start page Charles V TOUR :   Don Juan de Austria ➜

Philip II,   King of Spain 1556-1598
- son of Emperor Charles V (King Charles I of Spain)  -  founder of the Spanish line of Habsburg -
*1527 Valladolid, †1598 Escorial near Madrid. Philip II received from his father the following countries: the Duchy of Milan in 1540, the Kingdoms of Naples and Sicily in 1554 and in 1555/56 the Netherlands, the Franche-Comté and Spain with its colonies. In 1580 Philip also claimed and took over Portugal. He strove for Spanish world supremacy and fought for the counter-reformation. He was married four times: Maria of Portugal (*1526, †1545 following the birth of Don Carlos), Queen Mary Tudor of England (1554, †1558), Elizabeth of Valois, daughter of King Henri II of France (1559, †1568) and finally, in 1570, Anna of Austria, daughter of Emperor Maximilian II.
King Philip II fought successfully against France (1557-1559), against the Turks (Juan d'Austria's victory near Lepanto in 1571) and against Mediterranean pirates. However, his attempt to conquer England failed (destruction of the Armada in 1588, sea-battle of Cádiz in 1596), as did his efforts to subdue the revolting Netherlands (secession of the northern provinces). Philip's ongoing war efforts overstrained his financial and economic resources and eventually led to the decline of Spanish supremacy.
Philip II minted coins with his effigy in Milan, Naples, Sicily, Sardinia and in the Spanish Netherlands, while in Spain large coins only showed heraldic symbols, as in his father's time.

Up to 1556, before taking over Spain as successor to Emperor Charles V

Mezzo Ducato, n. d. (1554-6), Naples.     Ø 34 mm, 14,9 g.   Pannuti Riccio 3.
Obv.:   PHILIP·R·ANG·FR·NEAP·PRI·HISPA· "Philip, King of England, France, Naples, Prince of Spain"
crowned bust, to the left the monogram IBR (Juan Bautista Rabaschiero)

Rev.:   POSVIMVS·DEVM·ADIVTOREM·NOSTrum   "We have made God our helper"
crowned arms, half Spanish, half English (lions and fleur-de-lis interchanged).
Compare the English shilling 1554 with a similar reverse side.
Philip was King of Naples at this time and married to Mary Tudor, but he was not yet King of Spain. Later the 1/2-ducato carries the title "King of Aragón, Sicily and Jerusalem" and the arms of Jerusalem and Hungary traditionally used in Naples.

Mezzo Ducato n. d. (1554-6), Naples.     Ø 33 mm, 14,58 g.   Pannuti Riccio 5.
Obv.:  ·PHILIP·R·ANG·FR·NEAP·PR·HISP·  Sign. IBR for G. B. Ravaschiero.  -  Uncrowned bust right.
Rev.:   POPVLOR SECVRITATI   -   Oval coat of arms, as above.

Scudo d'oro n. d. (before 1556), Neapel.     Ø 22 mm, 3,32 g.   Pannuti Riccio 1; MIR 157.

Carlino n. d. (1554-6), Neapel.     Ø 23 mm, 3,1 g.   Pannuti Riccio 15.
Obv.:  PHILIP·REX·ANG·FR·NE·Princeps·Hispaniarum   -   crowned head right, mint mark R at the neck.
Rev.:  ·FID· / ·EI·DE· / ·FENSO· / ·R·   "Defender of the Faith"  -  4 lines of writing in a laurel wreath.

After 1556, the takeover of Spain as successor to Emperor Charles V

Spanish Netherlands

Philipsdaalder 1557, Antwerpen.     Ø 40 mm, 33,94 g.
Delm.12; Vanhoudt 253 AN (R1); Dav.8625.

