Colombia 1886-M 5 decimos

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Ponterio sale 177, lot 13110
photo courtesy Stacks Bowers LLC
from the Stack's Bowers 2018 ANA sale, lot 42050
photo courtesy Stacks Bowers LLC
from the Stack's Bowers 2018 ANA sale, part of lot 44316
photo courtesy Stacks Bowers LLC
from the Stack's Bowers 2018 ANA sale, part of lot 44389
photo courtesy Stacks Bowers LLC

This five décimos was struck in Medellin, Colombia, of a type issued 1886 only. The Medellin mint began issuing five décimos in 1868 along with the Bogotá mint, the denomination being completely unknown in Colombia until then. The Bogotá mint, however, switched to fifty centavos pieces (of the same size and weight) in 1872. Production increased after the issue of silver pesos ceased in 1871. Popayán also issued a few 1868-78 but concentrated on gold coins. To the delight and despair of collectors, the half dollars of Colombia come in a profusion of dates, styles, varieties and errors and form a collecting specialty all their own. The first specimen was lot 13110 in Ponterio sale 177 (Chicago, August 2013), where it sold for $1,528. The catalog description[1] noted, "COLOMBIA. 5 Decimos, 1886. NGC EF-45. With two stars and two dots in reverse legend. Fineness 'LEV'. RARE." The second specimen was lot 42050 in Stack's Bowers ANA sale (Philadelphia, August 2018), where it sold for $1,920. The catalog description[2] noted, "COLOMBIA. 1886-M 5 Decimos. Medellín mint. AU-53 (PCGS). Round top 3. An extremely rare variety, noted as 'four known' by Restrepo. Beautifully toned in antique gray with subtle multicolored highlights across both sides. Choice and appealing with only trivial handling. A very scarce item." The third specimen was part of lot 44316 in Stack's Bowers ANA sale (Philadelphia, August 2018), which sold for $600. The catalog description[2] noted, "COLOMBIA. Lot of (3) 5 Decimos & (1) 50 Centavos, 1873-1887. Medellin Mint. EF Detail--Cleaned (2), EF Detail--Harshly Cleaned & AU Detail--Cleaned (PCGS). 4 pieces in lot. Interesting mix of scarce types and varieties. ...1886 5 Decimos 0.500/0.835 fineness, Restrepo-301.3, "DECIMOS" without accent mark, 1886 50 Centavos "DIOS PATRIA LIBERTAD" on edge, Restrepo-313.1, starting to retone, ...From the Eldorado Collection of Colombian Coins." The fourth specimen was lot 44389 in Stack's Bowers ANA sale (Philadelphia, August 2018), where it sold for $192. The catalog description[2] noted, "COLOMBIA. Lot of (3) 50 Centavos, 1881-1886. Bogota Mint. AU-58 (3) (PCGS). 3 pieces in lot. ...1886, KM-177a.1, Restrepo-311.5, lightly toned, ...From the Eldorado Collection of Colombian Coins."

Recorded mintage: unknown but scarce. Many varieties exist.

Specification: the first specimen 12.5 g, .500 fine silver; the second specimen 12.5 g, .835 fine silver, .335 troy oz ASW, edge lettered DIOS LEI LIBERTAD.

Catalog reference: the first specimen: KM-164.1; Restrepo-Type 303 #1; the second specimen: KM 161.1a, Restrepo 298.15.

Source:

  • Cuhaj, George S., and Thomas Michael, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900, 7th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2012.
  • Almanzar, Alcedo, and Dale Seppa, Coins of Colombia, San Antonio, TX: 1973.
  • Restrepo, Jorge Emilio, Monedas de Colombia, 1619-2006, Medellin, Colombia: Impresiones Rojo, 2006.
  • [1]Ponterio, Richard, Ponterio sale 177: The August 2013 Chicago ANA Auction, World Coins, Irvine, CA: Stack's Bowers, LLC, 2013.
  • [2]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.

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