Spice Islands Shipwreck - 8 Reales

Denomination: 8 Reales                                                                        Reign: Philip IV

Mint: Mexico City                                                                                    Assayer: D

Mount:  14K Diver frame                                                                        

Grade: NGC 4495942-078 

Description: Philip IV "Spice Islands Wreck" Cob 8 Reales (1622-1630) Mo-D Genuine NGC, Mexico City mint (sunk ca. 1630 off Southeast Asia).

History: The Spice Islands wreck is a mystery; whether it was a plate ship or merchant vessel is unclear. What is known is that when the ship became stuck and too damaged to continue her voyage; the crew made the decision to light the ship on fire and scuttle her contents.  

The Spice Islands are a small group of islands NE of Indonesia. An unknown ship is presumed to have sunk circa 1630 leaving behind several chests of 8 Reales minted in Mexico City and Potosi during the reign of King Philip IV of Spain. Given how long it was at the bottom of the sea, this is a good example given the effects saltwater has on silver.