Coins of the Great Plague

Known as The Black Death this occured in
Europe between 1347 to 1351

click on the coin or painting images for more details


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Plague Taler, 1528

purchased from Karl Stephens, ca 2004.

Moses prayed to God, who told Moses, 'Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole; and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he seeth it, shall live.' [Numbers 21: 4-9].

This scene was 1st (or perhaps best) depicted in a panel painted by Michaelangelo 20 years previously {see below}. Netushan is also mentioned in 2 Kings 18:4, the Gospel of John 3:14-16 and was the subject of a famous sermon by Charles Spurgeon in 1857: "The Mysteries of the Brazen Serpent".

"Pest" Taler 1528, engraved by Ulrich (Utz) Gebhart and struck at the Joachimsthal mint. The metal was from Erzgebirge, the "Ore Mountains", now between the Czech Republic & Germany. .

Plague of 1528. This was a direct consequence of the sack of Rome in 1527 by mutinous troops of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor.

The wiki article on the 1527 Sack of Rome

The Bronze Serpent
Michaelangelo, 1508

Sistene Chapel, Vatican

Nehushtan (Hebrew) is the name given to the bronze or brass serpent on a pole. This was first described in the Book of Numbers & is also described in the Gospel of John.

This imagery was painted by Michaelangelo, in 1508, as a panel of the Sistene Chapel. Although the crucifixion of Christ was not depicted by Michaelangelo, he did paint the "Snake Tempting Eve" as another panel. Apparently snake related themes were very common in ancient and medieval times and there were snake cults during both eras.

More plague coinage coming soon.

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