Five Francs, Coin Type from Switzerland - detailed information

Five Francs, Coin Type from Switzerland (issued 1850 - )
Coin TypeFive Francs

The Five Francs coin is a circulating denomination of the Swiss Franc. Given that Switzerland has four official languages, the Franc has three different names: Franken in German, franc in French and Romansh, and franco in Italian. Initially when federal Swiss coinage was introduced in 1850, all "francs" (including the half franc) were full-bodied silver, while the centimes were either billon (low-grade silver) or base metal.

The first version of the five francs coin featuring a seated figure of Helvetia was designed by Friedrich Fisch and engraved by Antoine Bovy. The reverse shows the value, a numeral 5, and a language-neutral abbreviation of the denomination, Fr. within a wreath whose left part consists of oak branches and the right part of various Alpine flowers while the reverse shows the Seated Helvetia figure, consistent with the other Franc coins of the time - the half franc, one franc and two francs. This version was larger and heavier than current coins (25 grams) and made of 0.900 silver. It was issued between 1850 and 1874 and was initially struck by the Paris Mint and the Brussels Mint, then by the Bern Mint (now Swissmint).

In 1888, the coin was changed to a new design by Karl Schwenzer, with the reverse showing a shield within a wreath, and the obverse featuring a portrait of the symbolic figure Helvetia. Unlike the smaller denominations, its metal was not debased.

This changed again in 1922, to the current design by Paul Burkhard with a re-designed shield on the reverse and the figure of an Alpine herdsman on the obverse. The next transformation of the denomination was in 1931 when the coins were made smaller. The final change was in 1968 when silver content was abandoned, and the circulating earlier types were demonetised on 1st April 1971.

The current Five Franc coins are made of cupro-nickel and weigh 13.2 grams.

Obverse
Switzerland / Five Francs - obverse photo

The first version of the obverse (issued only in 1850, 1851, 1873 and 1874) features a seated figure of Helvetia, the female personification of the Confederation of Switzerland, resting on a plough whose two handles are seen to her right, and some grains; with her left hand she holds a triangular shield resting on the ground which bears the Swiss Cross inside an oval; her right arm is extended toward the left side of the obverse, pointing into the distance. The legend HELVETIA is around above her head. The engraver's name A. BOVY is in small letters to her left, written counter-clockwise (i.e. the letters face the opposite way to the legend).

The second obverse, issued between 1888 and 1916, shows a portrait of Helvetia by Karl Schwenzer. The legend reads CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA; the date is also on the obverse, separated from the legend by a quatrefoil.

The third obverse (issued from 1922 to the present) by Paul Burkhard shows a hooded male figure representing an alpine herdsman (and not William Tell as some people think). The legend CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA is around above.

The engraver's signature, P BVRKHARD INCT. (an abbreviation for the Latin text "Paul Burkhard incidit", meaning "engraved by Paul Burkhard), is below left on the figure's shoulder, incuse counter-clockwise in small letters.

Obverse Inscription CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Reverse
Switzerland / Five Francs - reverse photo

The first version of the reverse (issued only in 1850, 1851, 1873 and 1874) shows the value, a numeral 5, and a language-neutral abbreviation of the denomination, Fr. within a wreath whose left part consists of oak branches and the right part of various Alpine flowers. The mint mark (A for the Paris Mint, B for the Bern Mint or B. for the Brussels Mint) is under the ribbon of the wreath.

The second version of the reverse was issued between 1888 and 1916. This design by Christian B├╝hler featured the Coat of Arms of Switzerland, being a Swiss Cross on a shield, with thin vertical lines in the background as a "heraldic colour" (tincture) signifying red. The shield is within a wreath, the left part of which consists of oak leaves and the right part of laurels; above the shield, a five-pointed star. The value 5 is to the left of the shield, and the denomination - abbreviated to F - is to the right. The mint mark B of the Bern Mint is under the ribbon.

The third and current reverse shows a modified Coat of Arms of Switzerland with a rounded shield and no tincture for the background colour, surrounded by flower wreaths. The value and denomination 5 FR. are above the shield; before 1924, the value was given as 5 Fr. (small "r") with thinner letters. The date is below the shield, and the mint mark is below the date.

