1764, Augsburg (Free City), Francis I (Stephen). Large Silver Thaler Coin. XF-AU!
Mint year: 1764
Die Cutter: Jonas Peter Thebaud (F.H.)
Reference: Davenport 1929, Forster 640, KM-183.
Condition: Minor scratches, otherwise a nice XF-AU!
Mint Officials: Frings (mint warden), Johann Christian Holeisen (F-A-H).
Mint Place: Augsburg (as free City within the Holy Roman Empire).
Obverse: Wreathed, armoured and draped bust of Francis I right.
Legend: FRANCISCUS . I . D:G . ROM . IMP . SEMP . AUG .
Reverse: Crown above double headed imperial eagle with arms of Augsburg (pine column) at chest. Date (1764) and mint master`s initials (F.-H.), split by mint letter (A) below.
Legend: AUGUSTA VINDELICOR : AD NORM : CONVENTIO :
Exergue: 17 F (A) H 64
Augsburg is an independent city in the south-west of Bavaria. The College town is home of the Regierungsbezirk Schwaben and also of the Bezirk Schwaben and the Landkreis Augsburg. In 1906 Augsburg became a Großstadt (city), and is currently the third-largest city in Bavaria with more than 264,000 citizens. Only Munich and Nuremberg are larger.
The name of the city dated from the Roman settlement Augusta Vindelicorum. The city was founded by the Roman emperor Augustus 15 BC as a castra. Therefore the “Fuggerstadt” is the second oldest city in Germany after Trier.
In 1530 the Augsburg Confession was presented to the Holy Roman Emperor at the Diet of Augsburg. Following the Peace of Augsburg in 1555, after which the rights of religious minorities in imperial cities were to be protected, a mixed Catholic–Protestant city council presided over a majority Protestant population; see Paritätische Reichsstadt (German). Until the Thirty Years' War (1618–1648), religious peace in the city was largely maintained despite increasing confessional tensions. In 1629, Ferdinand II issued the Edict of Restitution resulting in the installation of an entirely Catholic city government that radically curtailed the rights of local Protestants. This persisted until April 1632, when the Swedish army of Gustavus Adolphus took the city without resistance. Just over two years later, the Swedish army was routed at nearby Nördlingen, and by October 1634 Catholic troops had surrounded Augsburg. The Swedish garrison refused to surrender and a disastrous siege ensued through the winter of 1634–5, during which thousands died of hunger and disease.
These difficulties, together with the discovery of America, and of the route to India by the Cape, conspired to destroy the town’s prosperity.
Francis I (Francis Stephen; 8 December 1708 – 18 August 1765) was Holy Roman Emperor and Grand Duke of Tuscany, though his wife effectively executed the real power of those positions. With his wife, Maria Theresa, he was the founder of the Habsburg-Lorraine dynasty.
He was born in Nancy, Lorraine (now in France), the oldest surviving son of Leopold Joseph, duke of Lorraine, and his wife Elizabeth Charlotte, daughter of Philippe I, duc d’Orléans and Elizabeth Charlotte, Princess Palatine. He was connected with the Habsburgs through his grandmother Eleanore, daughter of Emperor Ferdinand III, and wife of Charles Leopold of Lorraine, his grandfather.
Emperor Charles VI favored the family, who, besides being his cousins, had served the house of Austria with distinction. He had designed to marry his daughter Maria Theresa to Francis' older brother Clement. On Clement’s death, Charles adopted the younger brother as his future son-in-law. Francis was brought up in Vienna with Maria Theresa on the understanding that they were to be married, and a real affection arose between them.
At the age of 15, when he was brought to Vienna, he was established in the Silesian Duchy of Cieszyn, which had been mediatized and granted to his father by the emperor in 1722. He succeeded his father as Duke of Lorraine in 1729, but the emperor, at the end of the War of the Polish Succession, agreed to compensate the French candidate Stanislaus Leszczynski for the loss of his crown in 1735 and persuaded Francis to exchange Lorraine for the Grand Duchy of Tuscany.
On 12 February 1736 Francis and Maria Theresa were married, and they went for a short time to Florence, when he succeeded to the grand duchy on the death of Gian Gastone de' Medici, the last of the ruling house of Medici. His wife secured in the Treaty of Füssen his election to the Empire on 13 September 1745, in succession to Charles VII, and she made him co-regent of her hereditary dominions.
Francis was well content to leave the wielding of power to his able wife. He had a natural fund of good sense and some business capacity and was a useful assistant to Maria Theresa in the laborious task of governing the complicated Austrian dominions, but his functions appear to have been primarily secretarial. He also took a great interest in the natural sciences. He was a member of the Freemasons.
Francis was quite the philanderer and was known for his many indiscreet affairs, notably one with Princess Auersperg, who was thirty years his junior. This particular affair has been remarked upon the letters and journals of visitors to the court and his children.
He died suddenly in his carriage while returning from the opera at Innsbruck on 18 August 1765. He is buried in tomb number 55 in the Imperial Crypt in Vienna.
Maria Theresa and Francis I had sixteen children--their youngest daughter was the future queen consort of France, Marie Antoinette (1755-1793). He was officially succeeded by his eldest son Joseph II although the real power remained with his wife. Another son was the Emperor Leopold II.