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Countermarks

NumisdocNumismatic encyclopedia

Written on February 2, 2019 • Last edit: February 23, 2019 • Comments ()

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Cuba


The Countermarks


Cuba

Grill or Lattice
Cuba
Photo : © adanieluy
Year: 1841






Note: The countermark were set to differentiate the Spanish coins introduced to the island (known as "sevillanas" for Seville city, originating from most of the vessels that arrived to Cuba), that had less value than the similar coins minted at Hispanic-American minthouses.
Size of American coins was very close, and design with minor differences to Spanish, both had bust of same kings, and main difference was American coins had 2 columns on sides of coat, and some letters or monograms to indicate the minthouse.
Key
Cuba
Photo : © adanieluy
Photo : © adanieluy
Year: 1872-1877






Note: It is considered this countermark was used by revolutionary troops, to finance the movement.
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Ecuador

MDQ
Ecuador
Photo : © Arpis
Photo : © Arpis







Note: The first Ecuadorian coins were Colombian coins with counter MDQ, standing for Moneda De Quito (meaning Coin of Quito).
RA
Galapagos Islands
Photo : © Arpis
Year: 1884 to 1916






Note: The RA mark is attributed to Rogelio Alvarado for use in the sugar mill El Progreso located in the Galapagos Islands. In theory this monogram was used in coins between 1884 and 1916.
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Mozambique

Crown P.M
Mozambique
Photo : © A. Monge da Silva
Photo : © A. Monge da Silva
Year: 1889
Characteristics:
  • Diameter: 7.5 mm
  • Crown width: 6.5 mm
  • Crown height: 4.4 mm
  • PM width: 3.4 mm
  • PM height: 1.6 mm
Engraver:

Frederico Augusto de Campos

Note: 40 dies have been made at Casa da Moeda de Lisboa (Lisbon mint house) by the engraver and sent to Mozambique.
18 stayed in the capital and the remaining were sent to the different districts. They did not last long and, a few months later, most of them were broken.
Since it was not possible to make new dies locally with the crown, and due to the urgency, they have made new dies with the letters “P.M” only.
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Puerto Rico

Sun
Vieques (Crabs) Island
Photo : © adanieluy
Photo : © adanieluy
Year: about 1858






Note: It is reported most of these countermarks have 12 rays sun, but 10 and 13 rays are also known to exist. This countermark seems to have been mostly used on West Danish Indies coins.
Fleur-de-Lys
Puerto Rico
Photo : © adanieluy
Photo : © adanieluy
Year: 1844






Note: Initially coins were just holed to countermark them; of course, as anyone could copy it, many of these coins were not accepted by people, as it only lowered their intrinsic value. About 40 punch dies were made, with several variants.
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Spain

VIII 1641 / VIII 1642
Spain
Photo : © Aureo & Calicó
Photo : © Aureo & Calicó
Year: 1641 and 1642






Note: On February 11th of 1641 King Philip IV ordered to countermark the hammered billon coins that were being used as 4 maravedis. These were the 8 maravedis of Philip III and IV. The reason was the need to finance the expenses for the Thirty Years' War.
The marks are an VIII on one side and the date 1641 or 1642 under a crown on the other side.
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Uruguay

Banco Central Del Uruguay
Uruguay
Photo : © adanieluy
Photo : © adanieluy
Year: 1987 and 1997
Characteristics:
  • Used on coins in treasury of Banco Central del Uruguay
  • Commemorates its 20th and 30th anniversary
  • 2,000 pieces for 1987
  • 500 pieces for 1997
Note: Original coins were minted for FAO coin program, and sent to that organization to be part of the albums they set. Extra coins were minted and kept at Uruguay, as non circulating, but since they could be exchanged for its face value at Bank dependencies, many have circulated for several months, till Bank announced they had no tender value, and people kept them. Many were used to make medals.
Countermarked coins were mainly given to Bank employees, depending on time working there, and the remaining were sold as numismatic material later.
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