At first the assignats successfully stimulated the economy, but the shortage of circulating money for small transactions and the government need for still more money encouraged the Assembly to first lower, then eliminate the interest rate on the notes while simultaneously re-issuing instead of destroying them once they returned to the treasury. By September 1790, the assignat had become a true circulating paper currency, and 800 million livres worth of non-interest bearing notes were added to the initial issue.
In January of 1792 low-value assignats were issued in denominations of 10, 15, 25 and 50 sous to relieve the coin shortage and to replace the local paper issues that had become prevalent over the previous year.
The new Republic introduced its own imagery and language designed to reinforce revolutionary messages beginning with the issues of September 1792. Simple linear designs feature allegorical figures and symbols including the eagle, fasces and liberty cap (symbols from the Roman republic), and figural representations of liberty, equality and justice. In the end, it was these symbols and messages that help spread the revolution to the people during it critical early years, assisting in destroying the old system of creditors and bondholders and clearing the way for reform. The assignat enabled the French Republic to survive and also provided the French peasants a means of purchasing land that they could not otherwise have acquired, taking the first steps in creating a rural middle class.
- History in Your Hands – Hold and study a genuine ancient paper bill issued in France as currency from 1789 to 1796, during the French Revolution. These banknotes, called Assignats, were a tool used by the revolutionary government that eventually led to high inflation.
- Museum Monies – The new Republic introduced its own imagery and language designed to reinforce revolutionary messages beginning with the issues of September 1792. Specifications: 75x60mm, issued by the "First Republique"
- Inspected by Experts – The Assignat you receive is carefully inspected by a member of the American Numismatic Association (Nº 164636). Your banknote comes with a printed Certificate of Authenticity and is presented in a blister for proper conservation.