Obv.:   PHilippuS·Dei·Gratia·HISPanae·ANGliae·Z(etc)·REX·DVX·BRABantiae 1557
"Philip by the grace of God King of Spain, England etc., Duke of Brabant"
Rev.:   ·DOMINVS·MIC - HI·ADIVTOR·(mm. hand)·
crowned arms between fire irons with flames, St.Andrew's Cross in the background,
underneath a flintstone with flames and the Golden Fleece     hand, Antwerp's mintmark
Antwerp: In the 14th century Antwerp prospered under Burgundian dominion. Wealth declined for more than two centuries because of the inquisition (since 1567), Spanish looting (1576) and Alexander Farnese's siege and conquest of the city in 1585. The coat of the city "Hand werpen" ("throw hand") shows the hands of a giant, chopped off and thrown into the river Schelde.

Double Schautaler, n. d. (1586/98), Brabant.     Ø 46 mm, 61,64 g.   Delmonte 88; Dav.-.
"Philip by the grace of God King of Spain, Duke of Brabant"   -   crowned bust in armor.
Rev.:   ·DOMINVS·MI - HI·ADIVTOR·   "The Lord is my helper"
arms, upper part :   Castile & León | Aragón & Sicily   in between : Granada (pomegranate)
upper center :   Portugal
lower part :   Austria (band) & Old-Burgundy (oblique stripes) | New-Burgundy (fleur-de-lis) & Brabant (lion)
lower center :   Flanders | Tirol
(lion | eagle)

Duchy of Milan

Doppia (double ducat) 1578, Milan.     Ø 26 mm, 6,56 g.   Crippa 4/A; Friedb.716.
Obv.:   PHILIppus·REX·HISPANIarum·ETC   "Philip King of Spain, etc."
crowned head, date below.

Rev.:   MEDIOL - ANI·DVX     "Duke of Milan"
arms of Milan under a crown with a palm and a laurel branch.

Scudo d'oro n. d., Milan.     Ø 23 mm, 3,07 g.   Crippa 8; MIR 305; Friedb.718.

Scudo 1582, Milan.     Ø 40-38 mm.   Crippa 13/B­1; Dav.8309.
Obv.:  PHILIPPVS·REX·HISPANIARVM  -  bare-headed bust right, Fleece order, date 15-82.
Rev.:   ·DVX·MEDIO· - ·LANI· ET·C·  -  crowned cartouche with coat of arms of Milan.

1/2 Scudo n. d., Milan.     Ø 33 mm, ca.17 g.   Crippa 21; Toffanin 311/2.
Obv.:   PHILIPPVS·REX·HISPANIARVM  -  crowned bust left, ruff, draped armour.
Rev.:   DVX·MED - IOLANI  -  crowned coat of arms, center: arms of Milan. gekrönte Wappen, Herzwappen Mailand.

1/2 Scudo 1562, Milan.     Ø 34 mm, 17,30 g.   CNI V p.246 n.11; Crippa 19; Coll.Gnecchi 2977.
Obv.:   PHI·REX·BELLO·PACE QINSIGNIS   "Philip, king awarded peace (and war)"
Armored bust left, helmet with lion's head.

Rev.:   SANC - AMBRO·MLM·   -   St. Ambrose with a scourge riding right, in the section date 1562.

Kingdoms of Naples and Sicily

Scudo d'oro 1582, Naples.     Ø 24,5 mm, 3,34 g.   CNI 1163; P/R.5; MIR 168/3.
Obv.:   ·PHILIPP·REX·ARA·VTRI·   -   Bust left, mint mark at the neck [GR] / [VP], below 1582.
Rev.:   ·SICILIAE· - ·HIERVSA·   -   Coat of arms and golden fleece.

Mezzo Carlino n. d., Naples.     Ø 20 mm, 1,36 g.   CNI XX/780(p.89); Magliocca 83/1.
Obv.:  +PHILIPP·REX·ARA·VTRI  -  crowned bust right, mark GR (ligatured) and VP (ligatured).
Two flints and two flames set in a cross around a spherical fire iron.
A ball at each end of the flints and a small flame at the ends of the flames.

Mint Messina in Sicily

Scudo da 10 Tari 1556, Messina.     Ø 37 mm, 26,11 g.   Spahr 147; Dav.8322.
Bust left with beard and moustache, below sign ·C·G· (Nicolò Antonio Gotho, mintmaster).
Rev.:   PVBLIC / AE•COMM / ODITAT / I   publicae commodidati = "for the public convenience"
around floral wreath.

