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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Geography ▸ FranceView Options:  |  |  |   

France (Mints and Types)

This theme includes Celtic, Greek, Roman and later coins struck at mints in France and coins related to historical events which took place in France. Coins struck at mints in France during the Constantinian Era and Late Roman Period are very popular with collectors because they are often the most interesting and attractive coins of the period.


Roman Civil War, Vitellius, c. 69 A.D.

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This coin is M71 in Butcher, K. & M. Pointing, The Metallurgy of Roman Silver Coinage: From the Reform of Nero to the Reform of Trajan (Cambridge, 2015). There is a tiny drill hole on the edge where silver was extracted for testing. This was an important coin in the study, with test results indicating 93.9% silver bullion and Gallic isotope ratios strongly suggesting similarity with other Vitellius coins from Gallia, not coins minted for Galba.
RS86684. Silver denarius, Butcher-Pointing M71 (this coin), RIC I Civil Wars 121, BMCRE I 65, RSC I Galba 363, BnF I 75, Martin 7, EF, toned, tight flan, light corrosion, test drill hole on edge, weight 3.127 g, maximum diameter 17.5 mm, die axis 180o, Southern Gaul(?) mint, c. 69 A.D.; obverse clasped hands, FIDES above, EXERCITVVM below; reverse clasped hands, FIDES above, PRAETORIANORVM curving along the edge below; from the Jyrki Muona Collection, ex Helios, auction 4 (Munich, 14 Oct 2009), lot 270; ex Coll. A. Lynn collection; ex Classical Numismatic Group, auction 54 (14 June 2000), lot 1484; ex P. DeVicci collection; rare; $1800.00 (€1530.00)
 


Anglo-Gallic, Henry VI de Lancastre, King of France and England, 1422 - 1453

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On 12 December 1422, each mint was assigned a mint-mark to be placed at the beginning of the obverse and reverse legends. The omission of the pellet beside the root mint-mark was ordered 17 July 1432.

In 1422, the year old king of England inherited the French throne through his mad grandfather Charles VI of France; the iconography of this type represents the unification of the two nations. Ten years later Joan of Arc would make an appearance which would eventually loosen the English grip on France until by 1436 only Normandy and part of Maine remained in Henry's control.
UK86158. Silver grand blanc aux écus, Elias 285 (R), Ciani 602, Duplessy 445, Lafaurie 449, SCBC-SII 8166; root with pellet left mintmark, F, toned, reverse double struck, weight 2.876 g, maximum diameter 28.5 mm, die axis 90o, Lemans mint, 12 Dec 1422 - 17 Jul 1432; obverse (pellet and root) FRANCORVm: ET: ANGLIE: REX (King of France and England), shields of France (on left) and England (on right), side by side, hERICVS above; reverse (pellet root) SIT: nOmEN: DnI: BENEDICV (Blessed be the name of the Lord), Latin cross, fleur-de-lis to left, leopard left on right, hERICVS below; rare; $395.00 (€335.75) ON RESERVE


England, Edward I Longshanks, 1272 - 1307

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Elias notes, "In my experience for every 30 or 40 deniers with the EDWARD' FILI' legend only one with the EDWARDVS REX occurs."

Known as Edward Longshanks for his height of 6 ft. 2 in., and sometimes as the "Hammer of the Scots." Edward was ruthless in pursuing his aims and crushing those who opposed him. He conquered large parts of Wales and almost succeeding in doing the same to Scotland.
UK86321. Silver denier au lion, Elias 15 (RR), SCBC-SII 8016, Duplessy 1039, Poey d'Avant 2790, aVF, toned, scratches, earthen deposits, small edge crack, weight 0.736 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, die axis 180o, Aquitaine mint, 1272 - 1307; obverse + EDWARDVS REX (King Edward, S on its side), lion passant left within inner circle; reverse + DVX AqVITANIE (Duke of Aquitaine), cross pattée within inner circle; very rare; $395.00 (€335.75)
 


