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JM33158

George III oval countermark on Mexico 1794-FM 8-Reales NGC AU58

Regular price £1,750
Regular price Sale price £1,750

George III (1760-1820), oval countermark upon Spanish silver Eight Reales of King Charles IV (1788-1808), 1794, Mexico city mint, small oval hallmark of George III right at centre of obverse, bust of Spanish King laureate and draped right, date below, legend and toothed border surrounding, CAROLUS.III. DEI. GRATIA 1794, rev. crowned quartered shield of arms, pillar with ribbon incuse motto either side PLUS VLTRA, legend surrounding, .HISPAN. ET IND. REX. PTS. 8R. F.M, weight 27.07g (Bull 1852; Dies A/2; ESC 129; S.3765A). Host coin with some nicks and short scratch in obverse field, countermark nicely detailed, otherwise has been slabbed and graded by NGC as AU58, a pleasing example of the countermark series.

NGC certification 6945839-007.

These emergency countermarked coins were struck in relation to a crisis with the silver coinage at the end of the 18th Century where the supply of silver in commerce and for the Mint had dwindled due to the Wars in France after the Revolution in 1797. From March 1797 the Bank of England therefore released stocks of its Spanish dollars each with an oval countermark valued at 4s and 9d for currency. They did not really alleviate the problem of smaller change and were issued on an off with the oval countermark until a more complex larger octagonal mark replaced them from January to May 1804, as the oval pieces were being counterfeited. Eventually the octagonal replacements were also copied widely and the ultimate solution was to have the Soho Mint totally overstrike the Spanish Dollars with the Bank of England design.

The initials F and M at the end of the reverse legend represent the names of the Mint Assayers who were Francisco Arance Cobos and Mariano Rodriguez.

Provenance:

Ex "J. Wynn Williams" Collection, purchased from Spink & Son, March 1987.

Ex Mark Rasmussen List 36 - Autumn 2022, item 135.

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