Italian scudo

The scudo (pl. "scudi") was the name for a number of coins used in Italy until the 19th century. The name, like that of the French écu and the Spanish and Portuguese escudo, was derived from the Latin "scutum" ("shield"). From the 16th centuryKlütz: "Münznamen..."] , the name was used in Italy for large silver coins. Sizes varied depending on the issuing country.

First "scudo d'argento" (silver shield) was issued in 1551 by Charles V (1519-1556) in Milan.

Under Maria Theresa and Joseph II the "scudo d'argento" had a weight of 23.10 g and a finess of 896/1000. [Montenegro: "Manuale..."]

In the Kingdom of Lombardy-Venetia (under the control of the Habsburg Austrian Empire), the Lombardy-Venetia scudo was equivalent to the Conventionsthaler and was subdivided into six "lire".

Before the Napoleonic Wars, the lira was subdivided into 20 "soldo", each of 12 "denari". After, the lira was made up of 100 "centesimi".

When Austria-Hungary decimalized in 1857, the scudo was replaced by the "florin" at a rate of 2 florin = 1 scudo. Coins of ½ and 1 soldo were issued, equal to ½ and 1 kreuzer, for use in Lombardy and Venetia.

In the Papal States, the Papal States scudo was the currency until 1866. It was divided into 100 "baiocchi" (sing. "baiocco"), each of 5 "quattrini". It was replaced by the lira, equal to the Italian lira.

The Duchy of Modena and Reggio also issued scudi, worth four lire or one third of a "tallero".



* Konrad Klütz. "Münznamen und ihre Herkunft". Vienna, moneytrend Verlag, 2004. ISBN 3-9501620-3-8
* Eupremio Montenegro. "Manuale del collezionista di monete italiane". XI ed. 1996, Torino.

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