France 1740-S sol

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Heritage sale 3064, lot 29014
France H3064-29014r.jpg

This coin, called a sol aux 2 L couronnés, was an attempt by the government of France to displace all the low grade silver pieces circulating since the time of Louis XIII. It was theoretically equal to 12 deniers but was actually worth much less. Most survivors today are in poor condition. The type was struck 1739-48 with nearly all the production occurring on 1740. Droulers[1] estimates the total production of this type to be around 2.3 million, compared to 81 million for the double sol. This specimen was lot 29014 in Heritage sale 3064 (Chicago, April 2018), where it sold for $660. The catalog description[2] noted, "Louis XV Sol (1/2 Sou Marqué) 1740-S MS61 NGC, Reims mint, R6. From rusted dies. Some patches of surface roughness, as struck. A rare date-mint combination not present in the Canadian National Currency Collection. From the Doug Robins Collection of Canadian Tokens."

Recorded mintage: 152,544, a fairly common date[1].

Specification: 1.09 g, .250 fine silver, 17-19 mm diameter, plain edge, designed by J.-C. Roéttiers.

Catalog reference: Duplessy 1691; Ciani 2140; Vlack-312, Dr/2 no. 597, Dr/4 no. 861.


  • [1]Droulers, Frédéric, Répertoire General des Monnaies de Louis XIII à Louis XVI (1610-1792), 4e édition. Paris: AFPN, 2009.
  • 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]Cristiano Bierrenbach and Warren Tucker, Heritage World Coin Auction 3064, featuring the Doug Robins Collection of Canadian Tokens, Dallas, TX: Heritage Auction Galleries, 2018.

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