Genuine Belgian Medal Commemorative of the Reign of Leopold II miniature, NICE CONDITION, diameter: cca 15 mm
HISTORY OF THE AWARD:
Medal Commemorative of the Reign of Leopold II (Médaille Commemorative du règne de Léopold II / Herinneringsmedaille aan de Regeerperiode van Leopold II), 1865-1905 - Circular gilt bronze medal on ribbon bow and laterally pierced ball suspension; the face with a cross pattée alisée with a wreath of oak and laurel between the arms, a circular central medallion bearing the head of King Leopold II facing left; the reverse with a cross pattée alisée with a wreath of oak and laurel between the arms, a circular central medallion bearing the dates ‘1865 1905’. The medal was instituted on 21 July 1905 to mark the fortieth year of the reign of King Leopold II and was awarded to long-serving public servants. Leopold II (1835-1909) succeeded his father on 10 December 1865 and reigned until his death on 17 December 1909 when he was succeeded by his nephew, Albert I. A controversial figure, today best remembered for his exploitation of the Belgian Congo, managed with great brutality as his private domain, Leopold II also presided over 44 years of peace and prosperity at home.