France 1644-B 1/4 ecu

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Jean Elsen sale 145, lot 1104
This specimen was lot 1104 in Jean Elsen sale 145 (Brussels, September 2020), where it sold for €200 (about US$285 including buyer's fees). The catalog description[1] noted,
"FRANCE, Royaume, Louis XIV (1643-1715), AR quart d'écu, 1644B, Rouen. Frappé au marteau. D/ Croix fleurdelisée. LVD XIIII dans la légende. R/ Ecu de France couronné, entre II-II. . Rare. Très Beau à Superbe. (kingdom of France, Louis XIV, 1643-1715, silver quarter écu of 1644, Rouen mint, struck by the hammer. Obverse: floriate cross; reverse: crowned arms of France divide "II-II". Rare, Very Fine - Extremely Fine.)"
This is among the last hammered coins struck in France. After production of the franc d'argent was suspended in 1586, this was the largest silver coin regularly struck in France prior to the introduction of milled coinage in the 1640's. The milled quart d'écu à la meche courte (Dr/4 no. 645A), struck the same year at Paris and Lyon, was only 6.86 g. Under Henry III, the hammered quart d'écu had a face value of fifteen sols tournois, by 1645, its value had risen to 21 sols tournois. This variety has the king's name at the top of the shield side and was used 1643-49 at eleven mints.

Recorded mintage: 77,112; fairly common.

Specification: 9.71 g, .917 fine silver, 30-31 mm diameter, plain edge, engraved by Richard Lamy, this specimen 9,65 g.

Catalog reference: Dr/4 no. 429, Dr/2 no. 282, Dupl-1451; Gad-136.

Source:

  • [2]Droulers, Frédéric, Répertoire General des Monnaies de Louis XIII à Louis XVI (1610-1792), 2nd édition. Paris: AFPN, 1998.
  • 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 145, Brussels: Jean Elsen et ses Fils S.A., 2020.

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