Artist extraordinaire in metal
The beauty of Simon’s crown has been acclaimed ever since he struck it. To dramatize his case, he placed a tiny inscription in two rows of letters on its edge. The King, for a variety of reasons, did not get the message even though Simon’s coin was clearly the superior to the work of the Roettiers. Charles picked the Roettier design as the winner. Though he lost the contest, Simon did win lasting fame among numismatists. Simon's shows his unique style style and creativity with this his petition & signature for the King to see adding luster to the coin.
A genius, armed with a wonderful contemporary drawing from his friend the diarist and close friend of the king, Samuel Pepys.
This masterpiece is the creation of an audacious and creative engraver, Thomas Simon. Following the Restoration of the Monarchy Charles II ordered trials for a milled coinage from the newly appointed Dutch engravers, the Roettier brothers, at the Royal Mint. Simon, aggrieved that he had not been given the commission, was determined to win the King over and be chosen as the official designer with his clever concepts. Simon was the first engraver to bring the ‘frosted’ parts to a coin. Simon engraved the dies for this fabulously detailed Crown featuring an arresting depiction of Charles II’s bust on the obverse with “Simon” engraved just below the King’s clothed neckline. The spectacular details on the coinand the medallic appearance allowedSimon to showcase his skill. Simon’s artistry shown in his portrait of the King, Charles II, with such fine detail as the candle light shadows of the King's vein on the neck. The “Petition” of two hundred raised letters in two lines around the coin’s rim, which is only 3.5mm deep, demonstrated his technical skill.
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