Segovia, Spain, 50 reales (cincuentin), Philip III, 1620, assayer cross-topped A (Esteban de Pedrera

Currency:USD Category:Coins & Paper Money / World Coins - World (P-Z) Start Price:28,000.00 USD Estimated At:30,000.00 - 60,000.00 USD
Segovia, Spain, 50 reales (cincuentin), Philip III, 1620, assayer cross-topped A (Esteban de Pedrera
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This item SOLD at 2021 Nov 05 @ 15:52UTC-4 : AST/EDT
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Segovia, Spain, 50 reales (cincuentin), Philip III, 1620, assayer cross-topped A (Esteban de Pedrera), struck for the Count of Chinchon (later Viceroy of Peru), NGC XF 40, finest and only example in the NGC census. Cal-1003; Cayon-4962; KM-65. 170.06 grams. The concept of a massive silver coin of 50 reales, known as a cincuentin, began under Philip III, starting in 1609, whereby wealthy aristocrats could advertise their importance with unique coins struck from their own silver brought to the mint under special authorization. Research from Glenn Murray has shown that in the year 1620 two individuals were authorized to have these pieces made: 50 for the 4th Count of Chinchon (Luis Jeronimo Fernandez de Cabrera y Bobadilla, 1589-1647, hereditary Treasurer of the Segovia mint and Viceroy of Peru from 1629 to 1639) and 50 for Don Pedro Mesia de Tovar y Velazquez (1562-1637, granted the title of 1st Count of Molina de Herrera by Philip IV in 1627). These immense pieces (coins only in the sense that they were denominated and struck in coin designs, but of course were not practical for actual commerce) were made by machine using roller dies (rodillos) generally in quantities too small to wear out the die. For that reason, all of the known examples struck in 1617, 1618 and 1620 come from the same obverse die (easily determined by a progressive die-crack from the top right of the crown to the edge), with different reverse dies, depending on the year. The date on this specimen shows a 2/1 for the penultimate digit, and NGC calls the date 1620/10, but the reverse does not match any 1610 dies known to us. (Also it cannot be 1620/19 because documents confirm that no dies or strikings were authorized in 1619.) For the date 1620 there are actually two known reverses, this one regarded as being the first one made, presumably for the first set of 50 coins for the Count of Chinchon, and this die was re-engraved and used in 1622 as well. The second 1620 reverse (without any evidence of 2/1), was presumably for Don Pedro Mesia's production, and was re-engraved and used in 1623 (see the unprecedented offering of thirteen cincuentines in the Cayon auction of April 2015 for an example). The present piece, like all cincuentines, is a marvel of 17th century manufacture, as all details are evenly struck and well centered on a thick flan with varying degrees of outer border visible, and it is deeply toned over muted luster, with only light wear and marks, a few rim-bumps but nothing abusive, and significantly lacking any major flaws like other known examples. This piece is also particularly rare as among only fourteen examples across eleven dates/varieties to be straight-graded by NGC, which is to say it is undamaged and therefore well taken care of over its 400 years of life so far. By definition, it is a coin made for nobility, yet today it can be owned by anyone with the right amount of money and desire. NGC #6205430-001.