Historical and Commemorative Medals
Collection of Benjamin Weiss


DASSIER, Jean: England, 1731, Bronze, 41 mm
Obv: Bust of Edward VI wearing a cloak lined with ermine, embroidered doublet, and hat with feather.   EDOUARD. VI. D.G. ANG. FR. ET. HIB. REX.
Rev: Tomb monument flanked by volutes decorated with festoons of roses. In the center is a square bas-relief showing the king as an infant Hercules strangling a dragon, symbolizing the papacy, in imitation of the fable of Hercules strangling the serpent.
Exergue:  NAT. 12 OCTOB. 1537. COR. 20. FEBR. 1547. M.6 IUL. 1553.
Ref: M.I. i, 62/20; Eimer 30/30; Thompson 29/21; Eisler I, 260/23;  Weiss BW612

Edward VI (1537-1553), King of England and Ireland (1547-1553), was the only legitimate son of Henry VIII. His mother Jane Seymour, Henry’s third wife, died 12 days after his birth. Henry had decreed that during Edward’s minority the government was to be run by a council of regency. In fact, he reigned under two regencies: Edward’s uncle, Edward Seymour, Duke of Somerset (1547-1549), who wielded almost supreme power as regent, and the Duke of Northumberland (1549-1553). A devout Protestant, Edward endorsed Archbishop Thomas Cramer’s revision of the Book of Common Prayer. Clever but frail, Edward died of tuberculosis at the age of sixteen years after willing the crown to Northumberland’s daughter-in–law, Lady Jane Gray, to exclude his catholic sister, Mary I (who, in fact, did succeed him). He did not marry and had no issue. (Taken, in part, from Thompson)