France 1986 Statue of Liberty 100th Anniversary Centennial 100 Francs Silver BU Piedfort
List Price: $99.95 - Savings: $30.00
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This low-mintage, double-thick
silver coin commemorates the Statue of Liberty on its 100th anniversary!
sight could be more beautiful and welcoming than Lady Liberty with the
flame of freedom held high aloft? The world-famous Statue of Liberty
has greeted generations of immigrants (and tourists) for over a century
as she stands proudly in New York Harbor, where she remains a physical
the freedoms that the United States represents. This unique,
double-thick silver coin
commemorates the centenary of the Statue of Liberty in 1986.
Appropriately enough, the denomination is 100 francs.
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Obverse The Statue of Liberty
A Note on Piedforts Liberty Enlightening the World
known more commonly as the Statue of Liberty, was given to the United
States by France in 1885 and stands on Liberty Island in the mouth of
the Hudson River as a welcome to all visitors, immigrants, and
returning Americans. The copper statue, dedicated on October 28, 1886,
commemorates the centennial of the United States in 1876 and is a
gesture of friendship between the two nations. The sculptor was
Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi. Gustave Eiffel, the
designer of the Eiffel
Tower, engineered the internal structure. A short biography of
Bartholdi can be found lower on this page.
The statue of Lady Liberty is an allegory, filled with symbolism. She
holds a torch in her right hand, representing the light of freedom, and
a tablet in her left. The tablet
shows the inscription JULY IV MDCCLXXVI - July 4, 1776, the date of the
adoption of the Declaration of Independence. One of her feet stands on
chains, symbolizing the acquired freedom from oppression. The seven
spikes in her crown represent the seven seas and seven continents.
Her height from ground to the top of the torch is 305 feet; this
includes the foundation and the pedestal. The height of the statue
itself, from the top of the base to the torch, is 151 feet. The statue
weighs 204 tons and the pedestal weighs 24,500 tons. Lady Liberty was
built from thin copper plates hammered into wooden forms through a
process known as repoussé. The formed plates were then
onto a steel skeleton. The pedestal is built from stone and Rosendale
natural cement. She was restored through a massive public campaign
between 1984 and 1986, and reopened just in time for her centennial.
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and medals featuring the Statue of Liberty!
France is one of only a very few countries in the world to
ever strike piedforts
or double-thick coins. The increased depth of a piedfort is readily
visible to the naked eye - in this instance, the coin is 5 mm (1/5
inch) thick! As a result, each also has double the silver content of
the standard issue. Most piedforts are generally struck in much smaller
quantities than their regular counterparts - the Statue of Liberty 100
Francs Piedfort has a mintage limit of only 5,000! Well-known in Europe
for decades, piedforts are catching on with collectors in North America
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A simple, bold and yet dynamic portrait of the Statue of Liberty, as
she gazes straight forward as if regarding her viewer. The dates of her
centennial, 1886-1986, and RÉPUBLIQUE FRANÇAISE
The a stylized version of the motto of the French Republic,
presented as part of the Tree of Life motif, capped by a Phrygian or
Liberty Cap. The date of issue and denomination are also indicated.
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Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi, the famous French
was born in Colmar, Alsace in 1834. He studied architecture in Colmar
and then went to Paris to further his studies in architecture as well
as painting. Bartholdi would go on to become one of the most celebrated
sculptors of the 19th century, famous both in Europe and in North
America. He would specialize in large-scale sculptures that serve as
The work for which he is most famous is the Statue of Liberty, donated
by the government of France in 1886 to the United States. The face of
the Statue of Liberty is said to be that of Bartholdi’s
Before starting his commission, he traveled to the United States to
personally select New York Harbor as the site for the statue. In 1879
Bartholdi was awarded design patent U.S. Patent D11,023 for the Statue
of Liberty. This patent covered the sale of small copies of the
statute. Proceeds from the sale of the statues helped raise money to
build the full statue.
His largest European work, The Lion of Belfort, at Belfort, France, is
one of his most popular and best-known. A massive sculpture of a lion,
it is carved into the side of a mountain and honors the defense of
Belfort during the Franco-Prussian War. Bartholdi died of tuberculosis
in Paris on October 4, 1904 and is buried in that
city's Montparnasse Cemetery.
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The Lion of Belfort
Lion of Belfort is a huge stone sculpture Belfort, France by
Frédéric Bartholdi, designer of the Statue of
was finished in 1880 and is carved entirely of pink sandstone. The
blocks from which it's made were individually sculpted then moved to
its location beneath Belfort castle to be assembled. The sculpture is
more than 70 feet long and 35 feet high and dominates the local
landscape. Instead of facing Prussia to the east as was intended, it
was turned the other way because of German objections.
The lion symbolizes the heroic resistance of Belfort during a 103 days
long Prussian siege (from December 1870 to February 1871). The city,
under assault from 40,000 Prussians, was defended by only 17,000 men
(only 3,500 of whom were enlisted in the military) lead by Colonel
Denfert-Rochereau. Copies of the statue stand in the center of Place
Denfert-Rochereau in Paris, and in the Montreal Botanical Gardens.
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