1743-Q Billon Sous Marques. Vlack UNLISTED. Rarity-8.

Currency:CAD Category:Coins & Paper Money Start Price:625.00 CAD Estimated At:1,250.00 - 1,500.00 CAD
1743-Q Billon Sous Marques.  Vlack UNLISTED.  Rarity-8.
775.00CAD+ (155.00) buyer's premium + applicable fees & taxes.
This item SOLD at 2019 May 02 @ 20:16UTC-4 : AST/EDT

Buyer’s Premiums will be added on all items as per the Terms & Conditions of the sale. Invoices will be emailed out after The Toronto Coin Expo.

Q – Perpignan Mint - 1743-Q Billon Sous Marques. Vlack UNLISTED. Rarity-8, a UNIQUE specimen, a completely unlisted date, and one of the most important Sous Marques discovered since the publication of the Vlack book! Fine or slightly better, erratically struck on a slightly smaller planchet than usually found, apparently also of a high copper alloy, the piece toned a light brown with some darker areas that appear to be the original silvering; there are a couple light striations on either side which were on the planchet prior to striking. Weaker on the right side, especially so on the reverse where the legend there is lost, while only NOM is lost on the obverse. The legends on the left are stronger, the Q mintmark sharp on the obverse. The date is weak, but the final digit is clearly a 3 and the first two digits can be faintly made out – so 1743 is the only reasonable possibility. This is amazing because Perpignan is known to have struck the Sous in 1739-40, and also reportedly did so in 1738 and 1741 though no examples of those years have been found. It also reported a coinage in 1762, after an absence of over two decades, and despite reporting over 90,000 struck no example of that has ever been seen. Had the final digit on this one had been a 2, that mystery would be solved, but instead it is only deepened since the Perpignan mint did not report any made for 1743; even more confusing is the presence of the hat different on the obverse – this is correct for the 1738-1740 period as it is the mark of Louis II Brodus, but in 1741 the mark was changed to a dove for Claude-Philippe Barthelemy. An examination of the individual letter punches match up with those on other Perpignan issues (including the above coin and the examples in the Vlack collection) which rules out the possibility of this being a contemporary counterfeit – though that would have been neat since none are known to exist from this mint. A plausible explanation would be that Brodus left an unfinished die with his different on it (either without a date or just the first 2-3 digits punched in) and Barthelemy finished the die and added the final digit(s) to the date, but didn’t bother trying to put his mark over that of his predecessor. Why this would have been done in 1743 and not 1741 when there was a reported mintage is unknown – but much of what happened at the Perpignan mint is similarly unknown, including its issuance of the 1717 copper coins. A fascinating piece, one of the highlights of this sale, and a coin that we expect significant bidder interest for!