France L'AN7-D decime

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Jean Elsen sale 119, lot 1390
France AN 7D decime rev JElsen 119-1390.jpg
This specimen was lot 1390 in Jean Elsen sale 119 (Brussels, December 2013), where it sold for 550 euro (about US$890 including buyer's fees). The catalog description[2] noted,
"FRANCE, Directoire (1795-1799), Cu 1 décime, an 7 D, Lyon. Type définitif. Gad-187. Très Beau à Superbe. (France, Directory, 1795-99, copper one decime, year &, Lyon mint, final type. Very fine to extremely fine.)"
The numismatics of the bronze coinage of the First Republic is complex. For the five centimes, the first issue (An 4-5) was 5 g, 23 mm diameter and was immediately rejected by the populace along with the 10 g décime (10 centimes) and the 20 g double décime (20 centimes). During An 5, the government tried again with larger coins, increasing the 5 centimes to 10 g and the décime to 20 g and abandoning the double décime. The revised types met with some success and they were issued in substantial numbers until An 9. Leftover stocks of light weight décimes were overstruck into 5 centimes and double décimes converted into décimes. In all, about 114 million were produced for the type. They circulated until the 1850's and today few are found in Very Fine or better. An XF such as the one shown is unusual.

During An 7, this type was struck at Paris ("A"), Strasbourg ("BB"), Lyon ("D", shown here), Bordeaux ("K") and Lille ("W"). Paris produced the majority. A 7/5 overdate is noted and awarded a substantial premium but the regular date is only slightly scarce.

Recorded mintage: 1,574,072[1].

Specification: bronze, 20 g, 32 mm diameter, "chevronned" edge, designed by Augustin Dupré (1748-1833).

Catalog reference: F.129/20, KM 644.4.


  • Michael, Thomas, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1701-1800, 7th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2016.
  • Gadoury, Victor, Monnaies Françaises, 1789-2011, 20me éd., Monaco: Éditions Victor Gadoury, 2011.
  • [1]Prieur, Michel, and Laurent Schmitt, Le Franc 10: Les Monnaies, Paris: Éditions les Chevau-légers, 2014.
  • [2]Elsen, Philippe, et al., Vente Publique 119, Brussels: Jean Elsen et ses Fils S.A., 2013.

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