The collection will be sold at two auctions co-organized by London-based Spink
and Taisei Coins Corporation, to be held November 26, 2017, and April 29, 2018, during the Tokyo International Coin Convention in Tokyo.
This collection is a vivid memory of my time at the French Mint, starting when I was just 23 years old. I am thrilled that Spink decided to include it in their upcoming auctions in Tokyo, Lariviere said. I am happy to know that my collection and its provenance will be preserved for future generations thanks to its encapsulation in NGC's protective holders."
Numismatic Guaranty Corporation® (NGC®) has posted an online image gallery of the NGC-certified collection of Hubert Lariviere, the former chief engraver of the Monnaie de Paris.
In 1969, Hubert Lariviere started working at the Monnaie de Paris, the national mint of France. He served as chef du Service de la gravure (chief engraver) from 2003 to 2010, using a horn with waves (the waves an homage to his name Lariviere or the river) as his engravers mark. Located on the Seine between the Eiffel Tower and Notre-Dame Cathedral, the Monnaie de Paris is the oldest continuously operating mint in the world.
The 178 items in the collection date from 1969 to 1997 and many are in nearly pristine condition. The majority are patterns (marked ESSAI or PROVA, alternate words for patterns). More than half of the coins are from France; much of the rest are from nations formerly under French rule, including Algeria, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Djibouti (formerly Afars & Issas), Gabon, Lebanon, Madagascar, Mali, New Hebrides (now Vanuatu) and Tunisia.
An astonishing 41 coins received a grade of 69 from NGC, including four Central African States 1976 ESSAI Nickel 50 Francs, a Lebanon 1980 ESSAI Nickel Livre and a Monaco 1971 ESSAI Nickel 5 Francs. Many of the French coins in the collection celebrate events such as the Louvre bicentennial, Liberation of Paris anniversary and Victory in Europe Day, as well as historical figures such as Charlemagne, Rene Descartes, General Lafayette and Marie Curie.
Most of the coins in the collection are francs, which had been the currency of France for centuries before it gave way to the euro in 1999. Other nations have also used currencies called the franc, and 14 countries in Africa still use the CFA franc.