Portugal - D. Luís I (1861-1889) - Silver - 50 Réis 1888; G.08.19; Unique ; UNC/EF
The 50 Réis coin from 1888 is unique. It does not exist in the royal collection or in the Casa da Moeda collection. It does not appear in the manufacturing statistics, which only means that no 50 réis coins of any date were produced in 1888. However, the coin exists, is authentic and Numisma is offering this coin for sale. The most plausible explanation is that, having opened the dies of the gold coins for that year, and then the dies for the silver coins, in particular for the 500 and 200 réis, of which large quantities were minted, and also half a million tostões, when the first 50 réis die was opened, already late in the year, it appeared that there was no material possibility of undertaking such minting. Dies are expensive and it has long been known that they were handed over from one year to the next until they became unusable (sometimes in a few days), with statistics being based on manufacturing per year and not on the dates stamped on the dies. Thus, at least one open die with the date 1888 will have been used in 1889, a year of considerable manufacture, which almost equalled that of all the previous years. It should also be noted that the same would have happened for the date 1874, when no manufacturing took place in that year either, but it still exists. The 1888 coin is here to be placed beside the 1874 coin, but the quantity referred to makes one forget the existence of this die, although only one specimen is known so far.