France 1659-StP ecu
The specimen shown is an écu de France et de Navarre à la mèche longue struck in St.-Palais during the reign of Louis XIV. This coin is a typical product of this mint in Béarn, where crude diework and bad strikes predominated. The reverse shows the arms of France impaled with the arms of Navarre. St. Palais struck this type 1652-62. Droulers prices this date about four times a typical écu à la mèche longue. Two varieties exist for the date, one with two stars on reverse only (shown here) and the other with two stars obverse and reverse (slight premium). This specimen was lot 30746 in Heritage sale 3064 (Chicago, April 2018), where it sold for $4,200. The catalog description noted, "Louis XIV Ecu de Navarre a la meche longue 1659- ★ ★ MS64 NGC, Saint Palais mint. Obv. Laureate and armored bust of Louis XIV with long curl. Rev. Crowned arms of France and Navarre with date. A truly amazing example of this very rare issue. The surfaces are pristine, with no noticeable flaws. The luster is full, and sparkles, beneath argent-gray and light russet toning. A very rare issue in virtually unimprovable condition. By far, the nicest of two examples certified by NGC and PCGS combined."
Recorded mintage: unknown.
Specification: 27.45 g, .917 fine silver, 39-41 mm diameter, plain edge, designed by Jean Warin.
Catalog reference: Dr/4 no. 442, Dr/2 no. 299, Gad-203, Dav-3800, KM 180.
- 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.
- Cuhaj, George S., and Thomas Michael, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1601-1700, 6th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2014.
- Cristiano Bierrenbach and Warren Tucker, Heritage World Coin Auction 3064, featuring the Doug Robins Collection of Canadian Tokens, Dallas, TX: Heritage Auction Galleries, 2018.