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1 franc FRANCE (1995) Institut de France

1 franc 1995 Institut de France - coins of France
1 franc 1995 Institut de France - obverse to reverse alignment
diameter: weight: thickness: alloy:
24.0 mm 6.0 g 1.8 mm Ni98
in the coin centre the dome of Institut de France divides face value: 1 / F (FRANC), along the top edge in two lines: • RÉPUBLIQUE FRANÇAISE • / INSTITUT DE FRANCE (French Republic, Institut de France); on the bottom year of issue 1995
in the coin centre inside a rectangle burning fasces lictoriae, around four sides of rectangle inscription: INSTITVT / NATIONAL / DES SCIENCES / ET ARTS (National Institute of Science and Arts); on the sides and above laurel branches; on the bottom date: 1795; along the bottom edge motto of France: LIBERTÉ - ÉGALITÉ - FRATERNITÉ (liberty, equality, fraternity)
issue date:
???  no data
withdrawal date:
18 II 2002
Raymond Corbin (initials R.C. divided by the institute's dome on the bottom of the obverse)
Paris Mint mark La Monnaie de Paris (The Paris Mint), Pessac (mint mark before year 1795 in the reverse, after year 1795 privy mark of mint's director Pierre Rodier - bee)
1995 4 976 011
mint marks:
Privy marks of the general engravers of the Mint of Paris, which can be found on French coins produced after 1944:
Lucien Bazor 1931-1958 privy mark of the engraver of the Paris Mint wing
Raymond Joly 1958-1974 privy mark of the engraver of the Paris Mint owl
Emile Rousseau 1974-1994 privy mark of the engraver of the Paris Mint dolphin
Pierre Rodier 1994-2000 privy mark of the engraver of the Paris Mint bee
Gérard Buquoy 2001-2002 privy mark of the engraver of the Paris Mint horseshoe
Serge Levet 2003 privy mark of the engraver of the Paris Mint heart
Hubert Larivière 2004-2010 privy mark of the engraver of the Paris Mint horn
Yves Sampo from 2011 privy mark of the engraver of the Paris Mint rosette
interesting facts:
The commemorative coin of 1 franc from 1995 commemorates the 200th anniversary of the Institut de France. This French scientific society was founded on October 25, 1795 and brings together five academies (académies), of which the most famous and oldest is the French Academy. The seat of the Institute is located on the southern bank of Seine vis-à-vis the Louvre. Both buildings are connected by the famous bridge Pont des Arts. Below a picture of the dome of Institut de France.

dome of the Institut de France
photo licence: CC-BY-SA 3.0

Fasces lictoriae was a symbol of power in the Roman Empire. Lictors were leading procession of rulers and officials carrying in hands the rods and an ax tied together with a strap. Amount of rods was related to the position in the political hierarchy. The symbolism of fasces was adapted by the Republicans and the fasces is today placed in French Coat of Arms. The word fasces gave the name to a political system - fascism.

Roman lictor carrying fasces.

Roman lictor
photo licence: CC-BY-SA 3.0

The Paris Mint (La Monnaie de Paris) dating back to the 6th century is the oldest French institution, and some would say - oldest institution in the world. The mint office is located in the center of Paris in a complex called Hotel des Monnaies, which was opened on December 20, 1775. A cornucopia is the symbol placed on any coin minted by the Paris Mint from January 1, 1880. The second character visible on coins was a symbol of the general engraver (Graveur general). The tradition of this job dates back to 1547 when Henry II of Valois appointed a general engraver as the only person authorized to create the king's portrait. Only the design prepared by the general engraver could have been copied to the coins stamps in national mints. Starting from 2001, the heads of engravers workshop in the Paris Mint do not hold this traditional title anymore, but their privy marks still appear on French coins next to the mint mark.

The name of the French mint - La Monnaie de Paris - suggests that the plant producing coins is located in the French capital. This is however, only the company name and factories were placed in various French cities. At the moment, the only place producing coins of France (and of some other countries) is Pessac near Bordeaux.
last update: 20 XI 2013

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