Historical and Commemorative Medals
 Collection of Benjamin Weiss


ROETTIERS, Joseph / MOLART, Michel: France, 1684, Bronze, 73 mm
Obv: Bust of Louis XIV (r)    LVDOVICVS. MAGNVS. REX. CHRISTIANISS. (Louis the Great, Most Christian King)
Rev: The ambassador of Algiers throws himself at Louis' feet to ask pardon    CONFECTO. BELLO. PIRATICO. (The Pirate War Terminated)
Exergue:  AFRICA. SVPPLEX. M.DC.LXXXIV. (Africa Suppliant 1684)
Signed:  R / MOLART. F.
Ref: Weiss BW192;  The obverse is similar to the 41st effigy in Catalogue General, p.148. The reverse is similar to one by F. Cheron in Jones, Medals of the Sun King, #36, the Cheron piece being of superior design.

This medal celebrates the subjugation of the pirates of Algiers by the French fleet. A major military figure in the enterprise was Abraham Marquis Duquesne (1610-1688), a French naval officer, born at Dieppe in 1610. At one point in his career, Duquesne had to encounter the united fleets of Spain and Holland under the command of the celebrated Admiral de Ruyter. After several battles, in which the advantage was generally on the side of the French, a decisive engagement took place (1676), when the Dutch fleet was totally routed and de Ruyter mortally wounded. The greater part of the defeated fleet was afterwards burned and the French thus secured the undisputed command of the Mediterranean. For this important service Duquesne received a letter of thanks from Louis XIV, together with the title of marquis. For some years Duquesne was occupied in endeavors to suppress piracy in the Mediterranean. His last achievements were the bombardment of Algiers in order to effect the deliverance of the Christian captives.