Description:This early 15th century gold coin features Jesus Christ, standing within a mandorla containing nine stars. In early Christian art, the mandorla was used to depict sacred moments which transcend time and space, such as the Resurrection. The legend reads SIT T XPE DAT QTV REGIS ISTE DVCAT, which translates as "To thee, O'Christ, duchy, which thou rulest, be dedicated." The reverse side depicts Saint Mark the Evangelist, who is the Patron Saint of Venice and whose remains rest in the city. Saint Mark is shown presenting a banner to the Doge of Venice, Tommaso Mocenigo, who was the chief magistrate and leader. Venetian gold ducat coins were struck in near pure gold and the design was consistent from its introduction in 1284 to the conquest of Venice by Napoleon in 1797.
The Doge of Venice was elected for life by the city-state's aristocracy and was commonly the shrewdest elder. In 1414 Tommaso Mocenigo became Doge and in 1416 the Venetian navy scored a crushing victory over the Ottoman Empire at The Battle of Gallipoli. The Venetians had many battles with the Muslim Turks who continued to rival Venice for domination of the Eastern Mediterranean. However, Venice was known as the "Most Serene Republic of Venice", as they preferred to trade, rather than participate in unnecessary war activities. In the Middle Ages, the Roman Catholic stronghold of Venice became extremely wealthy through its control of trade between Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean.