New rim and edge on cruzados by Peter II of Portugal

Started by lusomosa, September 12, 2007, 10:31:40 PM

Previous topic - Next topic

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

lusomosa

Greetings to all,
Here's a pic from a cruzado ( silver coin of 22,9 g officially ). These coins were minted originally by Johan IV after Portugal regained Independence in 1640, they were worth 400 reis. Due to the war against Spain and the caotic political and economical situation of Portugal ( Split from Spain, refugees from Spanish colonies, war against Holland in Brazil, Angola, India, Sri Lanka and Indonesia etc, etc )
Coins were clipped a lot to get some extra silver. The next King Afonso VI, changed the value of the cruzado to 500 reis by means of a countermark and the next king finally introduced mechanical minting. He got the old coins and gave them a new rim new legend as the old one was in most cases not legible anymore. He also ordered a "cord" to be placed along the edge so that any attempt to remove any material from the coin could immediately be seen.
He did not place his own name on this coins. the coins got the original text from about 60 years before.
I ask my self : would it not have been easier to just remove all this coins and mint new ones ?
                   Is such an example of modification/improvement to a coin been made any where else in the world ?

It puzzles me that so much work was done to so many individual coins, they had to be brought in and were altered in order to be accepted again as legal.

Any reactions or ideas ?

LP

lusomosa


lusomosa

Here's one cruzado from Johan IV with the countermark of 500 made during the reign of Afonso VI, but not with the new rim made by his successor.

LP

BC Numismatics

Luis,those are very nice counterstamped coins from Portugal that you have got there.I've seen a few counterstamped coins from Spain & Brazil,but none from Portugal,however.

Aidan.

Figleaf

My compliments for the coin too. They're yummy!

The key to answer your question is Gresham's law (though it's much older than Gresham): bad money drives out good money. If the money circulation consists of bad coin and you introduce good coin, your good coin will be hoarded or remelted and your bad coin will stay in circulation. You can strike any number of good coins and the money in circulation will remain the same.

The optimal theoretical solution is to declare the old coins invalid. This is not possible in practice. For one thing, the theoretical solution presumes that you can melt the old coins and turn them into new coins instantly. If you can't, you need huge amounts of silver as a buffer during the re-minting. For another, there are a large amount of coins in circulation and you cannot change them all in a limited period. Even a period where old and new types are valid will cause chaos. People will try to pass on old coins to others, who will object, maybe violently, while the new coins will circulate very slowly, causing a wave of inflation.

Therefore, 17th century governments will apply a second best solution by cleverly turning Gresham's law around: the old coins are declared invalid, except if they are counterstamped and when they are counterstamped they are tariffed so that they are more expensive per gram of silver than the new coins. Counterstamping is a much simpler operation than coining new money. Holders of money bear the loss of a reduced value of their coins (economically, this works like a tax on cash money), the government bears the cost of the counterstamping operation and everyone wants to spend the new coins, while the old ones are best turned in for remelting. This is a valuable added advantage of this modus operandi: the silver of the old coins can be used to make new coins and no silver reserves are required.

The rim is of course a counter clipping measure. Hammered coins are often ex-centrically struck. The rule of thumb in the middle ages was that the whole inner circle of a coin had to be visible for the coin to be valid. The minimum, of course, became a maximum. Clippers would shave off silver where the edge of the planchet was the farthest away from the inner circle, so that the medieval coins that have come to us seem much better centered than they were when they left the mint. Mechanical striking made it possible to show the outer rim of the coin in its entirety on (practically) all coins, so the norm could be widened to demand that the whole outer rim of the coin should be visible. This defeated the clipper and increased people's trust in coins, paving the way for token coinage.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

BC Numismatics

Peter,have you ever seen the counterstamped coins that were used in both the Azores & Madeira? Some of those coins are pretty pricey,even by Krause's prices.

Luis,King Joao IV was the King of Portugal who regained Portugal's independence from Spain in 1640.I don't know what King Pedro II of Portugal's claim to fame was.The most famous King of Portugal I reckon was King Manuel II (reigned 1908-10 in Portugal & from 1910 until his death in exile in England in 1932).King Manuel II's coins are NOT easy to find.

Aidan.

