The silver real (Spanish : real de plata) was the currency of the Spanish colonies in America and the Philippines. In the seventeenth century the silver real was established at two billon reals (reales de vellón) or sixty-eight maravedís . Gold escudos (worth 16 reales) were also issued. The coins circulated throughout Spain's colonies and beyond, with the eight-real piece, known in English as the Spanish dollar, becoming an international standard and spawning, among other currencies, the United States dollar. A reform in 1737 set the silver real at two and half billon reals (reales de vellón) or eighty-five maravedís. This coin, called the real de plata fuerte, became the new standard, issued as coins until the early 19th century. The gold escudo was worth 16 reales de plata fuerte.
Spanish or Castilian, is a Romance language that originated in the Iberian Peninsula and today has hundreds of millions of native speakers in Spain and the Americas. It is a global language and the world's second-most spoken native language, after Mandarin Chinese.
The Spanish Empire, historically known as the Hispanic Monarchy and as the Catholic Monarchy, was one of the largest empires in history. From the late 15th century to the early 19th, Spain controlled a huge overseas territory in the New World and the Asian archipelago of the Philippines, what they called "The Indies". It also included territories in Europe, Africa and Oceania. The Spanish Empire has been described as the first global empire in history, a description also given to the Portuguese Empire. It was the world's most powerful empire during the 16th and first half of the 17th centuries, reaching its maximum extension in the 18th century. The Spanish Empire had been called "the empire on which the sun never sets".
The real was a unit of currency in Spain for several centuries after the mid-14th century. It underwent several changes in value relative to other units throughout its lifetime until it was replaced by the peseta in 1868. The most common denomination for the currency was the silver eight-real Spanish dollar or peso which was used throughout Europe, America and Asia during the height of the Spanish Empire.
Coins were produced at mints in Bogotá, Caracas, Guatemala City, Lima, Mexico City, Popayán, Potosí, Santo Domingo and Santiago. For details, see the:
Bogotá, officially Bogotá, Distrito Capital, abbreviated Bogotá, D.C., and formerly known as Santafé/Santa Fe de Bogotá between 1991 and 2000, is the capital and largest city of Colombia, administered as the Capital District, although often erroneously thought of as part of Cundinamarca. Bogotá is a territorial entity of the first order, with the same administrative status as the departments of Colombia. It is the political, economic, administrative and industrial center of the country.
Caracas, officially Santiago de León de Caracas, is the capital and largest city of Venezuela, and centre of the Greater Caracas Area. Caracas is located along the Guaire River in the northern part of the country, following the contours of the narrow Caracas Valley on the Venezuelan coastal mountain range. Terrain suitable for building lies between 760 and 1,140 m above sea level, although there is some settlement above this range. The valley is close to the Caribbean Sea, separated from the coast by a steep 2,200-metre-high (7,200 ft) mountain range, Cerro El Ávila; to the south there are more hills and mountains. The Metropolitan Region of Caracas has an estimated population of 2.923.201.
Guatemala City, locally known as Guatemala or Guate, officially Nueva Guatemala de la Asunción, is the capital and largest city of Guatemala, and the most populous city in Central America. The city is located in the south-central part of the country, nestled in a mountain valley called Valle de la Ermita. It is estimated that its population is about 1 million. Guatemala City is also the capital of the Municipality of Guatemala and of the Guatemala Department.
The real was the currency of Colombia until 1837. No subdivisions of the real existed until after the real had ceased to be the primary unit of currency. However, 8 reales = 1 peso and 16 reales = 1 escudo.
The real was a currency of Mexico, issued until 1897. There were 16 silver reales to 1 gold escudo, with 8 tlacos to the real. The peso, which circulated alongside the real and eventually replaced it, was equal to 8 reales.
The real was the currency of Peru until 1863. Sixteen silver reales equalled one gold escudo. The silver coin of 8 reales was also known as the peso.
After the independence of Spain's colonies, the real was replaced by currencies also denominated in reales and escudos, including the Argentine real, Central American Republic real, Ecuadorian real, Honduran real, Paraguayan real and Santo Domingo real.
The real was the currency of Argentina until 1881. From 1822, it was subdivided into 10 décimos. The sol was also issued during this period and was equal to the real, whilst the peso was worth 8 reales and the escudo was worth 16 reales.
The real was the currency of the Federal Republic of Central America from 1824 to 1838/1841. Sixteen silver reales equaled one gold escudo. The Central American Republic's real replaced the Spanish colonial real at par and continued to circulate and be issued after the constituent states left the Central American Republic. The currency was replaced by the Costa Rican real, Salvadoran peso, Guatemalan peso, Honduran real and Nicaraguan peso.
The real was the currency of Ecuador until 1871. There were no subdivisions but 16 silver reales equalled 1 gold escudo, with the 8 reales coin known as a peso.
From 1572 to 1773 Spanish colonial silver coins were cobs. Initially cut from a silver bar and hammer struck on a coin die, they were accurate in weight, though sometimes debased in precious metal content. However unlike machined coins, they were often irregular in shape, especially if a too-thick coin was clipped by the mint to reach the proper weight. After 1732 similar, but better shaped cobs were produced on screw presses. Cob denominations were 1⁄2, 1, 2, 4, and 8 reales. When circulating in New England the larger coins might be cut to give intermediate values; since a real was nicknamed a "bit", the expression "two bits" came to mean a quarter dollar.
