Mexico 1732-Mo real

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Ponterio sale 153, lot 7323
image courtesy Ponterio & Associates

This 1732 one real from the Mexico City mint is an example of the first design for pillar fractionals, where the obverse legend surrounds the periphery. In addition, this unique type does not display the denomination or assayers' initials on either side of the shield. Those elements were added later in 1732, and in 1742 the design was changed again, allowing the crown to extend to the rim (see the 1742 1 real). Gilboy[1] lists this variety as extremely rare, with only a few pieces known to exist. This specimen was lot 7323 in Ponterio sale 153 (Baltimore, March 2010), where it sold for $3,565. The catalog description[2] noted, "MEXICO. Real, 1732. No denomination or assayer's letter. VERY RARE. Light encrustation. FINE."

Mexican numismatists hotly debate which side of the coin constitutes the obverse. Gilboy[1] 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.

Specification: 3.38 grams, .917 fine silver, .099 troy oz ASW.

Catalog reference: Cayón-8487, Gilboy M-1-1, KM 75.1.

Sources:

  • 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.
  • [1]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 Fractional Pillar Coinage of Mexico City, 1732-1771, Long Beach, CA: Agorocu Consulting, 2017.
  • [2]Ponterio, Richard, and Kent Ponterio, Ponterio sale 153: The March 2010 Baltimore Auction, Irvine, CA: Bowers and Merena, 2010.
  • Harper, David C., ed., North American Coins & Prices: A Guide to U. S., Canadian and Mexican Coins, 17th Ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2007.
  • Harris, Robert P., Pillars & Portraits, San José, CA: Bonanza Press, 1968.

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