Medals and coins

The Carrino Collection of medals is one of the world’s largest dedicated to Beethoven, with over 500 pieces relating to the composer, his life, works, homes and the places he frequented, not to mention his contemporaries, musicians, artists and patrons who had various contacts with him.

A MEDAL is a permanent monument to celebrate a person, commemorate an event, an anniversary or a special occasion, but it can also be a purely artistic object, in which case it is called a “plaque”. Described by F. Ceccarelli (Milan, 1988) as “an autonomous expression of art like a painting or a sculpture”, medals are celebratory, a historical document and a work of art all at the same time, and this is often conveyed through symbols, allegories and allusions. The world’s first portrait medal was produced in 1438 by the great Italian artist Antonio di Puccio, known as Pisanello, for the Byzantine Emperor John VIII Paleologus. Medals can be minted or cast. The main metals used are bronze for cast medals and copper, silver and gold for minted ones. 

A COIN is a means of payment issued and guaranteed solely by the State. Numismatics is the study of currency from all over the world and from throughout history, including the artistic design of coins.