Bolivia 1710-P Y 8 reales
This specimen was lot 237 in Ponterio sale 182 (New York, January 2014), where it sold for $21,150. The catalog description noted, "BOLIVIA. 8 Reales 'HEART', 1710-Y. EXTREMELY RARE 1710 Bolivian "Heart" 8 Reales Philip V (1700-46). EXTREMELY RARE and highly important. Struck on a specially prepared “heart shaped” planchet with properly aligned dies giving it a medallic die axis. The exact purpose of these specially prepared coins is uncertain. Their resemblance to 'The Most Sacred Heart of Jesus' or 'Sacred Heart' has caused some to speculate their manufacture being for special religious purposes. Since the religious demographic of Latin America is predominantly Catholic, it seems to be plausible support for this theory. They are nearly always encountered pierced for suspension, and often gilt to be worn on display. Regardless of their purpose, it is clear these 'heart' shaped pieces were produced for a special reason and should all be considered VERY RARE. As a date, we are aware of only one other example of a 1710 'heart' 8 Reales which was lot #193 in our Sale #42 of the 1990 Paul Karon collection. Well struck with near full legends, three full dates, as well as three clear assayers letters. A hint of contemporary gilding is still present in the protected areas giving this piece a lovely marigold tone. Quite attractive and worthy of the most sophisticated collections."
The Spanish colony of Upper Peru produced hammered cob coinage at the Potosi mint from 1573 to 1773, with a major debasement scandal and subsequent reform occurring in 1649-1652. The period 1767-1770 saw simultaneous issue of milled columnarios. The royal or presentation issues are very rare and highly sought after, while the regular strikes vary in price according to the visibility of the date, mint, and assayer initials.
Recorded mintage: unknown.
Specification: 27.07 g, 0.931 silver, 0.8103 oz ASW. This specimen 26.67 gms.
Catalog reference: Cayón-9227, KM-unlisted; Cal-type-150#852; Laz-unlisted date; Calbeto-unlisted date.
- Cayón, Adolfo, Clemente Cayón and Juan Cayón, Las Monedas Españolas, del Tremis al Euro: del 411 a Nuestros Dias, vol. 1, Madrid: Cayón9-Jano S.L., 2005.
- Ponterio, Richard, Ponterio sale 182: The January 2014 NYINC Auction: World Coins, Irvine, CA: Stacks Bowers LLC.
- Michael, Thomas, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1701-1800, 7th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2016.