France L'AN 10-L 5 francs

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from Stack's Bowers 2016 ANA sale, lot 20445
France SB816-20445r.jpg

This specimen was lot 20445 in Stack's Bowers ANA sale (Anaheim, CA, August 2016), where it sold for $564. The catalog description[2] noted, "FRANCE. 5 Franc, L'AN 10-L (1801-02). Bayonne Mint. PCGS AU-55 Secure Holder. Lion head privy mark. CONDITION RARITY. Seldom ever found this nice, with a trace of wear across the highest points and with flashy original lustrous surfaces throughout." This specimen shown was struck at the Bayonne mint during the French Consulate (1799-1804) and was meant to replace the écu of the ancien régime after the execution of king Louis XVI. The Gregorian calendar was replaced by the revolutionary calendar. Year 9, shown here, comprised September 1800 thru September 1801. This "Hercules" type was struck until year 11 (1802-03) from numerous mints, tho only Paris is known for year 4. Le Franc[1] has reanalyzed the type, assigning it catalog numbers 287 thru 300, depending on the position of the obverse legend ("UNION ET FORCE"), the details of the oak wreath on the reverse and so forth. As each die was hand made, the varieties are as numerous as those of United States bust half dollars or early large cents. Overdates and repunched mintmarks and privy marks are common. The type was produced in the millions and is not rare in low grades but the price ascends rapidly with grade.

Recorded mintage: 165,082 (a better date).

Specification: 25 g, .900 fine silver, edge lettered GARANTIE NATIONALE, designed by Augustin Dupré (1748-1833).

Catalog reference: Dav-81, F.287/68; KM-639.6; Dav-1337; Gad-563.


  • Cuhaj, George S., and Thomas Michael, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900, 7th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2012.
  • [1]Prieur, Michel, and Laurent Schmitt, Le Franc IX: Les Monnaies, Paris: Éditions les Chevau-légers, 2012.
  • [2]Ponterio, Richard, The August 2016 Anaheim ANA Auction: Ancient Coins, World Coins & Paper Money, Santa Ana, CA: Stack's Bowers LLC, 2016.

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