France 1656-A lys d'or

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Kunker sale 264, lot 3075
This specimen was lot 3075 in Künker sale 264 (Osnabrück, June 2015), where it sold for €6,750 (about US$8,720 including buyer's fees). The catalog description[1] noted,
"KÖNIGREICH Louis XIV, 1643-1715. Lis d'or 1656, A, Paris. Blumenkreuz mit Kronen an den Enden, in den Winkeln je eine Lilie, in der Mitte Kreis mit dem Münzzeichen A//Zwei Engel sitzen einander gegenüber und halten gemeinsam den gekrönten Wappenschild. GOLD. RR Kl. Randfehler, sehr schön-vorzüglich. (kingdom of France, Louis XIV, 1643-1715, gold lys of 1656, Paris mint. Obverse: floriate cross with crowned ends, lilies in fields, mintmark in center; reverse: two angles support crowned arms. Rare, rim cracks, very fine to extremely fine.)"
Droulers[2] notes that this coin was introduced in an attempt to thwart counterfeiters of the louis d'or, struck since 1640. The .958 fineness, similar to that used on the old écu d'or, was supposed to make the coin difficult to imitate. In this the government failed and nearly all were melted. The 1656-A is rare and the 1657-A is very rare.

Recorded mintage: 259,422[2].

Specification: 4.04 g, .958 fine gold, designed by Claude Baru, this specimen 4.03 g.

Catalog reference: Duplessy 1424; Fr-420; Gadoury 233, Dr/4 no. 347, Dr/2 no. 219.


  • [2]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.
  • 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.
  • 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]Künker Münzauktionen und Goldhandel, Catalog 264, Gold coins | Russian Coins and Medals | German Coins after 1871, Osnabrück: Fritz Rudolf Künker GmbH & Co., AG, 2015.

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