1168. Token AR 28, (1519-1589), c. 1559, Paris, (Ar, 28 mm., 4.85 g.)
Obverse / CATHARINA. D: G. FRANCOR /. REGIN. Shield crowned part of France and Medici.
Reverse / + ARDOREM. EXTINCTA. TESTANTVR. VIVERE. FLAMMA. “Rain in the form of tears falling from the sky on quicklime stones that vaporize it.
This token was struck after the death of Henry II when Catherine was regent.
Catherine de Medici (1519-1589) is the daughter of Lawrence the Magnificent and Madeleine de La Tour, Countess of Boulogne and Auvergne. She was born on April 23, 1519. She married the future Henri II on October 28, 1533 in Marseille. She had ten children, seven of whom lived: Francis II, Charles IX, Henry III, Francis Duke of Alençon, Elizabeth, wife of Philip II of Spain, Marguerite, known as Queen Margot, the first wife of Henri IV, and Claude of France, the wife of Charles III of Lorraine. She played no political role in the reign of her husband and suffered his infidelities with Diane de Poitiers. She hastened to avenge her after the death of the king by removing the castle of Chenonceau that the king had offered him. She was regent in 1552, 1559, 1560-1564 and 1574. Rid of Antoine de Bourbon and the duke of Guise, she tried to reconcile the Protestants and imposed the peace of Saint-Germain in 1570 but it ends up causing the massacre of Saint-Barthélémy in 1572. She died on January 5, 1589.