Colombia 1855-B 2 decimos
This specimen was lot 44204 in Stack's Bowers ANA sale (Philadelphia, August 2018), where it sold for $240. The catalog description noted, "COLOMBIA. 2 Decimos, 1855. Bogota Mint. AU-55 (PCGS). Good strike with luster remaining in peripheral areas. Lightly toned. From the Eldorado Collection of Colombian Coins." Unlike Mexico, which converted directly from 8 reales = 1 peso to 100 centavos = 1 peso in the 1860's, Colombia took a roundabout route to decimalization. In colonial Colombia, two reales coins were 6.77 g, .896 fine, just like the rest of Spanish America. The chaos of the struggle for independence and the shortage of bullion affected the two reales as it did the other denominations. Cundinamarca issues (1815-16, KM C4) were 4.9 g, .583 fine; the "Libertad Americana" issue (1819-20, KM 76 and 77) were 5.9 g, .666 fine. The first two reales of the independent Nueva Granada (1839-46, KM 97) were 5.5 g, .666 fine. A modified design was issued 1849-53 (KM 105 and 109) and then the coin was redesignated a two décimos, struck 1854-58 (KM 117, shown here). In 1866, the fineness was lowered to .835 and struck at that standard 1866-74 (KM 149, 155, 159, 160) and a twenty centavos struck 1874-86 (KM 176, KM 178).
Recorded mintage: unknown but the 1855/3 overdate obtains a considerable premium.
Specification: 5 g, .900 fine silver, .144 troy oz ASW.
Catalog reference: KM-117; Restrepo-192.4.
- Cuhaj, George S., and Thomas Michael, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900, 7th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2012.
- Restrepo, Jorge Emilio, Monedas de Colombia, 1619-2006, Medellin, Colombia: Impresiones Rojo, 2006.
- Ponterio, Richard, Kyle Ponterio and Chris Chatigny, The August 2018 Philadelphia ANA Auction: World Coins and Selections from the El Dorado Collection of Colombian Coins, Santa Ana, CA: Stack's Bowers LLC, 2018.