France 1865-A 5 centimes
The first specimen was lot 414 in Classical Numismatic Group's sale of the Lissner Collection (Chicago, August 2014), where it sold for $229.90. The catalog description noted, "FRANCE, Second Empire. Napoléon III. 1852-1870. CU 5 Centimes à la tête laurée. Paris mint; différents: anchor and bee. Désiré-Albert Barre, engraver general. Renouard de Bussière, director. Dated 1865 A. In NGC encapsulation graded MS 66 RB. Gem 60% red and very nice luster." The specimen is not a key date but is priced about 50% higher than the type coin such as 1861A or 1863A. The regime of Napoleon III finally carried out plans developed during the 1840's to melt down and remint all the old copper circulating in France, some of it dating back to before the Revolution of 1789. Several branch mints were reopened for this purpose. The existing mints were Paris ("A"), Strasbourg ("BB") and Bordeaux ("K"); the reopened mints were Lille ("W"), Marseilles ("MA"), Rouen ("B") and Lyon ("D"). The coinage of bronze was suspended in 1857 but resumed in 1861 using this bust, the "tête laurée." Only Paris, Strasbourg and Bordeaux participated in this later issue.
Recorded mintage: 2,206,170.
Specification: bronze, 5 g, 25 mm diameter, plain edge, designed by Albert-Desiré Barré (1818-78), the first specimen Ø25 mm, 4.95 g, 6h axis.
Catalog reference: VG 155; KM 797.1, F.117/14.
- Cuhaj, George S., and Thomas Michael, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900, 7th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2012.
- 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.
- Teller, M. Louis, and Victor England, Jr., The Richard Lissner Collection, Lancaster, PA: Classical Numismatic Group, 2014.