France 1726-E 1/2 ecu

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Jean Elsen sale 124, lot 943
This specimen was lot 943 in Jean Elsen sale 124 (Brussels, March 2015), where it sold for €500 (about US$623 including buyer's fees). The catalog description[2] noted,
"FRANCE, Royaume, Louis XV (1715-1774), AR demi-écu aux rameaux d'olivier, 1726 E, Tours. Droit: B. habillé à gauche, décoré de la croix du Saint-Esprit. Revers: Ecu de France couronné, entre deux rameaux d'olivier. Petites griffes et fines traces d'ajustage au droit. Belle patine. Superbe. (kingdom of France, Louis XV (1715-74), silver half écu of the olive branches of 1726, Tours mint. Obverse: uniformed bust to left, decorated with the cross of the Holy Spirit; reverse: crowned arms of France between two olive branches. Nice patina, extremely fine.)"
Shown is a demi-écu aux branches d'olivier ("half écu with olive wreath") struck at Tours 1726-31 and 1739 during the reign of Louis XV. This coin was part of the great coinage reform of Cardinal Fleury which finally terminated the manipulations which had disrupted the economy since the 1690's. Unfortunately, after a good start in 1726-27, mintages of the demi-écu dwindled and most dates from the 1730's are quite scarce.

Recorded mintage: 202,417[1], a scarce date.

Specification: 14.74 g, .917 fine silver, 31-33 mm diameter, edge lettered DOMINE SALVUM FAC REGEM, designed by Norbert Roéttiers, this specimen 14,73 g.

Catalog reference: Dupl., 1676; Gad-313, Dr/4 no. 827, Dr/2 no. 580, KM 484.8.

Source:

  • [1]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.
  • 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.
  • [2]Elsen, Philippe, et al., Vente Publique 124, Brussels: Jean Elsen et ses Fils S.A., 2015.

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