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Napoleon as President?
December 19, 2008

Italian Republic - Napoleon Bonaparte President

The Cisalpine Republic was changed into the Italian Republic in 1802 under the rule of Napoleon Bonaparte. From 1802 until 1805 the Italian Republic struck three coin types in gold and an off-metal or two. These were produced as patterns in preparation for regular coinage issues.

But in 1805, Napoleon assumed the title Emperor of the French and the Italian Republic became the Kingdom of Italy, making the planned Napoleon Presidental coin issues obsolete.

Today these pieces are extemely rare with very few ever coming up for sale in the coin market. So the present offering in the January 5, 2009, Numismatik Lanz Munchen and Numismatica Bernardi Trieste Auction 145 will be a very special event.

Lot 209 in the sale will offer the gold Doppia Anno II, formerly from the Guia Collection sold by Bowers & Merena in 1988, where it realized about $77,000. It's pre-auction estimate this time is about 150,000 Euro.

The Guia Collection held an amazing three types from the Italian Republic; a Mezza Doppia with wreath reverse, a Doppia with wreath reverse and the present Doppia with snake or serpent reverse. The Guia Collection auction offered a great number of Italian coin rarities, as did several auctions in 1988 and 1989. Guia and many other 1988-1989 catalogs are essential to any good Italian coinage reference library.

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About the Author
Tom Michael has been Krause Publications primary market analyst on more than 80 world and United States coin catalogs produced over the last 20 years. He came to KP in 1987 with a bachelor of arts degree in history, a master of arts degree in economics and a history of coin collecting stretching back to the 1960s. He began collecting world coins as a child by asking friends and relatives to bring coins back from overseas trips, visiting flea markets and having his mother watch for foreign coins in her register at the local grocery store. Today he works with a dedicated base of over 200 contributors to provide accurate market values for the five-volume Standard Catalog of World Coins series, as well as many specialty catalogs, including Coins & Currency of the Middle East and the fifth edition of Unusual World Coins.

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