Mexico 1737-Mo MF 4 reales

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from the Mountain Groan Collection
Mexico 1737 4 reales rev DSLR.jpg
Aureo sale 232, lot 2289

This is one of a series struck 1732-47 during the reign of Philip V (1700-46). A rare overdate, 1737/6, is noted for the year. The 4 reales is the scarcest colonial denomination although all dates are available except for the very rare 1732 and 1733 dates. Specimens in high grade are very rare. The 1737 is an affordable date (Gilboy[1] calls it "scarce" as opposed to "very rare") tho the SCWC prices it about double the later dates of the 1730's. The first date marked "common" is 1740.

The second specimen was lot 2289 in Aureo sale 232 (Barcelona, March 2010) where it did not sell. The catalog description[2] noted, "1737. México. MF. 4 reales. Columnario. Rara. MBC-/BC+. (four reales of 1737, Mexico City mint; rare, Very Fine/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.

Specification: 13.54 g, .917 fine silver, .399 troy oz ASW.

Catalog reference: Cayón-9104, Gilboy M-4-9, KM 94, Cal. 1052.


  • [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.
  • 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.
  • Yonaka, Brad, A Variety Guide to the Fractional Pillar Coinage of Mexico City, 1732-1771, Long Beach, CA: Agorocu Consulting, 2017.
  • Harper, David C., ed., North American Coins & Prices: A Guide to U. S., Canadian and Mexican Coins, 17th Ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2007.
  • [2]Sisó, Teresa, Eduardo Domingo and Lluís Lalana, Selección de 500 Monedas, Medallas y Billetes, Barcelona: Aureo y Calicó Subastas, 2011.

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