Franche-ComtÚ under Charles V
The Franche-ComtÚ region is located between Burgundy and Switzerland. It belonged to the "Kingdom of Burgundy" (Arelat with capital Arles) which formally became part of the Holy Roman Empire in 1033 before it disintegrated. In 1169 this region was raised to the imperial free county of Burgundy (Franche-ComtÚ), with Dole as the capital.
After multiple inheritance in the female line, the free county fell in 1384 to the Valois branch line of Burgundy. They united the Duchy of Burgundy (French fiefdom) with the neighboring Free County of Burgundy (fiefdom of the Holy Roman Empire) and in 4 generations created a large area of dominion up to the North Sea. The last of this line, Charles the Bold, lost his life in the Battle of Nancy in 1477. His heir, Maria of Burgundy, married the Habsburg Maximilian, the grandfather of Charles V. So the Free County of Burgundy came to the Spanish Habsburgs until it was conquered by King Louis XIV in 1678.
Coat of arms since the late 13th century:
Blue field sown with golden clapboard, in it a golden crowned lion.
Carolus 1552, Dole
(= 2 Blancs). AR, ě 18 mm, 1,18 g. PA 5277, pl.120/2; R 5.
Obv.: + Moneta
:BVRGVNDIE:1552 (Comitatus = county)
Coat of arms of the county of Burgundy, above it D for Dole, the mint place.
Crowned bust of the emperor to the left.
Carolus 1556, Dole
(= 2 Blancs). AR, ě 18 mm, 0,98 g. PA 5277var; Numisdole R5b.
◦COMITA◦BVRGVNDIE // Ě+Carolus
The date 1556 now over the arms.
Blanc 1550, Dole
(= half Carolus). AR, ě 16 mm, 0,55g. PA 5278, pl.120/7; R 6.
M◦C◦ - BVR - GVN - ◦1551◦ // +C◦V◦R◦IMP◦C◦BVRGVNDIE
The Carolus and Blanc were minted in Dole since 1550, based entirely on the Carolus and Blanc that Besanšon had been issuing since 1537.
After Charles V's abdication in 1556, his son, King Philip II of Spain, took over the county and in 1561 continued the minting of Carolus and Blancs, now of course with his portrait and his title.
• Jean Rousseau [R] : La monnaie en ComtÚ, 1494-1694 - et l'atelier monÚtaire de Dole. 1994.
• Poey d'Avant [PA] : Monnaies fÚodales de France, Bd.3, S.118-131 & Tf.120. Google online
(3 Bńnde, Paris 1858-1862, Nachdruck 1961).
• Jean Rousseau: La Monnaie en ComtÚ 1494-1694 (et l'atelier monÚtaire de Dole), 1994
• T. Euvrard (www.dole-monnaies-jetons.fr) : monnaies provinciales de Franche-ComtÚ