This rare type of British Colonial Dollar has a heart-shape cut out from a Peruvian 8-Reales 1753 coin. This particular dollar originated in Gibraltar and was present in Dominica and Martinique in the Caribbean in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Spanish silver pieces-of-eight were the standard currency in Dominica and East Caribbean. In Dominica various holes were cut out of them to create different values – before 1813 a “bit” was worth 9 pence and there were 11 bits to a holed dollar, 12 1/2 bits to an unholed dollar. The values then changed and finally in 1843 sterling became the official currency in Dominica. Martinique had been returned to France in 1815 in the treaty concluding the Napoleonic War.
British Colonies (Dominica, Gibraltar, Martinique), Dollar, valued variously at 10-Bitts or 11-Bitts, a blunt heart shape cut from the centre of a Peru, Lima, 8-Reales, 1753 (KM 20 (Martinique); Pridmore, type IV, no.16 (Dominica); EL M1 (Martinique); research by Bob Lyall shows the pieces originated in Gibraltar), extremely fine, rare
Estimate: 2,000 GBP – 2,500 GBP
Thank you Spink & Sons for the auction text and image