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An Original Set of the Corpus Nummorum Italicorum

Currency:USD Category:Coins & Paper Money Start Price:500.00 USD Estimated At:750.00 - 750.00 USD
An Original Set of the Corpus Nummorum Italicorum
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Victor Emmanuel III, King of Italy. CORPUS NUMMORUM ITALICORUM. PRIMO TENTATIVO DI UN CATALOGO GENERALE DELLE MONETE MEDIEVALE E MODERNE CONIATE IN ITALIA O DA ITALIANI IN ALTRI PAESI. VOLUMES I-XIX. Rome, 1910-(1943). First editions. Nineteen volumes, complete [Vol. 20 was distributed in proof form but never formally published and is not present here]. Approximately 10,500 pages; approximately 650 plates of coins. Folio, matching maroon quarter leather and marbled boards, gilt. Entire set badly water-damaged, affecting both plates and text toward the lower half of pages. Bindings also damaged. A few volumes relatively unscathed. Mostly useable, but a damaged set. King Victor Emmanuel III (1869-1947), began collecting coins as a boy and first conceived the idea for a corpus of Italian coins in 1897 when he proposed it to the Italian Numismatic Society. The king freely admitted that coin collecting was the greatest passion of his life and his collection exceeded 100,000 coins near the end of his lifetime. Dating from the fall of the Roman Empire in the West to the Unification of Italy, it encompassed the issues of Italian mints both in Italy and abroad. Through his lifelong efforts and those of a series of talented numismatic secretaries, that great passion was recorded on paper: 11,144 pages of text and 679 pages of text, each measuring ten by thirteen inches in size. In sum, they comprise the most extensive and comprehensive work ever written on the coinage of a single country. Indeed, the immense importance of the coin collection is perhaps no less worthy of recognition than the twenty weighty tomes recording it. Six hundred copies of the first volume were printed and similar numbers of succeeding volumes were presumably issued. While the condition of this set is certainly regrettable, previous owners have found the plates usable and superior to those in the reprints. Clain-Stefanelli 10186*: “A basic reference on the Italian coinage from the Middle Ages up to 1900.” Grierson 160: “Un immense ouvrage descriptif, bâti autour de la collection du roi Victor Emmanuel.” Ex Herb Kreindler library.