Pedro I coronation coin crowns week long sale
An exceptional Brazilian coin made to celebrate the coronation of Pedro I has brought $138,000
Paul Fraser Collectibles, Wednesday 2 May 2012
An exceptionally rare 19th century Brazilian coin, produced for the coronation of Pedro I, made $138,000 in a sale held between April 25-May 1 in Chicago.
The coin was the crowning glory of the week long sale, which featured an array of rare world and ancient coins.
The 6,400 reiss piece was produced at short notice to mark the inauguration of Pedro I, who founded the Brazilian Empire.
Pedro, an exiled member of the Portuguese royal family, lived in Portugal for only a short time before his country was invaded by the French in 1808. He and his family fled, seeking refuge in their colony of Brazil.
Pedro was reportedly loved by his citizens and liberated Brazil from the Portuguese Cortes in September 1822, when the court sent notice that it would not accept his offers of self-governance. The Brazilian population still celebrate their independence on September 7 each year, the date of his famous "Independence or Death!" speech.
The coin is one of only 64 ever made; Pedro disliked being portrayed as a Roman emperor with a laurel wreath around his head. It was made to be given to guests of honour at his inauguration ball on December 1, 1822.
Another coin, also Brazilian and made in 1822, sold for an identical price of $138,000. The 6,400 reiss depicts the King Joao VI, father of Pedro I. It was to Pedro I that King Joao VI lost the colony of Brazil and was later deposed by his other son, King Miguel I of Portugal.
The coins represent a unique and troubled time in the country's history, with prices heightened due to their sentimentality to Brazilians and rarity. This comparable Charles I coin from Paul Fraser Collectibles was created in a besieged city during the English civil war, a pivotal point in English history.
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Images: Heritage Auctions