4 Tari 1562 T-P, Messina.     Ø 32 mm.   MIR 317/7.
Obv.:   PHILIPP - VS⨯D⨯G  -  crowned bust right.
Rev.:   +⨯REX⨯SICILLIA· I56Z⨯  -  crowned eagle between T - P.

3 Tari 1562 T-P, Messina.     Ø 28, 8,63 g.   Spahr 68-71.
Obv.:   PHILIPP - VS⨯D⨯G⨯  -  Bust to the lefts.
Rev.:   ✠REX⨯SICILIAE⨯SICILIAE⨯IS6Z⨯   [double strike at 11 h]
Floral cross, in between T - P.

Scudo 1572 P-P, Messina.     Ø 38 mm, 26,44 g.   Spahr 166; MIR 312/3; Dav.8323.
Obv.:   PHILIPPVS·D·G·REX·SI... (?)  -  armoured bust to the right.
Rev.:   PVBLI / CAE•COM / MODITA / TI  -  Floral wreath.

Kingdoms of Sardinia

10 Reali n. d., Cagliari, Sardinia.     Ø 41 mm, 28,56 g.   Varesi 39; Dav.8365.
Obv.:   PHILIP·R·ARA·ET·SARDINIE·  -  crowed bust, mintmark C / X - A.
Rev.:   ⁕INIMICOS:EIVS·INDVAM·CONFVSIONE  -  Cloverleaf cross in quatrefoil.

10 Reali n. d., Cagliari, Sardinia.     Ø 41 mm, 28,47 g.   Varesi 40; Dav.8366.
Obv.:   +PHILIPPVS·:REX·ARAGONVM·ET·SARDINIÆ   crowned bust, marks C / X – A.
"His enemies I shall clothe with shame" (so about David in Psalm 132, 18 and here about the king).
This denomination of 10 reali is the first large silver coinage in Sardinia.
It looks similar to the 1 Reale and the 2 and 3 Reali minted by Charles V.

Duchy of Burgundy

Carolus 1562, Dole.     Billon, Ø 18 mm, 1,05 g.   P.A. 5285.
Obv.:   PHilipuS·Dei·Gratia·Rex·HISPaniae·COMes·BVRGundiae   -   crowned bust left.
Rev.:  MONeta·COMITAtus·BVRGUNDIE  -  Coat of arms of the County of Burgundy, date 156Z.

Demi Carolus 1561, Dole.     Billon, Ø 16 mm, 0,79 g.   .
Obv.:   ¤PHS·D·G·R·HISP·CO·BVR  - crowned bust left.
Rev.:   M·C - BVR - GVN - I56I  - Coat of arms of the County of Burgundy on long cross.

Kingdom of Spain

4 reales 1594, Valencia.     Ø ca.30 mm, 10,12 g.   Cal.434; Cru.C.G. 4261a.

1 Real 1598, Barcelona.     Ø 20 mm, 3,29 g.   Cal.608.
Philip's recognizable profile appears in Spain for the first time in 1589 and 1595 on a coin minted in Barcelona.

Philips four marriages
Philip's first wife Maria of Portugal died in 1545 after the birth of Don Carlos. On the proposal of Charles V, Philip married Queen Mary Tudor in 1554, who died childless in 1558. On the occasion of peace with King Henri II of France, the marriage with Henri's daughter Elizabeth of Valois came about, but she died after exhausting births of daughters only. At long last, the fourth wife, his niece Anna of Austria, daughter of Philip's sister Mary, gave birth to the eagerly awaited successor, Philip III of Spain.

Philip and Queen Mary Tudor (1516-1558)

shilling 1554.     Ø 30 mm, 5,84 g.   North 1967; Seaby 2500.
Obv.:   Busts of Philip II and Mary facing each other, a crown divides the date on top.
Rev.:   Crowned arms (half Spanish, half English), above X - II (worth 12 pence)
POSVIMVS·DEVM·ADIVTOREM·NOSTRVM     "We have made God our helper"

Cast bronze medal 1555, by Jacopo Nizzola da Trezzo.    Ø 66,83 mm, 89,41 g.
Armand I, p.241, No.2/No.3; Börner 774.

