France 1638-E double tournois

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Heritage sale 3020, part of lot 23831
photo courtesy Heritage Auction Galleries

This specimen was part of lot 23831 in Heritage sale 3020 (Long Beach, September 2012), where it sold for $1,645. The catalog description[1] noted, "Mixed lot of Twenty-Four Coins Spanning Eight Centuries, This is a fascinating grouping of medieval to modern including Deniers of Aquitaine and Blancs of Charles VIII to 5 Francs of Marshall Petain. A Constitutional Ecu of Louis XVI is also included. Average grade is VF, but variation noted." These coins were produced by private contractors in large quantities at a profusion of mints and in many varieties until the 1640's. The issues of Henry IV were reasonable compared to those of the regency of Louis XIII, when the queen-mother sold production contracts to many of her supporters. Droulers[2] estimates 600 million double tournois were struck. This specimen may have come from the royal mint at Tours (mintmark "E"). It struck double tournois in various types 1631-43. The face value was two deniers.

Recorded mintage: unknown but slightly scrace.

Specification: copper, 3.1 g, plain edge.

Catalog reference: Gad-11.


  • [2]Droulers, Frédéric, Répertoire General des Monnaies de Louis XIII á Louis XVI (1610-1792), 4e édition. Paris: AFPN, 2009.
  • Cuhaj, George S., and Thomas Michael, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1601-1700, 6th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2014.
  • Duplessy, Jean, Les Monnaies Françaises Royales de Hugues Capet à Louis XVI (987-1793), Tome II, 2e édition, Paris: Maison Platt, 1999.
  • Gadoury, Victor, Monnaies Royales Françaises, 1610-1792, 4me éd., Monaco: Éditions Victor Gadoury, 2012.
  • [1]Tucker, Warren, and Cris Bierrenbach, Heritage Signature Auction 3020: World Coins, Dallas, TX: Heritage Auction Galleries, 2012.

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