The Paris Mint (Monnaie de Paris) has issued coins and medals since the early 1500's. The following is a list of edge marks, which will help in dating items issued by the Paris Mint.
With few exceptions, all French Mint medals were issued at the Paris Mint, until recent years. The Paris mintmark is actually the mark, or différent, of the Director de l'Administration des Monnaies. The old Royal mint for the striking of medals was combined with the Administration des Monnaies by Louis Philippe in an ordinace of March 24, 1832. Since January 1, 1880, the Mint has operated under the authority of the Minister of Finance.
Some Paris Mint medals also bear the Chief Engraver's Marks:
Starting with the use of the second EDGE mark, 1841-42, the name of the metal (in French) of the medal, was also stamped on the edge. Medals will be found on which an unscrupulous attempt has been made to file off these marks and convert a restrike into an original. Such mutilation is seldom successfull, being especially obvious on the reeded edges of jetons, which have been copiously restruck. "Essai" is French for pattern or trial.
NOTE: In some cases, marks were used after the stated dates. The above information was taken from Medals Relating to Medicine and Allied Sciences in the Numismatic Collection of The Johns Hopkins University, by Sara Elizabeth Freeman. Other information is from Medallic Portraits of Washington, by Rulau/Fuld. Additional information by D. Wayne Johnson.
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