lusomosa

#6
Hi Aidan, here is a sequence of events in Portugal after 1640 till Pedro II.
1640- 1 December Portugal declares independence
       - 15 December D. Johan IV becomes King
1641- truce treaty signed with the United Provinces for a period of 10 years, Portugal opens it's ports to their ships. In spite of the treaty,Brazil is still being conquered by the provinces and S.thomas island and Luanda and parts of Angola are conquered as well.
       - Alliance with England, Sweden and France.
       - Ceuta does not join the new king and remains with Spain.
1642- Mission to De Hague to try and stop the aggressions from the United Provinces.
1644- battle in Montijo (Spain) between Portugal and Spain
1648- Luanda reconquered.
1656- Brazil completely reconquered by Portugal.
       - D. Afonso VI becomes regent as his father died and he is of young age.
1657- Dutch ships keep the entry to the Tejo river and Lisbon blocked.
1658- Dutch conquer Sri Lanka completely from Portugal.
1659- Battle in Elvas ( Portugal ) against Spain
1661- Peace with the United Provinces, They may keep all territories conquested in Asia and re vogues to attack Brazil, Angola and S.
         Thomas island. Portugal pays 4 million Cruzados ( during a period of 16 years. )
       - Peace with Spain Portugal gives Tangier in Morocco to Spain.
       - Portugal is at this moment at it's lowest economical moment ever in history.     
1662- D.Afonso VI takes the government of the Reign.
       - South of Portugal invaded by Spain after political coup in Spain
1663- Battle in Ameixal ( Portugal ) against Spain.
1666- D. Afonso VI marries with D. Maria Isabel of Savoy.
1667- Coup in Portugal as many are suspicious of D. Afonso and of his wife. His brother Pedro becomes Regent.
1668- Peace treaty with Spain, Portugal officially gives Ceuta to Spain.
1669- D. Afonso sent to the Azores.
       - New treaty with the United Provinces.
1673- Rumors of Spain trying to replace D. Afonso in the Portuguese throne.
1674- D. Afonso is brought to Sintra ( near Lisbon ) where he is kept prisoner in one of the royal palaces.
1683- D. Afonso dies and his brother becomes D. Pedro II
1696- Gold found in Brazil.
1699- first 514 kg of gold arrive from Brazil. this amount will increase tremendously in the following years.
1700- Charles II of Spain dies with no succession.
1701- War of Spanish succession, Portugal makes treaty with France Louie XIV to install Phillipp V as king
1703- Due to the Portuguese colonial interests, Portugal Joins the side of England, Austria and the United Provinces.
       -28 June Portuguese troops with the help of some English and Dutch conquer Madrid and pronounce the Arch Duke Charles
        King of Spain. 4 th August Madrid is retaken by Spanish troops.
       -9 th December Pedro II dies.

As for coins from Manuel II, most of his coins are mot easy to find in Very fine or better but the 5, 100 and 200 reis are relatively easy to find.
LP

lusomosa

Greetings Figleaf,
I just read that the coins that got the new rim, were coins which were not clipped and after the "improvement" kept the value of the old countermark ( 250 or 500 reis ). Clipped coins were removed and the persons got the approximate amount of coined silver back.
New Cruzados kept the face value or 400 reis but with less silver that the older types.
You were absolutely correct or your previous comment.

Congrats,

LP

Figleaf

Quote from: BC Numismatics on September 13, 2007, 11:25:27 AM
Peter,have you ever seen the counterstamped coins that were used in both the Azores & Madeira?

I am the proud owner of a Gomes catalogue, BCN, but I never saw most Portuguese coins in 3-D. My humble collection of Portuguese coins starts in 1837 and I still need 35 types (5 after 1910), including a few I will not be able to afford. I enjoy pics of coins just as much as the real thing, though.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Bookworm

Quote from: BC Numismatics on September 13, 2007, 11:25:27 AM
I don't know what King Pedro II of Portugal's claim to fame was.

Pedro II is not very famous, even in Portugal. But he was a good king, one of the best we had, in my humble oppinion. As for claims to fame, I can think of at least two:

- Brazilian gold was discovered during his reign. The fame was gone to his successor Jo?o V, during whose reign the largest quantity of gold arrived to the kingdom.

- When still Prince Regent, he introduced milled coinage in Portugal.

Aldo

BC Numismatics

Aldo,thank you for that information about King Pedro II of Portugal.The most well-known King Pedro I had heard of was King Pedro IV,who was also Emperor Pedro I of Brazil,who abdicated in 1828 in favour of his daughter,Queen Maria II da Gloria,& was forced to abdicate in favour of his son,Emperor Pedro II of Brazil in 1831.He fought against his brother,Miguel,who had usurped the Portuguese crown.

Aidan.

Bookworm

Quote from: BC Numismatics on September 20, 2007, 08:51:20 PM
The most well-known King Pedro I had heard of was King Pedro IV,who was also Emperor Pedro I of Brazil,who abdicated in 1828 in favour of his daughter,Queen Maria II da Gloria,& was forced to abdicate in favour of his son,Emperor Pedro II of Brazil in 1831.He fought against his brother,Miguel,who had usurped the Portuguese crown.

Pedro IV's cognomen is "The Soldier King" because of that war. The british call it "The War of the Two Brothers", while the portuguese call it "The Liberalism Wars". It was a civil war between liberals (Pedro IV's party) and defenders of an absolute monarchy (Miguel I's party - Miguel I's cognomen is "The Absolute".). The war lasted from 1832 to 1834, but for decades after there was still fighting, as anti-liberals, gathered in gangs of outlaws conducted guerrilla actions.

Back to Pedro II, I forgot one reason why he should be famous: he put the country back on its feet after a war against Spain that lasted almost 30 years. One of the measures he took was to put some order in the monetary system, which was chaotic, due to the war. Unfortunately, Portugal was (unwillingly) dragged into the War of Spanish Succession, but by then enough brazilian gold was arriving to Portugal to keep the country afloat.

Incidentally, Pedro II's sister, Catarina de Bragan?a, married the king of England, Charles II. As part of her dowry, England received Bombay, which Charles II immediately sold to the East India Company for a pittance, or so I've been told...  ::)

Aldo