Well I think you supplied the answer -the weight can go down to 5.0 grams or so and design elements are not universally a KILLER in these being regal. Do different design elements then really add value to these pieces?
Here is your response on that (VERY COMMON) 1833 Spanish 2 Pistareen fake back in April, 2012 with Gurney which appears to be silver plated over a Cu host:
Based on my experience the 1833 counterfeits are very common - they are usually high grade -
That's definitely the case... have also never seen any that seem to have anything more than light handling wear, though they do often display some corrosion due to their nature.
However, the idea that original specimens of 2 "reales de plata" had a higher intristic value than their theoretical equivalent, the 4 "reales de vellon" (as represented by the Joseph Napoleon coinage and that of Isabella II), and thus would have been driven out of circulation, is predicated on the incorrect reporting of the specifications of the Spain 1772-1833 "reales de plata" (halfR, 1R, 2R)... namely by the Krause book. Krause shows the Spain bust 2R, for example, as being 6.77g (same weight, essentially, as the "old standard" which the colonies had continued minting), though with a lowered silver fineness of 0.8125. While that quoted fineness is probably what they were using, the weight given for this coinage is simply wrong. A Spain bust 2R as struck seems to have weighed in just below 6.0g (high 5.9 range). I've never seen an exact explanation of why Krause confusingly provides a blatantly incorrect weight... However, I've seen speculation that this is due to Krause simply regurgitating what Spain "officially" reported about their coinage at the time, the idea being that Spain was trying to maintain some sort of illusion regarding their coinage.
Now, the conversion system for these two confusingly similarly-named systems was 8 "reales de plata" to 20 "reales de vellon"... Further muddying this is the fact that due to the earlier "tinkering" with the "reales de plata", the homeland Spain minor denominations of 2R, 1R, and half R had been reduced by roughly 20% as compared to the old standard (which again, was still used on Spain's COLONIAL output). In the English world, we called this devalued coinage "new plate" (a ba$tardized translation); note that the "pistareen", particularly common in the U.S. South, was used as a 20 cent piece once we adopted our dollar, the silver content of which was VERY close to the "peso", aka 8 Reales.... Under that conversion, it now took FIVE homeland Spain "2 reales" coins to equal a full "peso duro" (or old standard 8 reales) as opposed to four. Thus, the Spain BUST 2R, 1R, and half real "de plata" equated to the 4R, 2R, and 1R "de vellon". Now, if we figure the known TRUE weight of the Spain bust 2R (call it 6.0g even) and use the quoted 0.8125 fineness figure (I believe I've seen something that indicated the mid-1700's pistareens have indeed been found to test close to this figure), you end up with something very close to the known .157 troy oz. ASW of the "vellon" 4 Reales...
PS - Spain had been messing with the content of the "real de plata"-type homeland 2R, 1R, and half real (and for a while, the 8R and 4R also, though they eventually returned to the old standards on those two) back to the late 1600s, through all of the "pistareen" type round shield coinage... In the early 1700's, that coinage varied widely in terms of gross weight and the fineness of the alloy. By the mid-1700's, they seem to have settled on something similar the specs seen on the bust coinage that followed, as discussed above.
Just never went deep or even shallow on Pistareen CCC 2R's. JPL
Edited by colonialjohn
12/06/2022 12:31 pm