Guatemala 1733-G J 1/2 real round flan '+' variety
Shown is a 1733 ½ real from the Guatemala mint, of a type issued only in that year, during the reign of Philip V. 1733 was the first year the Guatemala mint struck coinage, having first applied for authorization from the Spanish crown in 1714. The machinery was brought from Mexico City, and had already seen much service. As a consequence of that, and the fact that in Guatemala there were few people skilled in striking coins, production of milled coins equivalent to those being produced at Mexico City was not economically feasible. The endeavour was abandoned shortly thereafter and the mint began striking coins on irregular planchets without applying edge devices, which was achieved at an acceptable rate.
The example shown was sold by Cayon Auctions in June of 2009 for 2600 euros. It is the variety in which the denomination is not shown, the place taken to the right of the shield by a + sign. On the left side of the shield is the assayer's initial 'J'.
Mexican numismatists hotly debate which side of the coin constitutes the obverse. Gilboy depicts the shield side as the obverse as that side bears the king's name. However, auction catalogs and dealer listings more frequently use the pillars and globes side as the obverse, as that side bears the date.
Recorded mintage: unknown but extremely rare.
Specifications: 1.62 g, 0.917 fine silver, 0.0498 oz ASW.
Catalog reference: KM2, Cayón-8233.
- Gilboy, Frank F., The Milled Columnarios of Central and South America: Spanish American Pillar Coinage, 1732 to 1772, Regina, Saskatchewan: Prairie Wind Publishing, 1999.
- Yonaka, Brad, A Variety Guide to the Pillar Coinage of the Guatemala, Bogota, Lima, Potosi, and Santiago Mints, 1752-1771, Long Beach, CA: Agorocu Consulting, 2018.
- Jara, Carlos M., Historia de la Casa de Moneda de Guatemala 1731-1776, Santiago, Chile: Andros Impresores, 2010.
- Cayón, Adolfo, Clemente Cayón and Juan Cayón, Las Monedas Españolas, del Tremis al Euro: del 411 a Nuestros Dias, 2 volumes, Madrid: Cayón-Jano S.L., 2005.
- Calicó, Xavier, Numismática Española: Catálogo General con Precios de Todas las Monedas Españolas Acuñadas desde Los Reyes Católicos Hasta Juan Carlos I, 1474 a 2001, Barcelona: Aureo & Calicó, 2008.
- Krause, Chester L., and Colin R. Bruce II, Standard Catalog of World Coins: Eighteenth Century 1701-1800, Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2002.
- Robinson, Charles, The Coins of Central America, 1733-1965, San Benito, TX: 1965.