Guatemala (1839) 4 reales KM-92

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from the Stack's Bowers 2018 NYINC sale, lot 20426
Guatemala SB118-20426r.jpg

This specimen was lot 20426 in Stack's Bowers 2018 NYINC sale (New York, January 2018), where it sold for $4,320. The catalog description[1] noted, "GUATEMALA. 4 Reales, ND (Decree of October 31 to November 20, 1840). NGC AU-55. Type II sun over mountains countermark on a 1830-JL Bolivia 4 soles. VERY RARE host coin and denomination especially so in this state of preservation. Initially applied from 26 April 1839 through 20 November 1840 to cob coinage of good weight and purity. Then applied to Pesos Fuertes from May to 29 June 1840 and on the milled coins of 2, 4 and 8 Reales from Bolivia and Peru, before the Peru-Bolivian confederation, from 31 October to 20 November 1840. According to Jovel the assayers erroneously countermarked the present example because of the lack of compliance with weight requirements. A lovely example that is far and away nicer than most specimens seen on the market. It may take many years before another specimen this nice appears. Light attractive iridescent tone. Sure to excite the specialist of Guatemala or World countermarks." This is a foreign four reales counterstamped in Guatemala in 1840. It is a 'Type II', meaning that only the obverse was stamped. This particular method was used only in 1839. Foreign crowns were counterstamped from 1839-1841, during a time at which the Central American Republic was in a state of collapse and the country of Guatemala was emerging as an independent entity. Neither the silver nor the minting capacity was available to locally produce large denomination silver coins until 1859.

Recorded mintage: unknown.

Specification: 13.54 g, .892 fine silver.

Catalog reference: KM-92 (Plate Coin); Jovel-Type V C/M.


  • Cuhaj, George S., and Thomas Michael, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900, 7th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2012.
  • [1]Ponterio, Richard, Kyle Ponterio, John Kraljevich and Cris Chatigny, The January 2018 NYINC Sale: Ancient Coins, World Coins & Paper Money, featuring the Eldorado Collection of Colombian and Ecuadorian Coins, Santa Ana, CA: Stack's Bowers LLC, 2017.

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