France, Charles IX, 1560 - 1574

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Charles IX ascended the throne of France upon the death of his brother Francis II. After decades of tension, war broke out between Protestants and Catholics after the massacre of Vassy in 1562. In 1572, after several unsuccessful peace attempts, Charles ordered the marriage of his sister Margaret of Valois to Henry of Navarre, a major Protestant nobleman and the future King Henry IV of France, in a last desperate bid to reconcile his people. Facing popular hostility against this policy of appeasement, Charles allowed the massacre of all Huguenot leaders who gathered in Paris for the royal wedding at the instigation of his mother Catherine de' Medici. This event, known as the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre, was a significant blow to the Huguenot movement. Religious civil warfare soon began anew. Charles ordered the Siege of La Rochelle, but was unable to take the Protestant stronghold. Charles died of tuberculosis without legitimate male issue in 1574 and was succeeded by his brother Henry III.
WO86329. Silver teston, cf. Roberts 3551, Duplessy 1063, Ciani 1356, Lafaurie 895, VF, toned, scratches and marks, areas of weak strike, weight 8.927 g, maximum diameter 28.7 mm, die axis 255o, Saint-Lô mint, 1561; obverse CAROLVS•VIIII•D•G•FRANCO•REX• (Charles IX, by the Grace of God, King of France), laureate and cuirassed boy's bust left, C (mint-mark) below; reverse SIT•NOMEN•DNI•BENEDICIM•M•D•LXI (Blessed be the name of the Lord, 1561), crowned coat of arms (three fleur de lis), crowned C's flanking; very rare; $360.00 (€306.00) ON RESERVE


France, Henri IV, 2 August 1589 - 14 May 1610

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Henry IV, also known as "Good King Henry", was King of Navarre from 1572 to 1610. Upon the death of his brother-in-law and distant cousin Henry III of France, Henry was called to the French succession in 1589. He initially kept the Protestant faith but after four years and at least 12 assassination attempts, he abjured the Calvinist faith. He promulgated the Edict of Nantes in 1598, guaranteeing religious freedom and ending the Wars of Religion. He was assassinated in 1610 by a fanatical Catholic. Unpopular immediately after his accession, Henry's popularity greatly improved after his death. The "Good King Henry" (le bon roi Henri) was remembered for his geniality and his great concern about the welfare of his subjects. Henry is said to have originated the oft-repeated phrase, "a chicken in every pot."
WO86330. Silver 1/4 Ecu, cf. Duplessy 1224A var. (RX vice REX), Ciani 1517 var. (RX vice R), KM 27, VF, toned, well centered, tight flan, bumps and scratches, small edge crack, weight 9.507 g, maximum diameter 28.9 mm, die axis 0o, Bayonne mint, 2nd type, 1605 L; obverse + •SIT•NOMEN•DOMINI•BENEDICVM• (Blessed be the name of the Lord) followed by Bayonne mintmark, crowned shield of France, II - II flanking across field; reverse + HENRICVS IIII•D•G•FRANC•E•NAVA•RX•1605 (Henry IV, by the Grace of God, King of France and Navarre), Foliate cross, quatrefoil around cross of five pellets at center, lily arms, pellet at each end; $350.00 (€297.50)
 


France, Charles IX, 1560 - 1574

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Charles IX ascended the throne of France upon the death of his brother Francis II. After decades of tension, war broke out between Protestants and Catholics after the massacre of Vassy in 1562. In 1572, after several unsuccessful peace attempts, Charles ordered the marriage of his sister Margaret of Valois to Henry of Navarre, a major Protestant nobleman and the future King Henry IV of France, in a last desperate bid to reconcile his people. Facing popular hostility against this policy of appeasement, Charles allowed the massacre of all Huguenot leaders who gathered in Paris for the royal wedding at the instigation of his mother Catherine de' Medici. This event, known as the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre, was a significant blow to the Huguenot movement. Religious civil warfare soon began anew. Charles ordered the Siege of La Rochelle, but was unable to take the Protestant stronghold. Charles died of tuberculosis without legitimate male issue in 1574 and was succeeded by his brother Henry III.
WO86742. Silver teston, Duplessy 1071, Lafaurie 9015, cf. Roberts 3551, Ciani -, VF, toned, parts of legends weak, weight 9.308 g, maximum diameter 29.5 mm, die axis 45o, Lyon mint, 1566 D; obverse CAROLVS•VIIII•D•G•FRANCO•REX•M• (Charles IX, by the Grace of God, King of France), laureate and cuirassed boy's bust left, D (mint-mark) below; reverse + SIT•NOMEN•DNI•BENEDICIM•M•D•LXVI•M.clover. (Blessed be the name of the Lord, 1566), crowned coat of arms (three fleur de lis); ex Gordon Andreas Singer; very rare; $350.00 (€297.50)
 


