COINS of Ecuador

Here is my limited Ecuadorian coin collection.
(a total of three specimens!)

Ecuador achieved complete independence in 1822 thru the Venezulan liberator: Simon Bolvar.
It was part of Gran Columbia, like many other Central American nations, until they broke away in 1830.
One of Bolivar's Generals: Jose de Sucre liberated the city of Guayaquil in 1820; he is featured on some of the country's 1 sucre coins of the 1880's and 1890's.


click on the coin for a pix showing obverse & reverse 

coin pix coin history country history

Ecuador 2 Hills Design
4 reales, 1841

Daniel Sedwick Auction
October 2011, lot# 1107


This is the Republic of Ecuador's 1st coin design.

Known as the "Two Hills Design" it was issed on 1/2 - 2 reales starting in 1833.

Due to the large number of counterfeit "Two Hills" 2 reales, their production was halted on 11 Oct, 1841 and the 4 reales of this design was authorized on Nov 2nd, 1841 to remove them from circulation. Mintage commenced on 30 Nov and to discourage counterfeiting the 4R's had a very crude raised lettered edge: "MORAL INDUSTRIA".

They were well received by the public and were issued 1841 thru 1843.

fineness = .666 silver, 13.3 gr.
assayer: Miguel Vergara hence the "M.V."


"For some time everyone has complained that no money circulates in this place other than counterfeit. The green and red pesetas [a peseta is the Spanish equivalent of 2 reales] which appear to have been made of old copper which has been used for the lining of ships are those which go into and come out of the Treasury, with which employees' salaries are paid, with which the government liquidates its debts,... with which merchants settle their accounts" Correo Semanal de Guayaquil, 24 Oct, 1841.

This coin is also a Moneda Feble issue.
none owned at this time

(none)
The 2nd Standard series of Ecuadorian coin design was used on the 1/2R, 2R, 4R and 8R up until the 1850's. R= "reale".

It includes the 1st Ecuadorian crown, an exceptionally beautiful design and issued in only 1846. 1286 (? check) pieces were struck, most of which were apparently placed in circulation. These coins circulated very slightly before being saved and are almost always found in decent condition ranging from good VF to AU. They were 90% silver and as this was the "moneda feble" era gripping South America, circulated as well as a 90% silver quarter would in change in 2012. This coin is frequently available in grades up to & including AU but true UNCs are uncommon (but exist).

It basically looks just like a US Capped Bust dollar so for those of you who wanted a Capped bust dollar this is the piece to buy.

I'm looking for one of these 1846 8R's to buy so if you know of one I'd appreciate it. Having missed the NGC-64 specimen in Millennia and another raw specimen grading (my guess ms-63) in 2010, I guess I'll just have to be patient and wait for one?


Ecuador, 5 francs, 1858
uncirculated (NGC-65)
(called 5 francos in recent literature)
(M.L. Teller, , 2002)

A brief history about the 1858 5 Francs.

At the time between 1833 and 1858 the Ecuadorian silver coinage was debased. Now (after the liberation from Spain) it was time to be a part of a world market of industrialized nations in exchange for finished goods and raw material including silver coinage. The Ecuadorian government could not even begin the process of modernization without a quantity of coins of sufficiently high fineness to finance foreign exchange. As a result the debased silver would have to be withdrawn from circulation and replaced with a silver crown of 0.900 fineness. So the 5 Francs 1858 crown materialized but could never be sustained for circulation. The great mass of the poor could not make transactions without being defrauded by merchants in the market place.



  Counterfeiting existed (0.666 silver) and the import of coining machinery from the United States could not take place to replace the discredited "moneda feble", of 0.666 silver). Then disaster struck at the Quito Mint and there was not even the old machinery left to produce coinage. The 5 Francs were quickly withdrawn from circulation and counterfeit coins increased due to the lack of government issued coinage in circulation.

Do you really want to learn more about the history of Ecuadorian coinage in English? Get a copy of Michael Anderson's book "A Numismatic History of Ecuador". Excellent!!!

from Chuck Helfand


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If someone will sell me another Ecuadorian coin I'd have more to display here! At auction, the early "2 Mountain" 1 to 2 reale types bring excessively high prices in nice condition: e.g. $18,000.

Un Sucre, 1890 UNC


Actually I do have another Ecuadorian coin: this is a much more recent 1 sucre piece. These are not expensive coins in ms but are not extremely common. I will always buy these (in ms) if offered at reasonable prices.



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