Treasure Coin of Americas • Spanish Cob
During the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries, Spain became the premier supplier of gold and silver coins for the world. This was accomplished through the discovery of untold riches that were effectively mined in the Americas. Although Spain's mighty armada strove diligently to deliver wealth to the King, both pirates and bad weather became such obstacles that many galleons were lost at sea. Today's technology enables us to explore the ocean floor for its spectacular treasure.
Coinage of this historical period has fascinated experts as well as novices. These pieces were struck from dies and cut to weight according to the Spanish monetary system. They were called "macuquinas" in Spanish but are known to us as "cobs". Minted in five denominations in silver, the largest was the eight reales, famous in the colonies and among pirates as a "piece of eight". The other denominations were four reales, two reales, one reale and half reale.