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 FROM THE 1715 PLATE FLEET

LIMA 1713/2 M  eight escudos, rare date and overdate,

one of the finest known double date 1713/2 Lima onza from the Fleet

 

      The 1713 Lima onza is a rare Fleet date, "rarissima" in Calico's judgment. By conservative estimate, it is at least 10 times rarer than the popular 1712 onza that precedes it and rarer than any of the 1707-1711 issues. Prior to 1988, the 1713 Lima was in fact virtually uncollectible. Only four examples were recovered from Douglas Beach (Nieves site) in 1964, one of then immediately impounded into the Florida State Collection. No 1713 Lima onzas were found on Fleet sites in the 24 seasons following 1964. Then in the summer of 1988 salvors got lucky. A total of sixteen Lima 1713's were reportedly found. That was the good news, the bad news was the condition of the coins.. All but three of the 1713 were found imbedded in a gritty, grey conglomerate. When removed from the conglomerate, all showed corrosion, often heavy, staining, and even blistering in some cases. They were certainly among the worst looking onzas recovered from the Fleet. In June of 2003 nine of these 1713's appeared in a Treasury auction. Collectors were appropriately unimpressed by their condition. Only two onzas (lots 61 and 62) did not display rough, grainy, stained surfaces.

    

This 1713/2 Lima onza was an indisputable prize of the 1988 find. Its mint state surfaces were spared the damage because it was not one of the coins found imbedded in the gritty conglomerate. It has a beautiful color and luster and is boldly struck on a large planchet (33.5 mm) that displays the second date so desirable to advanced collectors. The clear 1713/2 overdate appears both in the legend and center of the coin. It  resulted when the Lima mint re-engraved the final digit of the date on an unused die.

 

 

The population of undamaged, collector-quality 1713 Lima onzas from both the 1964 and 1988 likely does exceed 6 or 7 coins. This is by far the finest of them. This 1713/2 Fleet Lima last appeared at public sale in Ponterio Sale 148 as lot 948, where it realized $13,800.