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Luigi Manfredini
Biographical information

Flag of Italy Italy


1771, Bologna


1840, Milan

Occupational information
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Luigi Manfredini was an Italian coin designer and medalist active in Europe during the late 18th and early 19th centuries.


Napoleone 5 lire 76001838

A 5 lire coin engraved by Manfredini.

Manfredini was born in 1771 in Bologna. He eventually began teaching art at the Brera Academy before working at the Milan Mint from 1798 to 1830. During his time at the mint, Manfredini designed several coins for Napoleon's Kingdom of Italy, in collaboration with artists Jerome Vassallo and Joseph Salvirch. When tasked with engraving a coin, Manfredini would normally work on its obverse and leave his team to complete the reverse.

Manfredini was removed from the mint staff and exiled from the Kingdom of Italy in 1810 for allowing 5 lira coins bearing the erroneous legend "NATOLEONE" instead of "NAPOLEONE" to circulate. However, his responsibility in this matter remains controversial, as some authors claim that whenever Manfredini noticed a coin with an error he would destroy it, while others suggest that the erroneous coin likely resulted from the myopia that began to afflict Manfredini as he grew older in age.

According to another story, he was expelled for designing a medal in 1809 with Vassallo that commemorated Napoleon's victory at Ratisbon. The medal depicted a giant crushed by a mountain on the reverse, which may have been interpreted as an allusion to Napoleonic despotism.

Manfredini returned to Milan following Napoleon's abdication in 1814. He worked for Holy Roman Emperor Francis II during the French Restoration and designed coins of the Duchy of Parma, Piacenza and Guastalla featuring Francis' daughter, Duchess Marie Louise.

Manfredini died in Milan in 1840 at the age of 68 or 69.

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