Avignon 1599 1/2 piastra Ber-1504

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Sincona sale 47, lot 1905
southeast France at the end of the Hundred Years War
This specimen was lot 1905 in Sincona sale 47 (Zurich, May 2018), where it sold for 850 CHF (about US$1,020 including buyer's fees). The catalog description[1] noted,
"Kirchenstaat, Clemens VIII. 1592-1605. 1/2 Piastra 1599, Avignon. Sehr selten. Sehr schön. Rand bearbeitet. (Papal States, Clement VIII, 1592-1605, half piastra of 1599, Avignon mint. Very rare, Very fine. Tooling on edge.)"
Berman lists half piastri from Avignon for 1596 and 1598-99. This specimen is light enough that it was probably clipped. The popes held Avignon and the county of Venaissin until the French Revolution, when it was forcibly annexed to France.

Recorded mintage: unknown but rare.

Specification: 16 g, .917 fine silver[2], this specimen 13.57 g.

Catalog reference: Muntoni 96, Poey d'Avant 4355, Berman 1504.


  • [2]Berman, Allen G., Papal Coins, South Salem, NY: Attic Books, 1991.
  • [1]Richter, Jürg, Auction 47, World Coins and Medals, Coins and Medals from Switzerland, Zurich: Sincona AG, 2018.

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