France 1642-A 1/2 ecu

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Jean Elsen sale 125, lot 1756
This specimen was lot 1756 in Jean Elsen sale 125 (Brussels, June 2015), where it did not sell. The catalog description[1] noted,
"FRANCE, Royaume, Louis XIII (1610-1643), AR demi-écu, 1642-A, Paris. Premier poinçon. Rosette initiale entre deux points. D/ B. l. et dr. à d. R/ Ecu de France couronné. Rare Belle patine. Défaut du coin au revers Très Beau à Superbe. (kingdom of France, Louis XIII (1610-43), silver half écu of 1642, Paris mint, first punch, rose between two points. Obverse: aureate, armored bust to right; reverse: crowned arms of France. Rare, nice toning, planchet defect on reverse, very fine to extremely fine.)"
This specimen is a demi-écu struck in Paris at the end of the reign of Louis XIII of France (r. 1610-43). It is a product of a major reform of French coinage which attempted to abolish hammered coinage once and for all. In this the regime was not successful, but large quantities of these handsome coins were released 1641-43 and the type is reasonably available today. All are Paris mint except for a small issue from Lyon in 1643. The last hammered quarter écu listed is dated 1652.

Recorded mintage: 573,323 (rose) plus 404,430 (rose between points) plus 154,490 (point).

Specification: 13.72 g, .917 fine silver, 29-34 mm diameter, this specimen 13,73 g.

Catalog reference: Dr/4 no. 121B, Dr/2 no. 101, KM 135.1, Dupl. 1346; Ci. 1659; Gad-49.


  • Droulers, Frédéric, Répertoire General des Monnaies de Louis XIII à Louis XVI (1610-1792), 4e édition. Paris: AFPN, 2009.
  • 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.
  • Cuhaj, George S., and Thomas Michael, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1601-1700, 6th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2014.
  • [1]Elsen, Philippe, et al., Vente Publique 125: Collections Dr. Jacques Marneffe, Jean-Marie Chouters et Henri Pottier, Brussels: Jean Elsen et ses Fils, S.A., 2015.

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