Louis M. writes: I have a silver coin of Napoleon Imparatore E RE dated 1812 with him facing right. On the other side is an eagle with a crown above it and a shield on its chest with the words REGNO D’ITALIA and 5 LIRE at the base. Also, on the edge of the coin are the letters FERT repeated 3 times. Please tell me the value of this coin as I only paid $13 for it, and any information you may have is of interest as I plan to start collecting.
You have a 1812 Kingdom of Napoleon (Italy) 5 Lira. Napoleon had conquered many of the Northern Italian city states at the approximate time that the First French Empire was proclaimed in 1804. Napoleon was crowned Emperor of Italy in Naples in 1805.
The coinage system was arranged as: 100 centesimi=20 Soldi, 20 soldi= 1 Lira. Coinage of the centesimo, 3 centesimi, soldo, 10 centesimi, 5 soldi, 10 soldi, 15 soldi, Lira, 2 Lira and 5 Lira were struck. Coins were minted at three mints, B=Bologna, M=Milan V=Venice.
The 1812 5 lira shows the head of Napoleon facing right, the date is below. The legend, NAPOLEON IMPERATORE E RE ( Napoleon Emperor and King), is around. The reverse shows a crowned eagle and shield, 5. Lire below. The legend, REGNO D’ITALIA (Kingdom of Italy), is around. The coin weighs 25 grams and was struck on a .900 fine silver planchet (.7234 troy ounces of pure silver).
Value depends on grade (condition), variety and mint mark. Approximate range in average circulated grades: $25 -$200. Uncirculated pieces are worth a great deal more and some varieties add to the potential value.
Note that dangerous counterfeits exist though they are most often seen in high grade. You can have your coin authenticated by ANA, PCGS or NGC. See the CoinSite Links page .