Design for a portrait medallion (Dupré), 1783
Photo Courtesy of the...
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Photo Courtesy of the Boston Public Library

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The images show, on the left, the design for the reverse and, on the right, that for the obverse. The reverse depicts the "Genius of Liberty," in the form of a winged nude male youth in flight, touching the earth lightly with his left foot. A flame hovers above his head; in his right hand is a staff bearing a liberty cap. At his feet are a crown and a broken scepter. In the distance on the right is a tempietto with a low dome topped by a lightning rod.

Around the edge is the beginning of an inscription: JE VO..., and above it in script is the full text: "Je vole à l'immortalité" (I fly toward immortality).

On the right side of the paper is a depiction of the obverse of the medallion, with a profile portrait of Franklin's head and shoulders. He faces toward the left; his hair falls loosely on his shoulder.

Around the edge of the medal is the inscription BENJ. FRANKLIN MINIS. PLEN. DES ETATS UNIS DE LAMERIQ.

In the lower left of the paper is a quick sketch of a globe, a burning lamp, and other attributes in a cluster. Below that, in the left corner, is a stamped signature, A. Dupré, in an oval. In the right corner are the script initials N.D., in a corner, standing for Narcisse Dupré, the son of the artist.

There were medals minted in several sizes, with different reverses.
Connection to Franklin
Designed and made by an artist who was a friend of Franklin's Terms of Use Credits