Brazil 1790-B 6400 reis Fr-86

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Heritage sale 3026, lot 23892
Brazil 1790B 6400 reis rev H3026-23892.jpg

This specimen was lot 23892 in Heritage sale 3026 (Long Beach, October 2013), where it sold for $6,462.50. The catalog description[1] noted, "Maria I 'Plain Headdress' gold 6400 Reis 1790-B, AU55 NGC. Light circulation and small marks consistent with the grade. The Veu de Viuva (or Widow's V[e]il) 6400 Reis is a short-lived yet popular coin amongst Brazilian and Portuguese collectors. Of the total 8 coins struck (four at the Rio mint and four at Bahia mint), the 1790-B is by far the rarest and rarely seen. Upon her husband Pedro's death on May 25, 1786, Maria I assumed sole reign of the monarchy and retained her title as Queen Maria I of Portugal. It was this year that Maria was first officially noticed as mentally compromised, as she had a bout of delirium. Her mental instability intensified as time passed and in 1791, after her eldest son Jose, and heir presumptive to the throne died, it furthered still. On February, 10 1792, seventeen doctors signed a document declaring Maria mentally insane and fully unable to manage the kingdom. While technically still holding power, Maria's eldest son, João, stepped in to handle the state of affairs. In 1799, acting under the same role, João took the title of Prince Regent. He would serve in this capacity until Maria passed on March 20, 1816. From The RLM Collection, Part II." The peça or 6400 réis was the most common gold denomination with its fractions being much scarcer.

Recorded mintage: unknown.

Specification: 14.34 g, .917 fine gold, .423 troy oz AGW.

Catalog reference: KM 218.2, Russo-507, Gomes-28.06.


  • [1]Bierrenbach, Cristiano, Warren Tucker and Scott Cordry, Heritage Signature Auction 3026, World & Ancient Coins, featuring the RLM Collection, Part Two, the Nogales Collection and the Goetz Medals Die Archive, Dallas, TX: Heritage Auction Galleries, 2013.
  • Friedberg, Arthur L. and Ira S. Friedberg, Gold Coins of the World, From Ancient Times to the Present, 7th ed., Clifton, NJ: Coin and Currency Institute, 2003.
  • Krause, Chester L., and Colin R. Bruce II, Standard Catalog of World Coins: Spain, Portugal and the New World, Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2002.
  • Pimentel, Alvaro Mendes, Catálogo de Moedas Brasileiras de 1643 a 1962, 9a Ed., Rio de Janeiro, 1962.

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