World Coins

French Colonial coin has ties to three countries

A silver 5-sol coin for Nouvelle France is of interest to collectors of French, Canadian and United States coins, because it was made in the first country for use in colonial lands that became the latter two countries.

Images courtesy of Heritage Auctions.

Few coins have such an impact in economic history as to be celebrated by collectors from three different countries.

The silver 5-sol coin of French King Louis XIV is one such coin, with interest to collectors from France, Canada and the United States of America.

An example of the coin, graded About Uncirculated 53 by Professional Coin Grading Service, is available in Heritage Auctions’ Sept. 7 and 8 sale in Long Beach, California.

The 1670-A coin was struck at the Paris Mint for use in Nouvelle France, which then included Acadia, Louisiana, and Canada.

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The cataloger describes the coin: “A true crossover coin for US-based collectors, this type is listed in both world coin catalogs of the French Colonial series as well as the Red Book for US collectors and Charlton for Canadian enthusiasts.”

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This type is differentiated from the 1/12 ecu minted for circulation in France by bearing the reverse legend GLORIAM REGNI TVI DICENTI rather than the standard French coin’s SIT NOMEN DOMINI BENEDICTVM.

The example in the auction is a “handsomely toned example of this rare type ... with deep gray giving way to flashes of iridescence,” the auction house said.

It has an estimate of $5,000 to $7,000.

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