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Auction: 23006 - The Official COINEX Auction at Spink
Lot: 396

(x) Italian States, Venice, Giovanni Cornel, Doge CXI (1709-1722), Leone 'per il Levante', IOAN CORNEL DVX - S.M. VENET, Doge kneeling before Saint Mark, A.M (for Alvise Minotto or Anzolo Malimpiero) in exergue, rev. FIDES. ET. VICTORIA, winged Lion of Saint Mark standing, holding cross and palm branch, 26.93g, 11h (CNI 77; Dav. 1534; KM 496; Paolucci 42), good very fine, extremely rare

The silver Leone was struck specifically for the Venetian trade with Constantinople and the Muslim Levant which flourished, despite Papal bans, for centuries. While examples of this trade coin frequently appear, they are nearly always those of Giovanni II Corner's predecessors, particularly Doge Silvestro Valier (1694-1700) and examples from the reign of Giovanni II Corner are extremely rare. The trade was never as important to the Mamluk and Ottoman economies as it was for Venice, and it declined notably in the 17th Century. Under Giovanni II Corner, Venice waged an unsuccessful war against the Ottomans and as a result lost its last few possessions in the Morea, and it is significent that this trade coinage was discontinued during his reign.

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