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geejay50

Varieties of Scheepjesgulden Fractions (One Eighth Gulden)

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geejay50

Hello all,

 

There is not much that is really new in South African Numismatics in terms of coin varieties and one can be excused for getting bored.

 

I have been collecting the shipsguldens over the past five or so years and have increasingly realised that the classification of the one eighth and one sixteenth needs a revamp to say the least.

 

These coins are as we all know probably the first coins that circulated in the currency starved early Cape after the second British Occupation of the Cape by Major-General David Baird in January 1806 . He put these fractions into circulation although they really had been minted by De Mist for the Batavian Republic (now defunct).- see pg 28 Engelbrecht "Money in South Africa"

 

I will start with the one eighth gulden that falls under one category in NGC and in a later posting address the one sixteenth gulden.

 

Although NGC gives it one category and refers to S-494 ?Scholten, the official coin catelogue of Netherlands Indies 1594 - 1949 (Courtesy of the Late Dr Frank Mitchell)mentions a smaller version of the same coin but without the circle around the value.

 

I propose two different coins in support of the official Dutch Catalogue and will take this up with NGC although they might not like to change. It has taken a while to get specimens of both types in graded form as they are really scarce and popular but as you can see from the pics, they are very different coins. Apart from the ring ?rope around the value , can you see other differences?

 

There is more to this then meets the eye !!!

 

Geejay

Edited by geejay50

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Guest Guest

Fascinating but in the slipstream :)

 

Hi Georg

 

There is no doubt the shipsgulden circulated across the entire trade route to China but they were NOT indigenous to South Africa (ie minted for specific use in South Africa).

 

Neither were the early 1800 coins of the British crown nor others (like VOC) that passed our shores and were used in early South Africa in like manner. They were simply a form of exchange - like the global US$ is today.

 

Furthermore, like the 1874 Burgerspond, they were elitist - and I doubt if any of these coins were ever used in a trade in the Cape by anyone outside the passing sailors or traders who dealt with them in Cape Town.

 

Like you I love the coins but their history is in the slipstream - not the mainstream of South African numismatics.

 

Kind regards

 

Scott Balson

Edited by ndoa18

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geejay50

There is no doubt the shipsgulden circulated across the entire trade route to China but they were NOT indigenous to South Africa (ie minted for specific use in South Africa).

 

Neither were the early 1800 coins of the British crown nor others (like VOC) that passed our shores and were used in early South Africa in like manner. They were simply a form of exchange - like the global US$ is today.

 

Furthermore, like the 1874 Burgerspond, they were elitist - and I doubt if any of these coins were ever used in a trade in the Cape by anyone outside the passing sailors or traders who dealt with them in Cape Town.

 

Like you I love the coins but their history is in the slipstream - not the mainstream of South African numismatics

 

Dear Scott,

 

The topic of this posting is Varieties of Sheepjesgulden and you have again digressed (please take note Cuan)

 

The Ships Guildens were minted in far greater numbers than Burgersponden (at least 14,976 of the fractions vs 873 - Engelbrecht Money in South Africa Pg 26, 28) and were released for circulation by Baird for the English in 1806 after his famous Proclamation. A similar Proclamation at the same time was made in Australia for the same time by that Governor to standardise the polyglot of different currencies circulating. It was a chronic shortage of small currency that generated this. That is the quite the opposite to 'elitism' but for what the every day person needed money for - to buy bread, meat, clothes etc and was a means to an end. Numismatics is a recent elitist past time and people did not think of writing down which denominations were used at the time so you will never get an answer. Nowhere do you get texts telling us which Ancient Greek or Roman coin circulated and which did not , it is taken as a given from the state of wear and the places of discovery.Yet no-one disputes their status as having been used for trade. Yet you demand proof of circulation of these Ships Guldens?

 

By 1806, the Cape Colony had spread to aroundabout the Fish River in the East and if you read Francois Le Vaillaint who as an employee of the VOC (as a "constabelsmaat")travelled East of Cape Town from 1781 to 1784, found farmhouses as far as Algoa Bay and farmers were cutting wood in the Outeniqua Area for sending to Cape Town by ox wagon. The Cape Colony was already in expansion 600 Km East of Cape Town by the end of the 1700s despite the policy of the VOC. Money was used for trade and the demand for provisions for passing ships gave the farmers a ready market. No-one will for the benefit of modern numismatists tell us exactly what denomination was used etc.We have fragmentary evidence.

