Spanish Colonial. Santa Domingo. ca. AD 1540's to 1550's. AE 4 maravedes. First Coin of the Caribbean. Countermarked with an anchor for Jamaica and a key of uncertain meaning.

Ancient Coins - Spanish Colonial. Santa Domingo. ca. AD 1540's to 1550's. AE 4 maravedes. First Coin of the Caribbean. Countermarked with an anchor for Jamaica and a key of uncertain meaning.
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Santa Domingo was the first mint set up in the Carribbean Islands, and the second Mint in the New World (preceeded by Mexico City by 2 or 3 years). Since the earliest issues from Mexico City are nearly impossible to locate, the copper coins of Santo Domingo represent the earliest New World coins the average collector can include in his collection.

Denomination : AE 4 Maravedes.

Date : Struck during the reign of Carlos and Joanna of Spain, who ruled from 1516 to 1556. These particular coins were struck between 1542 and 1556. This specimen was countermarked with an anchor to re-value it for use in Jamaica. These countermarks were applied between about 1611 and 1616.

Reference : C&C (1976) 826 to 829.

Size : 24.4 x 25.7 mm.  Weight : 2.11 grams.

Grade : The coin grades F with encrustationsand is a crude strike as is usual for this type.  There are two countermarks, with anchor on the reverse, and a key on the obverse.

Obverse : Gothic Y with CAROLVS ET IOANNA around, but only fragments of the inscription will be visible. The Y is flanked by an O / F to the left (the F is not clear) and O / IIII to the right, both of which are below pellets.  The key countermark is just below the middle.

Reverse : Two crowned pillers, with mint marks S to the left and P to the right, with REGIS HISPANIARVM E I around, but only fragments of the inscription will be visible.  The anchor countermark can be seen on this side, with the anchor's ring to the upper left, with the barb pointing to the middle of the coin, but the tanks are not struck in.
 
See the inset images of the countermarks up close.

This coin is from a hoard found on the Island of Jamaica in 1973.   The anchor countermark is for Jamaic and is thought to have been applied around 1609.  No one is certain what the key countermark means, but some have seculated that it is for Cuba where Key countermarks were used in the 19th century.

Price SKU: vcoin4005
US$ 77.50
  • € 66.75
  • £ 59.48
  • AUD 105.42
  • CHF 77.50
  • CAD 102.72

Rates for: 07/18/18

Ships from: Canada
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