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Story of Jacques Coeur

31 Jul 2021  Sat

Jacques Coeur was a wealthy and powerful French merchant, who served as a councillor to King Charles VII of France. His career remains a significant example of the spirit of enterprise and the social progress among the merchant classes at the beginning of the period of the rise of France after the Hundred Years’ War.

In 1436, Coeur was summoned to Paris by Charles VII and made master of the mint. This post was of great importance and the duties onerous. The country was deluged with base monies from three reigns, charged with superscriptions both French and English, and Charles was determined to make sweeping reforms. In this design he was ably seconded by the merchant, who, in fact, inspired or prepared all the ordinances concerning the coinage of France issued between 1435 and 1451. In 1438, he was made steward of the royal expenditure; in 1441 he and his family were ennobled by letters patent. He chose the motto A villains cuers riens impossible, "To a valiant heart, nothing is impossible".

He initiated regular trade routes between France and the Levant. His memory retains iconic status in Bourges, where he built a palatial house that is preserved to this day.

Here is an image of France 50 Francs featuring the portrait of Jacques Coeur.

Image Source: Wikipedia.org

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