Jacob Uyttenwael (1611-1648)
VZ POSSVNT QVÆ POSSE VIDENTVR 16 MARTY 1602
KZ QVO SALTAS INSEQVAR – NON SVFFICIT ORBIS
Material and weight
Gold | 63.40 grams
Medals are true works of art, and this is certainly the case for the medal 'The Spanish galleon St. Jacob' (1602) that we auctioned in 2017, during one of our Coins, Currency and Medals auctions in IJsselstein. This gold medal was sold for no less than 92,252 euros: a world record for a Dutch medal!
The record medal shows how the Spanish galleon St. Jacob is attacked by two ships from Zeeland. The front displays a battle on the high seas between these two ships from Zeeland and the Spanish galleon. On the back one can see a horse jumping over the globe, a symbol of Spanish dominance in both halves of the world. If you look carefully you can see that the horse is attacked by a Zeeland lion that jumps out of the water.
The medal is a beautiful example of craftsmanship in the Golden Age, when they were able to depict entire battles on a few square centimeters.
The images refer to a historical event. On March 16, 1602, two ships from Zeeland, returning from Sumatra, discovered the Spanish galleon Sao Jago near Saint Helena and attacked it. After a fierce battle, the Spaniards surrendered, giving the Zeelanders the valuable cargo worth 1,500,000 guilders.