In Milan, King Louis XIV as a locksmith, key in hand, approaches Victor Amadeus II, Duke of Savoy, as a banker weighing coin. Etching attributed to C. Allard, 1706.
- Allard, Carel, 1648-approximately 1709.
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About this work
The banker weighing coin on the right is identified by Muller and others as Duke Victor Amadeus II of Savoy, subsequently (from 1720) King Victor Amadeus I of Sardinia. The Rijksmuseum online catalogue (accessed 17 September 2014) by contrast identifies him as Louis XIV of France. Muller identifies the masked figure on the left as King Louis XIV: he holds a key surmounted by the fleur de lys, and has similar emblems, possibly also meant to be the fleur de lys, on his trousers. In the background, the gateway to a fortified city labelled "Milano". The 1702 version suggests that Louis XIV is holding the key to bullion chests believed to have been lost to the French at the battle of Vigo Bay on 23 October 1702
The side of the banker's desk contains coins representing the Grand Alliance (Austria, England, the Dutch Republic, the Palatinate etc.), the Holy Roman Emperor, Spain, the Duke of Marlborough, and Eugene of Savoy. Below them, France is represented as a sinking sun. On his desk is a cabinet with drawers labeled "Fijn en vals goud" (fine and false gold), "Fijne en valse juweelen" (fine and false jewels), and "Muntbriefjes" (currency notes)