Coin bracelet – Coin ring – Coin watch – Coin pendant – Medal medallion

Coin bracelet

A type of rigid bracelet made of a gold hoop and having at the front a decorative ornament made of adjacent gold coins.

An example (one of a pair found in Egypt and attributed to AD 610-40, based on the dates of the coins) includes five coins of Constantinople.

Coin ring

A type of finger ring ornamented with a gold coin set on the bezel. Such rings were made in Rome during the latter years of the Empire, and often the coins depicted the head of an emperor.

Coin watch

A type of luxury pocket watch or wrist watch that is very thin and of which the watch case is, or is in the form of, a coin. Such pieces were fashionable from the early 19th century in France, examples being known that are set in a 100-franc gold coin.

Watches of this type are still being made today with gold coins of various countries.

Coin pendant

A type of pendant in the form of a circular band enclosing a coin. The band is usually decorated and has a suspensory ring or chains.

Such pendants were sometimes worn as an amulet, especially when the coin (e.g. a gold noble of Edward III or Edward IV) bore a motto believed to have amuletic significance. Some German examples of the 16th or 17th century enclose a coin bearing a portrait of a Bavarian or Bohemian duke; they were usually a gift to visiting dignitaries or-favoured retainers.

The German term is Gnadenpfennig.

coin bracelet coin ring coin watch medal medallion

Medal medallion

A medal, usually of cast gold, mounted in the form of a medalllion, sometimes with enamelled and jewelled mounts, and sometimes hung with pearls. Such pieces were often worn suspended from a chain.

They were the subject of gifts in Germany, in the 16th/17th centuries, as a mark of special favour from persons of royalty or nobility whose portrait was on the medal.

The medals were frequently made in more than one copy, e.g. three replicas, dated 1612, are known (in the British Museum, the Victoria & Albert Museum, and the Morgan Collection) of one such medallion depicting Maximilian, Archduke of Austria (1558-1620); the medals are set in a circular frame of pierced enamelled scrolls with four shields of arms and suspended by an escutcheon with the arms of Austria.

Such medallions are typically German but were adopted in Scandinavia. The German term is Gnadenpfennig.