Anglo-Gallic, Edward III, 1372 - 1377

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This type and similar billon Anglo-Gallic coins looked silver when issued, but after some use turned black, hence their nickname, "black money." They were usually hastily and poorly struck, heavily circulated and worn, and seldom hoarded. Surviving examples are now rare and mostly low grade.
WO86745. Billon denier au leopard, Elias 95 (RR), Duplessy Féodales 1095A, SCBC-SII 8090, Poey d'Avant 2793 (Edward I), Boudeau -, aVF, well centered on a tight flan, uneven strike with parts of legend weak, areas of light corrosion, weight 0.683 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, 2nd type; obverse + EDVARDVS : REX (King Edward), leopard passant left above AnGL' between lines, rosette below, all within inner circle, double pellet stops; reverse + DVX : AQITAnIE (Duke of Aquitaine), cross pattée, within inner circle, double pellet stops; very rare; $250.00 (€212.50)
 


Galba, 3 April 68 - 15 January 69 A.D.

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The quinarius, half a denarius, was introduced along with the denarius in 211 B.C., but was only sporadically struck. Quinarii appear to have been struck mainly for special occasions, perhaps primarily for donatives, when the emperor distributed money to the people. This was the first quinarius type struck since early in the principate of Augustus.
RS86832. Silver quinarius, RIC I 132 (R2), King 1, RSC I 317, BMCRE I 244, BnF III 63, SRCV I 2112, F, bumps, marks, scratches, uneven toning, porous, obverse a little off center, weight 1.587 g, maximum diameter 14.8 mm, die axis 240o, Gaul, probably Lugdunum mint, Nov 68 - 15 Jan 69; obverse SER GALBA IMP CAESAR AVG P M T P, laureate head right; reverse VICTORIA GALBAE AVG, Victory standing right on globe, raising wreath in extended right hand, palm frond over left shoulder in left hand; ex Beast Coins; very rare; $250.00 (€212.50)
 


Romano-British Empire, Carausius, Mid 286 - Spring or Early Summer 293 A.D.

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Rouen (Latin: Rotomagus) is a city on the River Seine in the north of France. It is the capital of the region of Normandy. Formerly one of the largest and most prosperous cities of medieval Europe, Rouen was the seat of the Exchequer of Normandy during the Middle Ages. It was one of the capitals of the Anglo-Norman dynasties, which ruled both England and large parts of modern France from the 11th to the 15th centuries.
RA73288. Billon antoninianus, Webb Carausius 736, RIC V-2 662 (R), Carausian Hoard 72, SRCV IV 13715 var. (legends), Hunter IV -, King Unmarked -, Bicester -, gF, green patina, earthen encrustations, some corrosion, weight 5.197 g, maximum diameter 21.3 mm, die axis 225o, Rotomagus (Rouen, France) mint, mid 286 - mid 293 A.D.; obverse IMP C CARAVSIVS AVG, radiate and draped bust right; reverse SALVS AVG (the health of the Emperor), Salus standing half left, from patera in her right hand, feeding snake rising from the left side of a column altar at her feet, cornucopia in left hand, nothing in exergue; rare; $230.00 (€195.50)
 


Anglo-Gallic, Richard I the Lionhearted, Count of Poitou and King of England 1189 - 1199

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The only coins of Richard struck in his own name are those of his French possessions; English issues attributed to Richard are all in the name and types of his father, Henry II.

Richard I is known as Richard Coeur de Lion or Richard the Lionhearted for his bravery in battle. He was born and spent his childhood in England. By the age of 16, Richard had command of his own army and put down rebellions against his father in Poitou. As king, he was off on Crusade, in captivity, or defending his lands in France, spending as little as 6 months of his 10-year reign in England. He spoke French and Occitan, but never learned English. Rather than regarding his kingdom as a responsibility requiring his presence as ruler, it seems he saw it primarily as a source of revenue to support his armies. As the leader of the Third Crusade after the departure of Philip II of France, he won considerable victories against Saladin, but did not retake Jerusalem. He was seen as a pious hero by his subjects and is one of the few kings of England remembered by his epithet, rather than regnal number, and is an enduring iconic figure both in England and in France. Robin Hood lived in Sherwood Forest during Richard's reign.
UK86378. Silver denier, Elias 8, Duplessy Feodales 920, Poey d'Avant 2506, SCBC-SII 8008, VF, toned, slightly uneven strike, weight 1.005 g, maximum diameter 19.2 mm, die axis 180o, Melle (Deux-Sèvres) mint, 1189 - 1199; obverse + RICARDVS REX (King Richard), cross pattée within inner dot border; reverse PIC/TAVIE/NSIS ([County of] Poitou) in three lines across field; $180.00 (€153.00) ON RESERVE




  



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