Valencia (1516-56) 2 ducats Fr-91

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Kunker sale 264, lot 3330
Stack's Bowers 2020 ANA sale, lot 21580
The first specimen was lot 3330 in Künker sale 264 (Osnabrück, June 2015), where it sold for €7,000 (about US$9,043 including buyer's fees). The catalog description[1] noted,
"KÖNIGREICH Carlos I. 1516-1556. 2 Dukaten o. J. Valencia. Gekrönte Büste l. in Verzierung//Gekröntes, quadratförmiges Wappen in Verzierung. GOLD. Sehr selten, besonders in dieser Erhaltung. Attraktives Exemplar, vorzüglich. (kingdom of Spain, Charles I (1516-56) undated double ducat of Valencia. Obverse: bust left; reverse: crowned lozenge arms. Very rare, especially in this grade, extremely fine.)"
The second specimen was lot 21580 in Stack's Bowers ANA sale (Las Vegas, August 2020), where it sold for $31,200. The catalog description[2] noted,
"Unique Double Ducado of Valencia with a 150+ Year Provena[n]ce. Aloiss Heiss Plate Coin Published 1867. SPAIN. Valencia. 2 Ducados, ND (1517-56). Charles I. NGC VF-30. UNIQUE with a neat 19th Century provenance. An unusually small, gaunt or even emaciated head faces left in an enormous open crown in a faint circle, legend '+CAROLVS. DEI. GRACIA RE'; Reverse: A plain circle encloses a crowned lozenge-shaped shield, outer legend is "+VALENCIE. MAIORICARVM." King of Valencia and the Balearics. This highly distinctive coin with its haggard small bust is not listed in Friedberg. Cayon types 3251 and 3253 both show small busts but these are enclosed by circular Gothic frames and tiny shield below the Arms that are not present in this fascinating specimen. Splendidly detailed and boasting substantial luster, it was reintroduced to the numismatic world in an auction conducted in Spain by the leading authority Juan Cayon during 2001. It can only be regarded as one of the most desirable coins of the 16th century Spanish world, worthy of a significant bid that takes into account its marvelous rarity. Ex: Stack's Auction January 11, 2010, Lot # 1032. Ex: Cayon Auction December 13, 2001, Lot # 675. Plated in Monedas Hispano-Cristianas Vol. II By Aloiss Heiss published Madrid and Paris 1867."
Spain was not usually an issuer of ducats but this seems to be an exception.

Recorded mintage: unknown.

Specification: 7 g, .986 fine gold, the first specimen 7,03 g.

Catalog reference: the first specimen: Fr-91 (under Valencia); Calicó 8, Cayón-3253, the second specimen Heiss-pl.#99 #5 (plate coin); Fr-91 (for denomination); Cal-Type 10 #11 (plate coin); cf. Cayón-3251 (for basic type).


  • Friedberg, Arthur L. and Ira S. Friedberg, Gold Coins of the World, From Ancient Times to the Present, 7th ed., Clifton, NJ: Coin and Currency Institute, 2003.
  • [1]Künker Münzauktionen und Goldhandel, Catalog 264, Gold coins | Russian Coins and Medals | German Coins after 1871, Osnabrück: Fritz Rudolf Künker GmbH & Co., AG, 2015.
  • 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: Spain, Portugal and the New World, Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2002.
  • [2]Orsini, Matt, Richard Ponterio and Kyle Ponterio, The August 2020 ANA Auction: World Coins, featuring the Duke of Lansing Collection, Santa Ana, CA: Stack's Bowers LLC, 2020.

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