 

Please stick to the topic

 

Geejay

Edited by geejay50

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dennrein

Le Vaillant

 

Speaking of Le Vaillant, there is an interesting passage for SA numismatics in an English translation of his Travels (1796, volume 3, p. 435) which I couldn't find in the French original. What coins do you think he is referring to:

 

"When I arrived in Amsterdam, on my return to Europe, happening to mention to one of them that small money was wanting at the Cape, and that the internal trade of the colony was injured by this want, the directory ordered, in consequence, a coinage, as I have said elsewhere, of different small silver pieces, to the amount of two or three hundred thousand livres; and so speedily was the business executed, that the money was actually sent away before I even knew that it was in the mint."

 

Sorry for going off topic.

 

Regards

dennrein

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le Vaillant

 

Hi Dennrein

 

I have the English and French versions of his books and can confirm what you say is right on the money (although the extract in the English version does go to page 436).

 

You will notice on page 438 le Vaillant talks about bartering oxen because that is how trade was done back then beyond Cape Town; and "It must be known then, that horses are never shod either at the Cape or in any part of the Colony. (page 439) Their hoofs are so hard, whatever the road they travel, they are always bare."

 

and on page 457 le Vaillant pays the Hottentots in money / barter...

 

"My caravan was considerably diminished. The Hottentot cattle-dealers, after having passed the river, had repaired to their respective hordes , leaving only two of their party in the camp, to wait for me, and receive in money or in kind the value of the tobacco they had sold me at the range."

 

and page 468

 

"Being extremely lean, and little calculated for the yoke in their present condition, I offered them to the company's butcher, who paid me at the rate of seven rix-dollars per head, or about thirty livres French money."

 

le Vaillant was extremely controversial then and considered a "k****r lover" (my editing) because he spent a lot of time in the company of the Hottentots, took a Hottentot woman as a lover, sympathised with them and their challenges post 1652, and was quite infamous for the nude images of a Hottentot woman and man carried in his book .. many of which were defaced by "religious" Victorians endeavouring to keep up their "morals".. I should make it quite clear that the use of the words "k****r lover" are in no way meant to be disparaging to any group but simply reflect what the white population in Cape Town felt at this time - records show this quite clearly. The words are offensive but they are historically correct.

 

I found many of le Vaillant's reports extremely useful - assisting me in writing my book "Children of the Mist".

 

le Vaillants book can be seen at: The Early Days - early first hand reports and research related to the Griquas

 

and a defaced image of a nude Hottentot man at: http://www.tokencoins.com/book/vaillant2.jpg (I should mention that the early images of Hottentots by artists were clearly based on the European model as they had no clear description to work from - that followed in the 1800s with excellent artistic works by the likes of Angas and his book "The Kafirs Illustrated".. see Easy Reading of the Griqua's History (I am fortunate to have the original hand coloured prints of Hottentots that came from the original 1847 book)

 

I have loaded one of the original hand painted prints by Angas of an elderly Hottentot at this link: http://www.tokencoins.com/book10/angas.jpg

 

Hope this is not off topic as I think many will find it historically of interest.

 

Kind regards

 

Scott Balson

Edited by ndoa18

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qball

Please stick to the topic folks....

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4kids

 

I propose two different coins in support of the official Dutch Catalogue and will take this up with NGC although they might not like to change. It has taken a while to get specimens of both types in graded form as they are really scarce and popular but as you can see from the pics, they are very different coins. Apart from the ring ?rope around the value , can you see other differences?

 

There is more to this then meets the eye !!!

 

Geejay

 

Hi Georg,

 

Not my interest but since no one else bothered to stick to the post and answer... Yes Indeed these would be two very different coins or varieties. The reverse pictures shows the dots between the legends as one dot only and on the other coin two dots, The rim is also reeded on one whilst on the second piece this seems not to be the case.

 

Other differences include the crown design with pearls in different quantities and arrangements, The whole design is different whilst the shield is different, the sword held by the lion is longer in one to name the few I've picked up.

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geejay50

Thanks Jan,

Apart from the missing rope around the value that is obvious, the reverse is rotated far more in the one than the other. I havent seen enough of the two varieties to know whether they kept on doing this. I will let you know what NGC says.

 

Georg

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