∑IMP∑Quondam∑FELICISSimus∑ET∑TRIVMPhator∑AVGVstus
"Charles ... once the happiest and the winner"
effigy of emperor Charles V looking right, with hat and order of the Golden Fleece
Every citizen as well as the city herself could order a private mintage with the mintmaster. This is how a number of gold commemoratives orginated. They were of differing weights, depending on the amount of gold which the customer had made available. These pieces were used as presents for important visitors of the town or as private christening presents.

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