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The French 20 franc Ceres gold coin was issued between 1849 and 1851.
The obverse portrays the motif of Ceres, the Roman goddess of agriculture. Surrounding the motif is the text “REPUBLIQUE FRANCAISE”. Above the motif is a six-sided star, and to the left of the motif is the hand of Justice, or fasces lictoriae, and to the right is a laurel branch. Under the motif is the signature of the master engraver “L.MERLEY.F”.
The reverse contains the denomination of 20 FRANCS surrounded by a laurel and the text “LIBERTE EGALITE FRATERNITE”, which translated as “Liberty, Equality, Fraternity”. Under the laurel are the mark of the mint and the year of issue.
Ceres depicted on the French 20 franc gold coin
France in the 19th century was often troubled by domestic political instability. In 1848 she went through the February Revolution which led to the overthrow of the ruling King Louis Philippe, and Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte, nephew and heir of Napoleon I, was elected as president of the new French Republic. The new French Ceres 20 franc gold coin was introduced during Louis Bonaparte’s second year in power and was subsequently minted until 1851. Surprisingly, the new gold franc coin did not picture an effigy of the ruler himself, which had been the case with the previous 20 franc gold coins, but rather depicted the motif of Ceres, the Roman goddess of agriculture. The French 20 franc Ceres gold coin was predominately struck at the Paris Mint.
|French 20 Francs Ceres Gold Coin||Gold weight|
|Weight||Nominal||Diameter in mm||Sample||Weight in g||Grams|
|6.45 g||20 franc||21||21.6 carats||6.4516||5.80644|