France (1794)-R 2 sols
This specimen was lot 314 in Classical Numismatic Group's sale of the Lissner Collection (Chicago, August 2014), where it sold for $5,142.50. The catalog description noted, "FRANCE, Premier République. Convention nationale. 1792-1795. Æ Double sol aux balances. Orleans mint; différents: star and dividers. Joseph Amy Guiquero. engraver. Chares-Pierre Delespine, director. Dated L’An 2 R (AD 1794). In NGC encapsulation graded MS 66. Gem lustrous brilliant uncirculated with just a hint of tone. The highest ever graded for any Double sol from 1738-1793. A true wonder coin and very rare. Purchased from Wade Hinderling, December 1992." This coin was minted at Orléans during the throes of the Revolution. 1794 was the year of the Terror. Amid the chaos, large quantities of these copper two sols were issued, along with six and twelve deniers (¼ and ½ sols). The 1791-93 issues bear the bust of the king but his ouster forced the removal of his portrait. The obverse shows the tablet of the law with the motto, "LES HOMMES SONT EGAUX DEVANT LA LOI," (all men are equal before the law) and the reverse shows the balance scales of justice. This type was hurriedly and crudely made and is rarely found better than VG.
Recorded mintage: unknown but somewhat scarce.
Specification: 24.47 g, bronze or brass. This specimen is Ø34 mm, 22.06 g, 6h axis.
Catalog reference: VG 32; KM 623.4.
- Michael, Thomas, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1701-1800, 7th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2016.
- Gadoury, Victor, Monnaies Françaises, 1789-2011, 20me éd., Monaco: Éditions Victor Gadoury, 2011.
- Teller, M. Louis, and Victor England, Jr., The Richard Lissner Collection, Lancaster, PA: Classical Numismatic Group, 2014.