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"Pirate Cobs"

Wondering what these are exactly. Spanish? 2 Maravedis? 8 Maravedis? I can't find any that have been certified. I realized I've spent way too much time on these & figured I'd ask you guys :)







  • lordmarcovanlordmarcovan Posts: 43,194 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 13, 2023 2:57AM

    Yes, they're Spanish, and yes, they're maravedis. I'll confess that I find the denominations on these confusing since they were often revalued by way of counterstamps.

    As to the whole "pirate" thing, the most one could say about that is that they're from roughly the same era that coincides with the "Golden Age of Piracy" in the Atlantic. But I'm not sure how often pirate ships would have carried chests of copper maravedis around. Maybe, but I would think they'd be more into the silver and gold. Well, I guess pirates would be carrying around whatever they could grab.

    The whole "Pirate Cobs" thing is mostly marketing PR. But I suspect you knew that since you used the quotation marks in the title.

    These are fun coins, if a little bewildering for me personally, as far as attributing them goes. They're mostly pretty cheap, probably because they're fairly common. But they're definitely relics of an interesting era, which is why I'm sure the whole "pirate" angle gets played up so much.

    While metal detecting here on Saint Simons Island, Georgia in 1998, I dug a 1658 4-maravedis at an old mission site.

    Yep. "Pirates". Or raiders, anyway. But they didn't get this coin. It stayed in the dirt for me to find more than three centuries later.


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  • CoinCoinsCoinCoins Posts: 678 ✭✭✭

    "they're definitely relics of an interesting era"

    i agree B) thanks for the info

  • BustDMsBustDMs Posts: 1,550 ✭✭✭✭✭

    A few from the box.

    Q: When does a collector become a numismatist?

    A: The year they spend more on their library than their coin collection.

    A numismatist is judged more on the content of their library than the content of their cabinet.
  • WillieBoyd2WillieBoyd2 Posts: 5,025 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Unfortunately for California cob hunters pirates pretty much left the state alone.

    The only pirate raid on Califoria occurred at Monterey on November 20, 1818 and by that time Spain was minting milled coinage.



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  • 7Jaguars7Jaguars Posts: 7,176 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I believe cow hides and tallow (sp?) were the currency then. It was THE cow country until the great drought of 1862...Also, California was invaded a bit later on - by the United States!

    Love that Milled British (1830-1960)
    Well, just Love coins, period.
  • SimonWSimonW Posts: 548 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 23, 2023 5:55AM

    This is a REAL PIRATE COB it’s also an authentic one (see what I did there? 😂)

    The only known and documented shipwreck that was due to pirates that’s ever been found come from the Ship Consolación.


    Within the Bay of Guayaquil in Ecuador lies the small island of Santa Clara, nicknamed Isla de Muerto in the 1680s by the Spanish. Isla de Muerto (Island of the Dead) was often a routine stopover for the Armada del Mar del Sur, the Galleons carrying treasure from Spain to Chile and Peru to Panama.

    A delay in getting its silver coins from the mint in Potosi prevented the Santa Maria de la Consolacion from sailing with the rest of the armada from Callao, Chile. The lone ship eventually met with english pirates led by Bartholomew Sharpe…

    The pirates gave chase to the Consolación the and the captain tried to outrun the pirates, but with a belly laden with silver, they couldn’t outrun the faster ship. Instead of surrendering the treasure the captain decided to ground the Consolacion on Isla de Muerto, while running for it, the vessel hit a reef before reaching the island, the ship was evacuated and intentionally set on fire to stop the pirates from reaping their ill gotten gains.

    Neither pirates nor returning Spaniards were able to recover all of the treasure.
    Santa Maria de la Consolacion sank in 1681.

    The treasure was officially discovered in 1997.

    This is one of the coins recovered from the Consolación, authenticated to be genuine.

    Of all the shipwrecks found over the years, this is the only ship that was lost due to pirates and subsequently found. There was also a real pirate ship found, but no treasure was aboard.

    The only real guaranteed pirate booty that isn’t in a museum that a person can own, comes from the Consolación, with very few exceptions.

    I'm BACK!!! Used to be Billet7 on the old forum.

  • rainbowroosierainbowroosie Posts: 4,874 ✭✭✭✭

    Awesome post. Newp.

    "You keep your 1804 dollar and 1822 half eagle -- give me rainbow roosies in MS68."
    rainbowroosie April 1, 2003
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