Écu – Wikipedia

character of french coin
The term écu ( french pronunciation : ​ [ eky ] ) may refer to one of several french coins. [ 1 ] The first écu was a gold mint ( the écu d’or ) minted during the predominate of Louis IX of France, in 1266. The value of the écu varied well over time, and eloquent coins ( known as écu d’argent ) were besides introduced. Écu ( from Latin scutum ) means shield, and the mint was so called because its invention included the coat of arms of France. The bible is related to Catalan escut, italian scudo or portuguese castilian escudo. In English, the écu was often referred to as crown. [ 2 ]

history [edit ]

origin [edit ]

When Louis IX took the throne, France still used small flatware deniers, which had circulated since the time of Charlemagne to the exclusion of larger ash grey or aureate coins. Over the years, french kings had granted numerous nobles and bishops the right to strike coins and their “ feudal ” coinages competed with the imperial neologism. Venice and Florence had already shown that there was demand for larger silver medal and gold coins and in 1266 Louis IX sought an advantage for the royal coinage by expanding it in these areas. [ 3 ] His amber écu d’or showed a carapace strew with fleur-de-lis, which was the coat of arms of the kings of France at the time. These coins were valued as if gold was deserving alone 10 times a a lot as silver medal, an unrealistic ratio which Edward III of England had unsuccessfully tried to use. It failed again, Louis IX ‘s flatware coins were a great success but his gold was not accepted at this rate and his successor discontinued aureate neologism. [ 4 ]

Écu d’or [edit ]

écu a la chaise longue of Philip VI Philip IV reintroduced amber neologism to France in 1296 and began a succession of extravagantly designed but quickly changing types. These coins were broadly named for their obverse design, and the écu à la chaise which Philip VI introduced in 1337 showed a shield with the coating of arms of the kings of France beside the seat king. Philip VI spent huge quantities of these coins subsidizing his allies in the Netherlands at the beginning of the Hundred Years ‘ War, and this coin was widely copied in the Netherlands. [ 5 ]
écu à la couronne of Charles VI Charles VI ended the practice of frequently changing amber coin designs ( but not that of tampering with their weight and prize ) with his écu à la couronne in 1385. This is again named after the harbor on the obverse, which now has a crown above it and the modern coating of arms of the kings of France with three iris. Charles VI ‘s don had scored major gains against the english but had passed the cost on to his children. The government of the child Charles VI abandoned his forefather ‘s sound money policy by replacing his gold franc à cheval. The new écu à la couronne weighed less than the franc but its value was increased from one livre, i.e. 20 sou, for the franc to 22 sou 6 deniers ( i.e. 22.5 sou ) for the écu. not only was this a devaluation, but while the franc had been identified with its evaluation of one livre the evaluation of the écu à la couronne was capable to manipulation. [ 6 ]
écu gold soleil of Louis XII In 1475, Louis XI created a discrepancy of the écu à la couronne called an écu au soleil because the Sun now appeared above the shield. The process of devaluation continued. In 1515 the écu au soleil was valued at 36¾ sou, but this was increased to 45 sou by 1547 even though its weight and fineness had been decreased in 1519. [ 7 ] The écu design continued, basically unaltered, on french gold coins until 1640 when the louis five hundred ’ or replaced it. [ 8 ] In the second half of the 1500s gold and silver imported from spanish America impacted the french economy, but the king of France was not getting a lot of the fresh wealth. He responded by revaluing the écu d’or in stages from 45 sou in 1547 to 60 sou, i.e. 3 livres tournois, in 1577. This exacerbated the inflation caused by the increase in the provision of gold and flatware, and the Estates General, which met at Blois in 1576, added to the public atmospheric pressure to stop currentness handling.

1641 Ecu d'Or, reign of Louis XIII 1641 Ecu d’Or, reign of Louis XIII
1644 quarter écu of Louis XIV In 1577, Henri III agreed to stabilize the écu d’or at 3 livres tournois and to adopt a new monetary organization with prices quoted in écus. As separate of this system, he introduced quarter and one-eighth écu coins struck in silver. The types of quarter and one-eighth écus d’argent paralleled those of the écu d’or, with the royal arms on the obverse and a cross on the inverse. For the foremost time in french history, these coins had a mark of value, with IIII or VIII placed on either side of the shield. [ 9 ] Royal coins struck at mints in Navarre and Béarn added local heraldry to the fleur-de-lis of France. Feudal coinages at Bouillon and Sedan, Château-Renaud, and Rethel besides struck quarter écus, with their own arms replacing the royal arms. [ 10 ] By the seventeenth hundred this écu d’or would rise in value from 3 to more than 5 livres, while the hammer silver quarter écu struck until 1646 would rise in value from 15 sols to 1 livre. [ 11 ]

Silver Louis or écu of 1641 [edit ]

Louis d’argent of Louis XIII, 1642 This placid did not give France a coin which could compete with the thalers which were popular in Germany. furthermore, french coins were placid made by hand, so precious metallic could be illegally shaved from the edges of the coins before passing them on. ultimately, the écu d’or was made of 23 carat amber, which was not the international standard. Louis XIII fixed all this. He installed neologism making machinery in the Paris mint and replaced the écu d’or with the Louis d’or in 1640. In 1641 he introduced a thaler-sized argent coin primitively called a Louis d’argent, issued at 9 to a french Mark of silver, 11/12 very well ( 24.93 thousand very well silver ), and valued at three livres tournois – the lapp value in which the écu d’or was stabilized in 1577. This new 3-livres coin besides came to be called an écu .

Silver écu of 1726 [edit ]

1792 half écu of Louis XVI From 1690 to 1725 rates were unstable, resulting in the discontinuance of the Louis d’argent in prefer of the fresh silver écu. In 1726 it was first issued at publish 8.3 to a french Mark of silver, 11/12 ticket ( or 27.03 thousand fine argent ), and valued at six livres tournois. The silver écu was further broken down into a 1⁄8 measure coin ( huitième d’écu ), a 1⁄4 respect coin ( the quart d’écu ) and a 1⁄2 measure coin ( the demi-écu ). All had the king ‘s raid on the obverse and the royal coat of arms on the revoke. This silver écu was known as the laubthaler in Germany. It circulated in Southern Germany at 2.8 confederacy german guilder. [ 12 ] In Switzerland it was worth four bern livres or four francs of the Helvetic Republic. [ 13 ] For more on the 17th-18th centuries currency organization, see Louis d’or, livre tournois and italian scudo.

french Revolution [edit ]

The argent écu disappeared during the french Revolution and was swapped for french francs at the rate of 6 livres = 6/1.0125 or 5.93 francs. At 4.5 thousand fine ash grey per franc this entail each écu contained entirely 26.66 g fine silver. But the 5-franc eloquent coins minted throughout the nineteenth hundred were fair a sequel of the old écus, and were often still called écu by french people. The écu, as it existed immediately before the french Revolution, was approximately equivalent ( in terms of purchasing office ) to 24 euro or 30 U.S. dollars in 2017. [ citation needed ]

References in novels [edit ]

The Count of Monte Cristo ( Penguin Classics – by Alexandre Dumas -translated by Robin Buss ) “ The speculators were the ample by eight hundred thousand écus. ” ( Page 179 )

References [edit ]

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