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The first French paper money was issued in 1701 and was denominated in livres tournois. However, the notes did not hold their value relative to silver due to massive overGÇôproduction. The Banque Royale (the last issuer of these early notes) crashed in 1720, rendering the banknotes worthless (see John Law (economist) for more on this system). In 1726, under Louis XV's minister http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cardinal_Fleury Cardinal Fleury, a system of monetary stability was put in place. Eight ounces (a mark) of gold was worth 740 livres, 9 sols; 8 ounces of silver was worth 51 livres, 2 sols, 3 deniers. This lead to a strict conversion rate between gold and silver (14.487 to 1) and established the values of the coins in circulation in France at:
demi-louis d'or) and a two-Louis coin (the
double louis d'or) (12 and 48 livres).
A coin of value 1 livre was not, however, minted.
Paper money was reintroduced by the Caisse d'Escompte in 1776, denominated in livres. These were issued until 1793, alongside
assignats from 1789. Assignats were backed (in theory) by government-held land. Like the issues of the Banque Royale, their value plummeted.
The last coins and notes of the livre currency system were issued in the Year II of the Republic (1794). In 1795, the franc was introduced, worth 1 livres 3 deniers.«
1 English Pound Sterling = 24 livres
1 livre (or pound) = 20 sols (or shillings)
1 sol (or shilling) = 12 deniers (or pennies)
|Gold||double louis d'or||=||48 livres||L2 1s. 11d.|
|Gold||Louis d'or||=||24 livres||L1 0s. 12d.|
|Gold||demi-louis d'or||=||12 livres||10s. 6d.|
|Silver||ècu||=||6 livres||5s. 2d.|
|Silver||1/2 ècu||=||60 sols||2s. 7d.|
|Silver||1/4 ècu||=||30 sols||1s. 3d.|
|Silver||1/8 ècu||=||15 sols||7d.|
|Copper||2 sols||=||24 deniers||1d.|
|Copper||1 sols||=||12 deniers|
|Copper||1 liard||=||3 deniers|