1912, Italy, Victor Emmanuel III. Scarce Silver 2 Lire Coin.
Mint Year: 1912
Mint Place: Rome
Denomination: 2 Lire
Material: Silver (.835)
Obverse: Uniformed bust of Victor Emanuel III right.
Legend: . VITTORIO . EMANUELLE . III . RE . D’ITALIA .
Reverse: Italia (personification of Italy) on standing inscribed (FERT) quadriga, wearing helment and holding shield and olive branch.
Comment: Behind her a throne and palm branches. Engraver´s and maker´s signatures (D.CALANDRA.M / MOTTI . INC) below.
Legend: 1912 (R – mint inital of Rome) L.2 (*)
Victor Emmanuel III (11 November 1869, Naples, Campania – 28 December 1947) was a member of the House of Savoy and King of Italy (29 July 1900 – 9 May 1946). In addition, he claimed the crowns of Ethiopia and Albania and claimed the titles Emperor of Ethiopia (1936–41) and King of Albania (1939–43) which were unrecognised by the great powers in 1937 and 1939, respectively. During his long reign, Victor Emmanuel III saw two world wars and the birth, rise, and fall of Fascism in the Kingdom of Italy.
He has been seldom treated sympathetically by historians. His almost forced abdication on the eve of a referendum on the future of the Italian monarchy achieved nothing — being too little, far too late. At worst, it reminded undecided voters of the role the monarchy and the King’s own actions (or inactions) had played during the Fascist period, at precisely the moment when monarchists were hoping that voters would focus on the positive impression created by Crown Prince Umberto and Princess Maria José as the de facto king and queen of Italy since 1944. The ‘May’ King and Queen, Umberto and Maria José, in their brief, month-long reign, were unable to shift the burden of recent history and opinion. (Some present-day historians have speculated that, had Victor Emmanuel abdicated in favour of Umberto shortly after the Allied invasion of Sicily in 1943, Umberto’s relative popularity might have saved the monarchy.)