101222 | RUSSIA & SWEDEN. Northeast Passage silver Medal.
101222 | RUSSIA & SWEDEN. Northeast Passage silver Medal. Issued 1880. Commemorating Nordenskiöld's voyage upon the SS Vega (57mm, 90.55 g, 12h). By A. Lindberg.
CLAUSUM HACTENUS MARE APERUIT / AD • ER • NORDENSKIÖLD / XX JULII MDCCCLXXIX, upper portion of the globe, focused upon the Russian Empire and the North Pole; PERSEVERANTIA INGENIO / VIRTUTE / GESTA LOQUUNTUR / REG • SOC • SCIENT • ET • LITT • GOTOB • EXC • JUSSIT, Polaris and Ursa Minor above LUDOV • PALANDER / E•BRUSEWITZ F•KJELLMAN / E•ALMQVIST G•BOVE A•HOVGAARD / O•NORDQVIST A•STUXBERG / F•PETTERSSON R•NILSSON O•NORDSTRÖM / C•O•CARLSTRÖM O•INGELSON / S•ANDERSSON G•CARLSSON O•ÖMAN / O•HANSSON C•LUNDGREN D•ASPLUND / C•LEWIN P•LUSTIG C•LJUNGSTRÖM / C•J•SMÅLÄNNING P•LIND P•FÄSTE / J•HAUGAN P •JOHNSSEN / P•SIEVERTSEN A•BORSRÖM in twelve lines; anchor and four banners below. Edge: A few light marks, otherwise plain.
Cf. Numismatiska Meddelanden p. 255, 2 (for type). Mint State. Deeply toned, with an attractive iridescence and brilliance, though some moderate hairlines in the fields are noted. A fairly rare issue, and especially so in silver. Compare to a gold issue in Meister & Sonntag 3 (6 October 2005), lot 3422, which realized a total of over $16,300 (plus buyer's fee).
Born into the famous Fenno-Swedish Nordenskiöld family of scientists, Nils Adolf Erik was an accomplished explorer who—along with Louis Palander as captain—led the expedition of the SS Vega in 1878-1880, successfully navigating through the northeast passage and being the first to circumnavigate Eurasia––a feat long-considered to be among the highest in the history of Swedish science.