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|Description||France. Second Empire. Napoleon III. 1852-1870.
The reverse legend clearly dates this issue prior to the Franco-Prussian War, since that conflict resulted in the downfall of Napoleon III. The Kaiser mentioned here is not the German emperor, but Napoleon himself. The IN MAINZ suggests the medallion to be of local manufacture. Inspired by his uncle's achievements, Napoleon III moved to reconstitute the French Empire in Europe. In the summer of 1866, the emperor began to press Prussan chancellor Bismark for the return of German territories which had been under French control prior to 1814 and which would help secure the western bank of the Rhine for France. Among these areas was the city of Mainz, which, since 1815, had become an important city for the German Confederation and gave the Germans a footing across the Rhine. Bismarck, however, rejected the demand, citing it as an offense to German nationalism. It is possible that this large gold medallion was struck at the time of the negotiations to present to pro-French German elites.
|Author||die: Ferdinand Korn (circa 1830 - ca. 1870)
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