Description

François-Marie Arouet (21 November 1694 – 30 May 1778), known by his pen name Voltaire, was a French Enlightenment writer, historian, and philosopher famous for his wit, his attacks on the established Catholic Church, and his advocacy of freedom of religion, freedom of expression, and separation of church and state.

Voltaire was a versatile writer, producing works in almost every literary form, including plays, poems, novels, essays, and historical and scientific works. He wrote more than 20,000 letters and more than 2,000 books and pamphlets. He was an outspoken advocate of several liberties, despite the risk this placed him in under the strict censorship laws of the time. As a satirical polemicist, he frequently made use of his works to criticize intolerance, religious dogma, and the French institutions of his day.

Obverse

Portrait facing outwards to right, lettering and years surrounding.

Designer: Jean Antoine Houdon.

· RÉPUBLIQUE FRANÇAISE ·
1694 VOLTAIRE 1778

Reverse

Quill divides the Panthéon and date from denomination.

The Panthéon is a building in the Latin Quarter in Paris. It was originally built as a church dedicated to St. Genevieve and to house the reliquary châsse containing her relics but, after many changes, now functions as a secular mausoleum containing the remains of distinguished French citizens. It is an early example of neoclassicism, with a façade modeled on the Pantheon in Rome, surmounted by a dome that owes some of its character to Bramante's "Tempietto". Located in the 5th arrondissement on the Montagne Sainte-Geneviève, the Panthéon looks out over all of Paris. Designer Jacques-Germain Soufflot had the intention of combining the lightness and brightness of the Gothic cathedral with classical principles, but its role as a mausoleum required the great Gothic windows to be blocked.

Privy mark of mint's director: Bee - Pierre Rodier (1994-2000).

Mint mark: Cornucopia, horn of plenty (Paris Mint).

LIBERTÉ • ÉGALITÉ • FRATERNITÉ
1994
5F
Voltaire

Edge

5 Francs

KM# 1063 Gadoury# 775 Schön# 337
Characteristics
Type Commemorative Issue (Circulating)
Material Nickel
Weight 10 g
Diameter 29 mm
Thickness 2 mm
Shape round
Alignment Coin
Mint
Paris Mint (A)

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