New England is a region composed of six states in the northeastern United States: Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut. It is bordered by the state of New York to the west and by the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick to the northeast and Quebec to the north. The Atlantic Ocean is to the east and southeast, and Long Island Sound is to the south. Boston is New England's largest city, as well as the capital of Massachusetts. Greater Boston is the largest metropolitan area, with nearly a third of New England's population; this area includes Worcester, Massachusetts, Manchester, New Hampshire, and Providence, Rhode Island.
The quarter, short for quarter dollar, is a United States coin worth 25 cents, one-quarter of a dollar. It has a diameter of .955 inch (24.26 mm) and a thickness of .069 inch (1.75 mm). The coin sports the profile of George Washington on its obverse, and its reverse design has changed frequently. It has been produced on and off since 1796 and consistently since 1831.
Unlike in Spain, the copper coins were generally not struck by the colonial mints. Most issued silver coins in denominations of 1⁄4, 1⁄2, 1, 2, 4 and 8 reales and gold coins for 1⁄2, 1, 2, 4 and 8 escudos. Exceptions were the Santo Domingo mint, which did strike maravedíes in the sixteenth century and the Caracas mint which issued fraction of real copper coins in the early nineteenth century to facilitate commerce.
The peso was a monetary unit that originated in Spain and is now the name of the monetary unit of several countries in the Americas and the Philippines. The silver peso worth eight reales was also known in English as a Spanish dollar or piece of eight and was a widely used international trade coin from the 16th to 19th centuries.
The Spanish dollar, also known as the piece of eight or the peso, is a silver coin of approximately 38 mm (1.5 in) diameter worth eight Spanish reales. It was minted in the Spanish Empire following a monetary reform in 1497.
The peso is the currency of Argentina, identified by the symbol $ preceding the amount in the same way as many countries using dollar currencies. It is subdivided into 100 centavos. Its ISO 4217 code is ARS.
Columnarios are silver coins that were minted by Spain from 1732 to 1773 throughout its new colonies in present-day Latin America. While the majority of columnarios were struck in Mexico, smaller mints existed in Guatemala; Lima, Peru; Santiago, Chile; Potosí, Bolivia; and Colombia. The base denomination is an 8 reales coin. Other minor denominations included 4 reales, 2 reales, 1 real, and 1/2 real. The 8 reales coin is the predecessor to the American dollar. Before the United States Mint was in production, columnarios circulated, along with other coinage, in the US colonies, as legal tender until the middle of the 19th century.
The maravedí was the name of various Iberian coins of gold and then silver between the 11th and 14th centuries and the name of different Iberian accounting units between the 11th and 19th centuries.
The peseta was a unit of currency in Catalonia until 1850, when the whole of Spain decimalized. It was also a name used throughout Spain for an amount of 4 reales de vellón.
The peso was a currency of Venezuela until 1874.
The real was the official currency of Gibraltar until 1825 and continued to circulate alongside other Spanish and British currencies until 1898.
The escudo was the name of two distinct Spanish currency denominations.
The Philippine real was the currency of the Philippines during the Spanish Colonial Era. Brought over in large quantities by the Manila galleons, eight silver reales made up a silver peso or a dollar. 16 silver real were equal to one gold escudo.
This article provides an outline of the currency of Spanish America from Spanish colonization in the 15th century until Spanish American independencies in the 19th. This great realm was divided into the Viceroyalty of New Spain, which came to include all Spanish territory north of Panama, the West Indies, Venezuela, and the Philippines, and the Viceroyalty of Peru, which included Panama and all Spanish territory in South America except Venezuela. The monetary system of Spanish America, originally identical to that of Spain, soon diverged and took on a distinctive character of its own, which it passed on to the independent nations that followed after.
The currency of Venezuela has been in circulation since the end of the 18th century. The present currency unit in Venezuela is the Venezuelan bolívar.
Currency in Colombia has been used since 1622. It was in that year, under a licence purchased from King Philip III of Spain, that Turrillo de Yebra established a mint at Santa Fe de Bogotá and a branch mint at Cartagena de las Indias, where gold cobs were produced as part of Colombia's first currency. Silver milled coins date from 1627. In 1831, Gran Colombia dissolved into Venezuela and New Granada. In 1836, in New Granada, new monetary laws were passed, to standardise the money produced in the country. From 1861-1862, due to financial instability, the United States of New Granada accepted British currency, the name of the country becoming the United States of Colombia in 1862. In 1880, Colombia pegged the peso to the gold standard due to the falling price of silver. In 1886, the paper peso was introduced. In 1931, Colombia abandoned the gold standard and switched to the current form of the peso.
The article provides a historical summary of the currency used in Ecuador. The present currency of Ecuador is the United States dollar.
The dobla, including dobla castellana (excelente), gran dobla, dobla de la Banda, dobla cruzada, dobla alfonsi and dobla almohade, was the name of various Iberian gold coins between the 11th and 16th centuries, ranging in value from 2-870 maravedis, depending on the year. The name originated as the "double maravedi", a term used by Castilians for the Muslim dinar, when the maravedí was re-valued as equivalent to the Muslim half-dinar, or masmudina, by Ferdinand III. However, years later, the dobla became various new coins, and at times, a dobla was the same as the newer coins enrique or castellano. In general, a dobla was a valuable gold coin, while the maravedi was de-valued into silver or rarely copper forms. In the 16th century, the dobla was replaced by the ducado, then by the escudo as the standard gold coin of Spain.
The history of Philippine money covers currency in use before the Hispanic era with gold Piloncitos and other commodities in circulation, as well as the adoption of the peso during the Hispanic era and afterwards.
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