100810 | FRANCE. Rouen. Freemasons silver Medal.
100810 | FRANCE. Rouen. Freemasons silver Medal. Issued circa 1807-1832. The Loge de la Parfaite Egalité (32mm, 12.35 g, 12h).
Two skeletons—one crowned and holding scepter, the other holding crozier and level—standing facing one another; altar surmounted by open book between them; radiant tetragrammaton above; to left and right, pillars of the First Temple (Solomon's Temple), marked J and B (for Boaz and Jachin); at their bases, compass and carpenter's square / LOGE DE LA PARFAITE EGALITÉ O DE ROUEN, Square and Compasses: set of compasses joined with carpenter's square; within, radiant pentagram containing the letter G (representing geometry or the Great Architect of the Universe); intertwined sprigs of acacia (referring to the legend of Hiram Abiff) around. Edge: Plain.
Labouret 718; Zirkel 666; cf. Feuardent 6343 (for obv.); Marvin 91; Merzdorf 133; Worcestershire Coll. 177. Mint State. Highly lustrous and brilliant, with some light hairlines from a prior minor cleaning. Extremely appealing and interesting type featuring masonic and haunting imagery. Compare to a similar example—a PCGS AU-58, though more darkly toned—which realized a hammer of $780 (including buyer's fee) in Stack's Bowers February 2020 CCO (lot 70476).
Freemasonry in France began to grow in the early 18th century, with numerous lodges forming throughout the remainder of the century until the aftermath of the French Revolution caused the majority of them to close down briefly. Upon the formation of the French Empire under Napoléon I, many of these closed lodges opened again, further continuing their expansion. The Loge de la Parfaite Egalité at Rouen appears to have been initially formed on 9 March 1786 and, at the time of re-opening in 1803, had 37 active members. In 1806 it was reorganized, containing 60 members, while in 1857, it had 56 members and in 1881, 61 members. In 2012, the lodge was again reorganized and reopened.