NGC-certified Portuguese Coin Expected to Sell for Six Figures in Numisma Auction

Posted on 9/22/2020

A 16th-century gold coin graded by NGC is the centerpiece of a September sale.

An exceptionally rare coin from the Portuguese Empire certified by Numismatic Guaranty Corporation® (NGC®) has the highest estimate of over 300 coins being offered in a sale by Numisma, a respected auction house in Portugal. Online bidding is underway for Auction 124, which ends September 30, 2020.

The Portugal 1565 Gold 500 Reais graded NGC MS 63 has an estimate of €170,000 (about $200,000 USD). There are only two of the 1565-dated examples known.

Portugal 1565 Gold 500 Reais graded NGC MS 63
Click images to enlarge.

It is denominated as 500 Reais or 1 Engenhoso. The inscription bordering the coin’s reverse, ‘IN HOC SIGNO VINCES,’ means “in this sign shalt thou conquer.” The coin was struck in an era when Portugal had significantly expanded its global presence.

The coin was struck for King Sebastian of Portugal, who ruled from 1557 to 1578 as the penultimate Portuguese monarch of the House of Aviz. During his reign, he strengthened ties with the Holy Roman Empire, England and France, carried Portugal through the Lisbon plague of 1569, and revolutionized the military organization model. Though he was presumed to have died in battle in 1578, people prayed for his return to revitalize Portugal.

Numisma has offered some of the most esteemed Portuguese coin collections since its founding in 1976. The September sale will mark its 44th anniversary.

NGC has certified more than 47 million coins, including thousands from Portugal. Explore coins from Portugal and elsewhere around the world at

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