France 1855-A 5 francs

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Ponterio sale 168, lot 50419
photo courtesy Stack's Bowers

The silver five francs of Napoleon III (1852-70) were issued in massive quantities. All silver five francs were officially recalled in 1928 but ceased to circulate after World War I. This coin was legal tender in the United States until 1857 at a value of 93 cents. This specimen was lot 50419 in Ponterio sale 168 (Philadelphia, August 2012), where it sold for $834. The catalog description[4] noted, "FRANCE. 5 Franc, 1855-A. PCGS MS-63+." This date is is the common date for the type, which is priced about three and a half times the very common "laureate head" type (1861-70).

Specification: 37 mm diameter, 25 grams, .900 fine silver, edge lettered DIEU PROTEGE LA FRANCE. Designed by Louis Charles Bouvet, 1802-1887.

Mintage: 4,075,000.

Catalog reference: F.330/3, KM 782.1, Gad-734, Dav-95.


  • Michael, Thomas, and Tracy L. Schmidt, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900, 9th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2019.
  • Gadoury, Victor, Monnaies Françaises, 1789-2011, 20me éd., Monaco: Éditions Victor Gadoury, 2011.
  • Prieur, Michel, and Laurent Schmitt, Le Franc 10: Les Monnaies. Paris: Éditions les Chevau-légers, 2014.
  • [4]Ponterio, Richard, Ponterio sale 168: The Official ANA Auction, Irvine, CA: Stack's Bowers LLC, 2012.

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