France 1723-L louis d'or

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Jean Elsen sale 141, lot 1417
This specimen was lot 1417 in Jean Elsen sale 141 (Brussels, June 2019), where it sold for €1,100 (about US$1,458 including buyer's fees). The catalog description[1] noted,
"FRANCE, Royaume, Louis XV (1715-1774), AV louis d'or mirliton, 1723L, Bayonne. Aux palmes courtes. D/ T. laurée à d. R/ Deux L entrelacés sous une couronne, entre deux palmes. Rare Légèrement paillé. Très Beau à Superbe. (kingdom of France, Louis XV, 1715-74, gold louis mirliton of 1723, Bayonne mint, with short palm fronds. Obverse: laureate head right; reverse: tow interlaced "L's" under a crown between two palms. Rare, lightly polished, Very Fine - Extremely Fine.)"
The specimen shown is a louis d'or Mirliton, palmes courtes, struck at the Bayonne mint (mintmark "L") during the minority of king Louis XV. This type was struck 1723 only but from twenty-seven mints. Its initial face value was 27 livres but the value rose and fell until demonetization at 17 livres 18 sols in June 1726. It would be extremely rare but for a quantity recovered in 1965 from the wreck of Le Chameau, a French troopship discovered off the coast of Nova Scotia. This type was superseded by the louis d'or Mirliton, palmes longues, struck 1723-25. That coin in turn was superseded by the louis d'or aux lunettes, struck 1726-40.

Recorded mintage: 46,800 fn[2].

Specification: 6.52 g, .917 fine gold, 22-23 mm diameter, reeded edge, this specimen 6,48 g.

Catalog reference: Dr/4 no. 798, Dr/2 no. 537, Fr-459, Dupl-1638A; Gad-338.


  • Duplessy, Jean, Les Monnaies Françaises Royales de Hugues Capet à Louis XVI (987-1793), Tome II, 2e édition, Paris: Maison Platt, 1999.
  • [2]Droulers, Frédéric, Répertoire General des Monnaies de Louis XIII à Louis XVI (1610-1792), 4e édition. Paris: AFPN, 2009.
  • 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.
  • Michael, Thomas, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1701-1800, 7th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2016.
  • Gadoury, Victor, Monnaies Royales Françaises, 1610-1792, 4me éd., Monaco: Éditions Victor Gadoury, 2012.
  • [1]Elsen, Philippe, et al., Vente Publique 141, Brussels: Jean Elsen et ses Fils, S.A., 2019.

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