1718 Silver Pistareen Antique Coin
Struck between 1716 and 1771, the Spanish Cross Silver Pistareen is one of the first silver Spanish coins used in the American colonies. The name ‘Pistareen’ is derived from a popular formation of the word ‘peseta’ meaning ‘weight’ and eventually developed ‘peso’, the current unit of monetary value in Spain.
The Spanish Crown had never intended the Pistareen to leave Spain’s borders but began their journey travelling with sailors to the “Sugar Colonies” of Barbados. The coins eventually found their way to America and brought into common usage in many American colonies. Pistareens were rather popular within the “Tobacco Colonies”.
At the beginning of the 1800’s when the Spanish Colonial Reales became the leading coin for worldwide trade, most of the Pistareen’s were melted and re-struck hence the scarcity of the remaining original coins.
Obverse: PHILIPPUS *V * D * G * - Philip the Fifth. D.G. is a Latin abbreviation for Dei Gratia or By the Grace of God. The R for Reales denoting the silver unit of coinage appears over the mintmark S (Seville) to the left of the central crowned shield. The coin value in Roman numerals, II, (two reales) appears over the certifying mint master initial J on right of shield.
Reverse: Remnants of a cross quartered, separating the two castles symbolic of Castile from two Lions symbolic of León, along with the last number of the date 1718, being visible. Additionally, traces of the text: HISPANIARUM REX, meaning "King of Spain", can be seen on this side.
- Diameter is approximately 26 mm
- Comes safely packed in mylar-lined cardboard
- An original antique coin, not a reproduction