France 1862-K 2 centimes
The first specimen was part of lot 466 in Classical Numismatic Group's sale of the Lissner Collection (Chicago, July 2014), where it sold for $786.50. The catalog description noted, "FRANCE, Empire. Lot of eight (8) CU and AR Denominations. Lot includes the following denominations: ...Second Empire. Napoléon III. 1852-1870. CU 2 Centimes à la tête laurée. Bordeaux mint; différents: anchor and crossed hammer and pick. Désiré-Albert Barre, engraver general. Ernest Dumas, director. Dated 1862 K. In NGC encapsulation graded MS 65 RB. Very lustrous coin with 70% red surfaces...." The regime of Napoleon III finally carried out plans developed during the 1840's to melt down and remint all the old copper circulating in France, some of it dating back to before the Revolution of 1789. Several branch mints were reopened for this purpose. The existing mints were Paris ("A"), Strasbourg ("BB") and Bordeaux ("K"); the reopened mints were Lille ("W"), Marseilles ("MA"), Rouen ("B") and Lyon ("D"). This "laureate head" type was struck 1861-62 only at Paris, Bordeaux (shown here) and Strasbourg. The two centimes is the rarest of the bronze denominations of Napoleon III, tho none are rare.
Specification: bronze, 2 g, 20 mm diameter, plain edge, designed by Jean-Jacques Barré (1793-1855). The first specimen Ø20 mm, 1.99 g, 6h axis.
Recorded Mintage: 13,594,535, highest mintage date of any two centimes.
Catalog reference: F.108A/7, Gad-104; KM 796.6.
- Cuhaj, George S., and Thomas Michael, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900, 7th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2012.
- Gadoury, Victor, Monnaies Françaises, 1789-2011, 20me éd., Monaco: Éditions Victor Gadoury, 2011.
- Prieur, Michel, and Laurent Schmitt, Le Franc 10: Les Monnaies, Paris: Éditions les Chevau-légers, 2014.
- Teller, M. Louis, and Victor England, Jr., The Richard Lissner Collection, Lancaster, PA: Classical Numismatic Group, 2014.