Obv.:   PHILIPPVS·REX·PRINC·HISP·ÆTatis·Suae·AN·XXVIII  "... at the age of 28 years"
Half-length armoured bust of Philip right, signature and 1555 at the truncation.

Half-length bust of Mary to the left, elaborately dressed.

Comparer a bronze medal with the same obverse but different reverse.
Ø 69 mm.   Armand I, 241 2; Attwood 85; van Loon I,4; Bargello 723 (silver, 68mm)
Rev.: IAM. ILLVSTRABIT. OMNIA   "Now he will illuminate all things"
Apollo in four-horse chariot traversing the sky; below, a coastal scene with rocky outcrop, a harbour,
castle and blasted tree from which a new shoot is growing.

[morton&eden, London: auct.12 no.12 (4.2005) estimate 3000 GBP]

Cast silver medal c. 1555-58   by Jacques Jonghelinck after Jacopo da Trezzo.
Ø 35 mm, 35,08 g.     Attwood p.89, fig.26; Smolderen p.421, F8.
Obv.:   ·PHILIP·D·G· - HISP·REX·Z·
Bare-headed bust of Philip II to the right, with high collar, order of the Golden Fleece and cuirass.
Bust of Mary to the left, elaborately dressed with cap, diadem, kerchief, and a jewelled turtleneck gown.

Philip and Elisabeth (Isabella) of Valois
Elisabeth of Valois was originally intended for Prince Don Carlos. In connection with the Peace of Cateau-Cambrésis in 1559 (see below) she married Philip II.

Bronze medal n. d. (1559), model by Gianpaolo Poggini.    Ø 39 mm.   Armand I p.239 no.7.
Obv.:   ·PHILIPPVS·II·HISPAN·ET·NOVI·ORBIS OCCIDVI REX·   -   effigy of Philip to the left.
Rev.:   ·ISABELLA REGINA PHILIPPI·II·HISPAN·REGIS·   -   effigy of Isabella to the right.
Signature on both sides under the busts: ·I·PAVL·POG·F·

Philip and Anna of Austria (1549-1580)

Silver medal 1570, model by Jacques Jonghelinck.     Ø 39 mm, 21,45 g.
on Philip's marriage to his fourth wife, Anne of Austria.
Smolderen 74; van Loon I p.131,1; Armand I p.240 no.13.

Bare-headed bust of Philip II to the left, with high collar.
Draped bust of Anna to the right, with high collar and necklace. Truncation on the shoulder: ÆT·ZI
Compare the medal on Anna alone.

Philip's son Infante Don Carlos

Don Carlos (1545-68), son of Philip II and Maria of Portugal, was mentally retarded and physically handicapped because of frequent intermarriages of his ancestors. After an attempt to escape to the Netherlands, he was imprisoned and died in prison.

Cast silver medal n. d. (1568), model by Pompeo Leoni.     Ø 66 mm.
Attwood 118; Armand I p.249 no.3; here the piece from Teylers Museum: Obj. TMNK 198 .

Obv.:   CAROLVS P·F·HISP·PRINCEPS ÆT AN·XII·   -   Bareheaded bust to the left, in armor and with command staff in the right hand. Signature on the arm section: F.POMP.(1557)
Rev.:   CONSOCIATIO RERVM DOMINA   "Union, mistress of things"
A draped figure of Union, with three branches in her right hand and a crown in her left,
walks over war trophies at her feet.
Compare the medal by Jacopo da Trezzo dedicated to Charles' V daughter Maria with a similar obvers.

