1964, France (5rd Republic). Beautiful Silver 5 Francs “The Sower” Coin.
Mint years: 1964 Mint place: Paris (A) References: KM-926. Denomination: 5 Francs Condition: A beatiful lustre uncirculated coin with minor toning spots! Weight: 12.01gm Diameter: 29mm Material: Silver
Obverse: Female togate personification of the French Republic (Francia) left, sowing seed. Sun rising in backround. Designer´s signature (O.Roty) below. Legend: REPUBLIQUE FRANCAISE . Reverse: Denomination (5 FRANCS), flanked by privy marks above olive-wreath and date (1964). Legend: LIBERTE . EGALITE . FRATERNITE
This Sower is a very familiar figure to the French: she was featured on the fifty centimes coin and on the one, two and five franc pieces until 2001, before appearing in a stylised version on the ten, twenty and fifty centime coins of the euro. She originally dates back to 1887. This was the year when Roty designed a prize medal commissioned by the Ministry of Agriculture, but the project was not followed through. In 1896, when the Minister of Finance commissioned some new coins, Roty was one of the artists selected. He went back to the Sower of 1887 but transformed his robust peasant into a slim Marianne, wearing the Phrygian cap of Liberty. The traditional profile of the Republic was abandoned in favour of a more active, standing figure.
The French Fourth Republic was the republican government of France between 1946 and 1958, governed by the fourth republican constitution. It was in many ways a revival of the Third Republic, which was in place before World War II, and suffered many of the same problems. France adopted the constitution of the Fourth Republic on 13 October 1946.
The Fourth Republic saw an era of great economic growth in France and the rebuilding of the nation’s social institutions and industry after the war, and played an important part in the development of the process of European integration which changed the continent permanently. Some attempts were made to strengthen the executive branch of government to prevent the unstable situation that had existed before the war, but the instability remained and the Fourth Republic saw frequent changes in government – there were 20 governments in ten years. Additionally, the government proved unable to make effective decisions regarding decolonization. As a result, the Fourth Republic collapsed and what some critics considered to be a de facto coup d'état, subsequently legitimized by a referendum on 5 October 1958, led to the establishment of the Fifth Republic in 1959.