Besancon 1656 ducat

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photo courtesy Stack's
Besancon 1656 ducat rev Stacks 110-643.jpg
Franche Comte in 1648, from Putzger's Atlas
This specimen was lot 643 in Stack's "Vermuele, Ward & Mexico Maxico" sale (New York, January 2010), where it did not sell. The catalog description[1] noted,
"FRANCE. BESANÇON. City Coinage. 1 Ducat, 1656. Standing armored Charles V with sword and orb. Rv. Standard Imperial tablet-arabesque design, DVCATVS/ CIVIT/ BISVNT/ AD. LEG./ IMP./ 1656. Type Fr.78, which lists only 1641 and 1655, KM lists only 1655, both references call the unpriced denomination 'rare.' A handsome design recalling the Emperor's granting of the Mint right only if all coins struck would bear his portrait. Truly rare and intriguing, this coin is a fine subject for in-depth research. AU-55 (NGC)."
Altho today Besançon is part of France, being the chief city of the Franche-Comte, in 1656 it was part of the Holy Roman Empire. It was incorporated into France in 1678. French coins struck there bear the mintmark "CC".

Recorded mintage: unknown.

Specification: 3.5 g, .986 fine gold, .110 troy oz AGW.

Catalog reference: Fr-78, KM 78.


  • Friedberg, Arthur L. and Ira S. Friedberg, Gold Coins of the World, From Ancient Times to the Present, 7th ed., Clifton, NJ: Coin and Currency Institute, 2003.
  • [1]Kraljevich, John, and Frank Van Valen, The Vermuele, Ward & Mexico Maxico Collections, New York: Stack's, 2009.
  • Cuhaj, George S., and Thomas Michael, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1601-1700, 6th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2014.

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