Sep 11 – 16, 2022
University of Warsaw
Europe/Warsaw timezone

Modern coins under threat: an Italian prisoner prosecuted by the Allied Government in Sicily (1943)

Sep 12, 2022, 11:00 AM
Old Library - Hall 115-116

Old Library - Hall 115-116

on-line oral presentation S80. MODERN TIMES 3. EUROPE AND COLONIES


Antonino Crisà (Ghent University, Department of Archaeology )


Giuseppe Marra, an Italian soldier, was captured by the Allies in Sicily during Operation Husky (July 1943). Marra was prosecuted by a military court of the Allied Military Government of the Occupied Territories (AMGOT) for looting 24 Sicilian silver coins of Philip III (1598-1621) and Philip IV (1621-65). My paper examines new records to report on this event.
First, I contextualise the episode within my current ERC project Cultural Heritage in Danger: Archaeology and Communities in Sicily during the Second World War (1940–45). I then present the numismatic data afforded by the records. Thirdly, I assess the role of Captain Hammond (1903-2002), Monuments Officer of the AMGOT, in seizing the coins and delivering them to the Museum of Palermo. This information is essential to better understand how military authorities acted to safeguard antiquities in a war context, particularly when troops plundered coins illegally.

Primary author

Antonino Crisà (Ghent University, Department of Archaeology )

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