Reverse Inscription 5 Fr. [year]
EdgeEdge Inscription
Coin Type: Five Francs - (117) Coins (Page 1 of 2)
Coin NameMintageSymbolLegend
Five Francs 1850 250,000 Helvetia, Seated HELVETIA
Five Francs 1851 250,000 Helvetia, Seated HELVETIA
Five Francs 1873 30,000 Helvetia, Seated HELVETIA
Five Francs 1874 1,596,000 Helvetia, Seated HELVETIA
Five Francs 1888 25,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1888
Five Francs 1889 225,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1889
Five Francs 1890 305,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1890
Five Francs 1891 150,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1891
Five Francs 1892 190,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1892
Five Francs 1894 34,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1894
Five Francs 1895 46,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1895
Five Francs 1896 2,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1896
Five Francs 1900 33,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1900
Five Francs 1904 40,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1904
Five Francs 1907 277,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1907
Five Francs 1908 200,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1908
Five Francs 1909 120,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1909
Five Francs 1912 11,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1912
Five Francs 1916 22,000 Helvetia, Portrait by Karl Schwenzer CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA * 1916
Five Francs 1922 2,400,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1923 11,300,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1924 182,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1925 2,830,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1926 2,000,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1928 24,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1931 3,520,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1932 10,580,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1933 5,900,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1935 3,000,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1936 War Bond 200,000 HELVETIA
Five Francs 1937 645,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1939 2,197,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1939 Battle of Laupen 30,600 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1940 1,601,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1941 Anniversary of Confederation 100,150 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1944 Battle of St. Jakob 101,680 HELVETIA
Five Francs 1948 416,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1948 Constitution 500,400 HELVETIA
Five Francs 1949 407,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1950 482,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1951 1,096,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1952 155,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1953 3,403,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1954 6,600,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1963 Red Cross 623,000 1863 1963
Five Francs 1965 5,021,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1966 9,016,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1967 13,817,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1968 33,871,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1969 8,637,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1970 6,306,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1973 5,002,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1974 6,007,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1974 Constitution Revision 3,709,000 Swiss Cross CONSTITUTIO
Five Francs 1975 4,015,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1975 Year of Historic Preservation 2,560,000 1975 HEREDIO NOSTRO FUTURUM
Five Francs 1976 3,007,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1976 Battle of Murten 1,606,900 MVRATVM 1476 1976
Five Francs 1977 2,009,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1977 Heinrich Pestalozzi 852,260 JOHANN HEINRICH PESTALOZZI
Five Francs 1978 4,411,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1978 Henry Dunant 963,000 HENRY DUNANT
Five Francs 1979 4,011,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1979 Albert Einstein - Portrait 935,000 ALBERT EINSTEIN
Five Francs 1979 Albert Einstein - Formula 937,000 ALBERT EINSTEIN
Five Francs 1980 4,026,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1980 Ferdinand Hodler 1,001,200 FERDINAND HODLER
Five Francs 1981 6,018,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1981 Treaty of Stans 950,260 STANS 1481
Five Francs 1982 5,050,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1982 Gotthard Railway 1,170,110 1882 - 1982 GOTHARDUS
Five Francs 1983 4,033,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1983 Ernest Ansermet 1,087,990 ERNEST ANSERMET 1883-1969
Five Francs 1984 3,953,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1984 Auguste Piccard 1,087,990 A. PICCARD 1884 - 1962
Five Francs 1985 4,050,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1985 European Year of Music 1,240,400 MVSICES ANNVS EVROPAE 1985
Five Francs 1986 7,083,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1986 Battle of Sempach 1,157,800 Swiss Cross 1386 SEMPACH
Five Francs 1987 7,028,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1987 Le Corbusier 1,022,515 LE CORBVSIER MODVLOR 432 698 1130 1887 1965
Five Francs 1988 7,029,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1988 Olympic Movement 1,094,527 (none)
Five Francs 1989 5,031,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1989 Henri Guisan 1,339,012 HENRI GUISAN 1939
Five Francs 1990 1,049,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1990 Gottfried Keller 1,169,412 GOTTFRIED KELLER 1819 - 1890
Five Francs 1991 544,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1992 5,035,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1993 5,023,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1994 12,023,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1995 12,024,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1996 12,023,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1997 9,022,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1998 9,021,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 1999 9,021,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 2000 7,026,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 2001 1,028,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 2002 1,030,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Five Francs 2003 1,028,000 CONFOEDERATIO HELVETICA
Showing 1 to 100 of 117 Coins.
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Five Francs: Photos
ImageDetails
Coin, Switzerland, 5 Francs, 1851
Copyright: NumisCorner.com
Source
Coin, Switzerland, 5 Francs, 1851
Copyright: NumisCorner.com
Source