Secessionist Medals

Secessionist Artists - WWI 1914 -1918 => Adolf Daumiller => Topic started by: Rabenauge on June 05, 2020, 03:09:28 AM

Title: Rule Britannia
Post by: Rabenauge on June 05, 2020, 03:09:28 AM

Adolf Daumiller.  1915. 

RVLE BRITANIA [sic] ALL / OVER THE WORLD / 1914 - 15.  Cast bronze, chocolate-brown patina, 47.8 mm, 61.8 g.  Vorzüglich (extremely fine).  Scarce.

Obverse: Head and neck profile stern-faced woman to left, three open-mouthed serpents emerging from hair to front, side and back; along left edge, two fish tail to tail; third fish head downward along right edge; artist's initials A. D. below neck of image. 

Reverse: Britannia as charioteer on ground-line at left, directing harnessed leonine monster with five human heads on serpent necks to right; three-line title inscription (Britannia misspelled) in exergue.

Cf: Schulman.  1916.  La Guerre Européenne, Catalogue LXV, p. 84: no. 819, illustrated (bronze example).

Cf: Frankenhuis, M.  (1919?)  Catalogue of Medals - Medalets and Plaques Relative to the World War 1914 - 1919, p. 171, no. 1438 (labeled as "Rule Britannia", i.e. spelling corrected).

Cf: Klose, Dietrich O. A.  2016.  Europas Verderben 1914 1918: Deutsche und österreichische Medaillen auf den Ersten Weltkrieg, pp. 113: no. 8.29 (iron example).

Cf: for another bronze example in the American Numismatic Society's collection.

Design derived from ancient Syracusan coins, e.g. decadrachm from the time of Dionysius I (405 - 367 BC).  The classical features of the nereid Arethusa on the ancient coin have been coarsened on the present medal to those of a Medusa-like Britannia, dolphins replaced by fish, and the racing quadriga with male charioteer on the reverse here becomes Britannia steering a polycephalous Britannic lion as her agent of world conquest.

Since Britain is assumed to be the charioteer, the heads of the monster likely represent (l - r) the other members of the Entente and Associated Powers in 1915: France, Russia, Italy, Japan, and perhaps Serbia or Belgium.