France 1878-A 50 francs

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Sincona sale 6, lot 1245
This specimen was lot 1245 in Sincona sale 6 (Zurich, May 2012), where it did not sell. The catalog description[1] noted,
"FRANKREICH Troisième République, 1871-1940. 50 Francs 1878, Paris. Kl. Kr. Fast vorzüglich. (France, Third Republic, fifty francs of 1878, Paris mint. Nice extremely fine.)"
Napoleon III was overthrown in 1870 after being goaded into and losing the Franco-Prussian War. After a seige and a civil war fought in Paris, the Third Republic settled down to a bourgeois existence. The gold twenty francs with the revived Génie design was first struck in 1871; the fifty and hundred francs were added in 1878. The fifty francs must have seemed superfluous as only 26,945 were struck over five dates 1878-1904 and today it is the rarest type of the Republic.

Recorded mintage: 5,294.

Specification: 16.13 g, .900 fine gold; this specimen is 16,11 g.

Catalog reference: Gad. 1113, Schl. 425, Fr-591; F.549/1, KM 804.1.


  • Michael, Thomas, and Tracy L. Schmidt, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900, 9th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2019.
  • Friedberg, Arthur L. and Ira S. Friedberg, Gold Coins of the World, From Ancient Times to the Present, 7th ed., Clifton, NJ: Coin and Currency Institute, 2003.
  • 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.
  • [1]Numismatic Coins, Medals, Banknotes & Books: Auction 6, Zurich: SINCONA AG, 2012.

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