Peru 1722-L M 2 reales
This specimen was lot 446 in Sedwick Treasure Auction 26 (Winter Park, FL, November 2019), where it sold for $2,618. The catalog description noted, "Lima, Peru, cob 2 reales Royal (galano), 1722M, rare, ex-Santa Rosa. Extremely bold full details all over on a broad, round flan with nearly full legends showing backwards N's, three dates and assayers, great full pillars and cross, beautifully toned fields, XF with crude hole to left of cross. Pedigreed to the Santa Rosa de Lima collection (our Auction 18, lot #576)." Despite pleas from locals in Lima for a mint, Spanish authorities preferred to concentrate coinage production at Potosi in Upper Peru. The mint was shuttered multiple times by orders from Spain, not to reopen permanently until 1684. Cob two reales were struck at the Lima mint 1701-46 for Philip V of Spain and became the "two bits" of pirate lore. The fineness was lowered from 0.931 to 0.917 in 1725. The Mexico City mint was converted to milled coinage in 1732-34 but Lima would not follow suit until 1751.
Recorded mintage: unknown.
Specification: 6.77 g, .917 fine silver, this specimen 7.03 g.
Catalog reference: S-L20; KM-unlisted (R32 for type); CT-unlisted, Cayón-8730.
- Michael, Thomas, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1701-1800, 7th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2016.
- Cayón, Adolfo, Clemente Cayón and Juan Cayón, Las Monedas Españolas, del Tremis al Euro: del 411 a Nuestros Dias, vol. 1, 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.
- Sedwick, Daniel Frank, Augi Garcia and Cori Sedwick Downing, Treasure Auction 26, Winter Park, FL: Daniel Frank Sedwick LLC, 2019.