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Sigismund III Vasa, Medal of the capture of Smolensk 1611 - old copy

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Lot description Show orginal version
Grade: UNC
Reference: Raczyński 74

An old copy of one of the most famous Polish medals issued in 1611 to commemorate the capture of Smolensk.

An item known in the original only from a gold piece found in the Imperial collection in Vienna.

The issue is described by Raczynski with the words:

Our numismatics does not possess a greater or perhaps a more beautiful medal than the one that Sigismund III, on account of the capture of Smolensk in 1611, had minted, or rather cast, and which we place here under the number 74. Contemporary historians have left us the details of this memorable siege, which we include here in abbreviated form.

The King stood with his army at Smolensk on September 20, 1609 and soon began the siege, but when the fire from Polish field cannons had little effect, King Sigismund decided to bring heavy cannons from Riga, Tykocin and Vilnius, which arrived a few months later; In the meantime Poles tried to get into the besieged city by all means; they laid mines, launched night assaults, crushed the city gates with firecrackers; but the Moscow garrison thwarted all their attempts. At that time Hetman Zolkiewski advised Sigismund, having squeezed Smolensk with the Zaporozhian army, to rush to the city of Moscow with a selection of Polish knights himself. The King did not like this advice, or more than once later regretted that he did not follow it.

In spite of the heavy cannons coming from Riga and Vilnius in 1611, when the Poles suffered no less fierce resistance from the besieged, King Sigismund decided to launch a general assault on the city.

Patinated bronze, diameter 128 mm, weight 576 g.

17 Auction
19 April, 18:00 CEST/Warsaw
Session 3
21 April, 10:00 CEST/Warsaw
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Rzeszowski Dom Aukcyjny

17 Auction
Friday, 19 April, 18:00 CEST/Warsaw
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Rzeszowski Dom Aukcyjny
Rzeszowski Dom Aukcyjny
ul. 3 Maja 13
35-030 Rzeszów