France 1590-A ecu d'or Fr-389

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Jean Elsen sale 127, lot 1335
This specimen was lot 1335 in Jean Elsen sale 127 (Brussels, December 2015), where it sold for €420 (about US$539 including buyer's fees). The catalog description[1] noted,
"FRANCE, Royaume, Charles X, cardinal de Bourbon (1589-1590), AV écu d'or au soleil, 1590A, Paris. D/ Ecu de France couronné, sous un soleil. R/ Croix anillée et fleurdelisée. Rare Trace de pliure. Très Beau. (kingdom of France, pretender Charles X, cardinal of Bourbon, 1589-90, gold écu d'or of the sunburst of 1590, Paris mint. Obverse: crowned arms of France below a sunburst; reverse: floriate, voided cross. Rare, creased, very fine.)"
This coin is called the écu d'or au soleil in Duplessy[2] with a face value of fifty sols tournois. Charles X was actually the pretender put up by the Catholic League in opposition to Henry IV, who had converted from Protestantism. This Cardinal never ruled France as he was a prisoner of Henry IV.

Recorded mintage: unknown.

Specification: 3.37 g, .958 fine gold, this specimen 3,32 g.

Catalog reference: Fr-389, Dupl. 1172; Ci. 1481; Laf. 1015.


  • [2]Duplessy, Jean, Les Monnaies Françaises Royales de Hugues Capet à Louis XVI (987-1793), Tome II, 2e édition, Paris: Maison Platt, 1999.
  • 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]Elsen, Philippe, et al., Vente Publique 127, Brussels: Jean Elsen et ses Fils, S.A., 2015.

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