AR Denier Tournois (0.87 g, 18mm, 6).

      Mint: Tours mint.
      Struck: Uncertain.
      Obv: + PhILIPPVS + REX
                Cross pattée.
      Rev: + TVRONVS CIVIS
                Châtel tournois.
      Mm: None.
      Ref: Cf. Duplessy 278; Lafaurie -; Ciani -; Roberts 2422.

Notes: Philippe VI was the son of Charles of Valois and grandson of King Philippe III. He succeeded his cousin Charles IV (the last Capetian king), invoking the Salic law to set aside both Charles's daughter and King Edward III of England, the son of Charles's sister. He was the first French king of the house of Valois. By the victory of Cassel, Philippe reinstated the count of Flanders, whom he supported against the rebellious Flemings. After 1337, Philippe's reign was dominated by the opening phases of the Hundred Years War with England. In 1340 the French fleet was destroyed at Sluis. The following year Philippe intervened in the succession conflict in Bretagne on behalf of his nephew Charles of Blois; Edward III landed in Bretagne to aid Charles's rival, John of Montfort. Philippe and Edward signed a three-year truce in 1343, but it lasted only two years. In 1346 Edward invaded Normandy and defeated Philippe at Crécy. The following year the English captured Calais, which they held for nearly two centuries. To finance the war Philippe resorted to extraordinary sources of revenue, including the sale of privileges to provincial assemblies, a general salt tax (gabelle), loans, and the debasement of the coinage. Late in his reign France was ravaged by the Black Death. Philippe added Montpellier and the Dauphiné to the royal domain. His son, Jean II, succeeded him.

The exact attribution of this coin is problematic. Deniers Tournois of these types and legends are known for both Philippe IV and Philippe VI. Elements characterizing both of their types are present; the châtel has no disk at its summit, like Philippe IV's, but also has no ornaments, as Philippe VI's. The lack of ornaments is completely unknown before Philippe VI, so is more persuasive an indicator of whose reign this coin is from. Also, the appearance of a cross as a break in the obverse legend is only known on those of Philippe VI. An unlikely, but possible, combination of Philippe IV and VI's varieties indicate this is an issue of Philippe V, for whom no deniers tournois are known? The style of the lettering is unusual for all kings, though, as is the lack of any breaks in the reverse legend. With the lack of detailed studies of this denomination during these reigns, it is only possible to attribute this coin on the preponderance of the known coinage, which indicate Philippe VI (perhaps a very early, transitional issue?).