Elizabeth I Silver Four Testerns, "Portcullis Money" from the East India Company (1558-1603).
Tower mint, mint mark O (both sides).
Obverse: Crowned quartered shield of arms, crowned E to left, crowned R to right, with beaded circles and Latin legend surrounding: O:ELIZABETH. D:G: ANG: FRA: ET. HIB; REGINA.
Reverse: Crowned portcullis with chains, beaded circles and Latin legend surrounding: O:POSVI. DEVM. ADIVTOREM. MEVM. (Inverted die axis).
Pridmore 2; S.2607B.
13.6 gram, 35 mm in diameter.
Well struck for the issue, on a large full round flan, evenly toned, a good very fine.
*Trade coins of the four denominations of Eight, Four, Two and One silver Testerns were an attempt at producing a trade coinage sponsored by the newly formed East India Company to be used in overseas trade, to rival the Spanish equivalent Eight, Four, Two and One Reales. The testerns were struck to the weights of their equivalent Spanish counterparts. However the competition against the tried and tested Spanish Reales series was too much and ultimately the coinage did not succeed, rendering the surviving coins a rarity.
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