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French Gold 20 Franc, BU
“Lucky Angel” design (Minted 1871-1898)
Of all the classic European gold coins we handle, the French 20 Franc "Angels" in choice Brilliant Uncirculated (BU) condition are our favorite. Beautiful and historic with a fascinating legend behind them, Angels are a superlative choice for European gold coin collectors and gold bullion investors alike.
Minted from 1871 to 1898, Angels are also one of the only Pre-1900 dated European gold coins trading at anywhere near their gold value. Angels in Brilliant Uncirculated condition are five to ten times more scarce than later date French 20 Franc Roosters and Swiss 20 Franc Helvetias, yet they sell today for close to the same price, making them an excellent way to buy gold!
The legend of the Lucky Angel
The magnificent “Guardian Angel” design on the obverse was originally created during the French Revolution by Augustine Dupré. In 1871, the design was resurrected by the Third Republic for the French gold 20-franc coin.
Almost from the beginning, gold Angels were regarded as lucky charms. Their legend began during the Reign of Terror in the mid-1790s, when the coin’s designer, Augustus Dupré, claimed to have been saved from the guillotine by the lucky Angel coin in his pocket.
French pilots in World War I rarely took flight without a gold Angel coin in their kit, believing it would protect them from the Red Baron and his aces. During World War II, the chief of Hitler’s Luftwaffe, Hermann Goering, became obsessed with these French Angel coins. Confiscating all he could find, he presented them to ace German fighter pilots as rewards for every fifth Allied plane shot down.
Recently, a few small caches of Angels have come to light in Europe, perhaps left over from the war. Unavailable for more than half a century, these gold coins are a true gift from the past and retain all of their legendary desirability and fascination.
French Gold 20 Francs, “Lucky Angels”
Dates and mints our choice.
|Gold content||0.1867 troy oz.|
|Size||21 mm diameter|
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