France 1774-M ecu

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Sincona sale 20, lot 2740

This specimen was lot 2740 in Sincona sale 20 (Zurich, October 2014), where it sold for CHF 300 (about US$376 including buyer's fees). The catalog description[1] noted, "Ecu à la vieille tête 1774. Toulouse. Sehr schön-vorzüglich. (very fine to extremely fine.)" The long reign of Louis XV (1715-74) saw many coin types come and go. The first part of the reign, while Louis was a child, was a period of monetary confusion and manipulation. The reforms of Cardinal Fleury (1726) stabilized the fiscal situation until the total collapse at the eve of the French Revolution. Numismatically, this period can be divided into three epochs, marked by the écu aux branches d’olivier (1726-40), the écu au bandeau (1740-72) and the écu à la vielle tête (1770-74). This specimen belongs to the late period. This type is notorious for bad strikes and heavy adjustment marks and most survivors have been harshly cleaned. This issue from Toulouse is somewhat scarce, being priced about 80% more than the common date (1774-L).

Recorded mintage: 99,320[2].

Specification: silver, 11 deniers (.917 fine), 8.3 pieces to the mark (29.488 g), face value 6 livres, 39 mm diameter. Engraved by Joseph-Charles Roéttiers, this specimen 29.18 g.

Catalog reference: Dav-1332, Duplessy 1685; Ciani 2129; KM 551.5; Dr/4 no. 821, Dr/2 no. 589.

Sources:

  • Alhéritière, Edouard, and Ludovic Deswelle, "Les écus de Louis XV de bandeau: point de situation," Numismatique et Change, No. 349 [Mai 2004], pp. 61-63.
  • Clairand, Armand, Monnaies de Louis XV, Le temps de la Stabilité Monetaire, 1726-1774, Paris: Maison Platt, 1996.
  • [2]Droulers, Frédéric, Répertoire General des Monnaies de Louis XIII à Louis XVI (1610-1792), 2nd édition. Paris: AFPN, 1998.
  • 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.
  • [1]Richter, Jürg, Numismatic Coins & Medals: Auction 20, Zurich: Sincona AG, 2014.

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