Oval uniface medal (1559), model by Pompeo Leoni.    39,7 x 33,6 mm.
CAROLVS PHI F ET S ANN XIIII   -   bust left, aged 14, in armour and mantle.
This forms the reverse of a medal depicting Philip II on the obverse (as Toderi/Vannel 125).

on Philip's accession to the Spanish throne in 1557

Silver medal 1557, model by Gianpaolo Poggini.    42,9 mm; 32,55 g.
Börner 684; Armand I p.238 n.1; v. Loon I p.8/9 n.2 (there with date 1555).

Obv.:   ·PHILIPPVS·Dei·Gratia·ET·CARoli·V·AVGusti·PATris·BENIGNITate·HISPaniarum·REX·
armored bust to the left, below date 1557 and signature ·I·PAUL·POG·F·.
Rev.:   ·VT QVIESCAT· - ·ATLAS·   "Rest on this Atlas"
Atlas supporting the Celestial Globe with stars and zodiac signs.
Compare with the statue Farnese Atlas at the National Archaeological Museum of Naples.
Giampaolo Poggini (*1518), goldsmith, die and medal cutter, is the elder brother of Domenico Poggini and his coworker at the court of Cosimo I Medici. He worked for the court of Philipp II of Spain, first in Brussels (1555-1559) and from 1559 to his death in 1582 in Madrid.

Peace of Cateau-Cambrésis 1559
between Philip II, Henri II of France and Elisabeth I of England:
England gives up Calais, France gives up Italy, Spain gives up Metz, Toul and Verdun,
Savoy is restituted, Duke Emanuel Philibert of Savoy marries a sister of Henri II,
Philipp II marries Elisabeth of Valois (see above), daughter of King Henri II.

Cast bronze medal 1559, model by Gianpaolo Poggini.     Ø 37,5 mm.
Attwood 1082; Betts 3 var.; Börner 685; Pax in Nummis 13; v. Loon I, p.28; Armand I p.238 no.5
On the peace of Cateau-Cambrésis 1559

"Philipp II., Kinf of Spain and the New western World"   At the arm section: I.PAVL.POG.F.
Rev.:   PACE·TERRA·MARIQue COMPOSITA / MDLIX   "Peace to land and water"
Pax stands to the right with a cornucopia in his left arm and sets fire to weapons and other war equipment with a torch, the Janus temple closed in the background.

Spain comes into possession of the East Indies

Gilded silver medal n. d., model by Gianpaolo Poggini (1518-82).     Ø 39 mm.
Scher 58; Attwood 1083; Armand I,p.239,no.10; here the piece from Teylers Museum: Obj.TMNK 255 .

"Philip II, king of the Spains and of the New World in the West"
Rev.:   RELIQVVM DATVRA / INDIA   "She will provide the rest / India"
A female figure in cuirass holds a globe in both hands and moves to the left towards three Spanish sailing ships. To the right, a group of figures from the New World follow her. They are accompanied by a llama carrying silver ingots. The northern hemisphere has lines of latitude and longitude, the southern hemisphere is left blank.
In 1562, the medallist Giampaolo Poggini wrote to Cosimo de Medici giving interesting information on this medal. According to the artist, he discussed and elaborated the details of the medal with his patron Gonzalo Perez. The letter states that Philipp's portrait was made specifically for the "India" medal. The woman on the reverse carrying half the globe as offering represents India. Poggini was able to copy the lama from a live animal in Madrid and the native women's clothes from samples from Peru. The legends on the medal were the result of the patron's consultations with scholars at the Spanish court.   [Scher, p.166]
upgraded 6.2018 and 5.2022.
Ref. about medals
• Gerard van Loon :  Beschryving der Nederlandsche Historipenningen.   1st part (Charles V - Philip II),
    The Hague 1723   online available.

• Alfred Armand :  Les Médailleurs Italiens des quinzième et seizième siècles.  3 vol., Paris 1883-87   online available.
• Philip Attwood :  Italian Medals c.1530-1600 in British Public Collections.   840 p., London 2003.
• Lore Börner :  Die italienischen Medaillen der Renaissance und des Barock (1450-1750).   Berlin 1997.
• Stephen K. Scher [Ed.] :  The Currency of Fame: Portrait Medals of the Renaissance.   NY 1994.

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