France L'AN 7-K 5 francs
This specimen was lot 322 in Classical Numismatic Group's sale of the Lissner Collection (Chicago, August 2014), where it sold for $5,445. The catalog description noted, "FRANCE, Premier République. Directoire. 1795-1799. AR 5 Francs. Bordeaux mint; différents: Artemis and lamp. Augustin Dupré, engraver general. Laurent-Baptiste Lhoste, director. Dated L’An 7 K (AD 1798/9). In NGC encapsulation graded MS 63. Superbly toned choice uncirculated. Fantastic radiant multicolored patina. Wonderful early “Hercules” 5 Franc of the New Republic. Purchased from B. A. Seaby, January 1972." This specimen shown was struck at the Paris 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 7, shown here, comprised September 1798 thru September 1799. This "Hercules" type was struck until year 11 (1802-03) from numerous mints, tho only Paris is known for year 4. Le Franc 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: 63,656, a slightly better date.
Specification: 25 g, .900 fine silver, edge lettered GARANTIE NATIONALE, designed by Augustin Dupré (1748-1833). This specimen is Ø38 mm, 24.91 g, 6h axis.
Catalog reference: VG 563; KM 639.5, F.287/30 (6 vars.), Dav-81.
- Cuhaj, George S., and Thomas Michael, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1901-2000, 42nd ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2014.
- Prieur, Michel, and Laurent Schmitt, Le Franc 10: Les Monnaies. Paris: Éditions les Chevau-légers, 2014.
- Gadoury, Victor, Monnaies Françaises, 1789-2011, 20me éd., Monaco: Éditions Victor Gadoury, 2011.
- Teller, M. Louis, and Victor England, Jr., The Richard Lissner Collection, Lancaster, PA: Classical Numismatic Group, 2014.