A SPANISH coin collection featuring ‘arguably the most valuable European coin in existence’ is due to be auctioned in New York next month.
The 37,895 coins – valued between 20-25 million euros – include the only remaining 50 Excelente coin, commissioned by Ferdinand and Isabella in the 15th Century.
Some of the coins were among the first to be minted in the New World as the Spanish colonised the Americas, while others date from the Muslim period in Spain.
Also included is a copy of the Ides of March, coined by the ancient Roman politician Brutus in the year 4 BC to commemorate the assassination of Julius Caesar.
The collection, owned by the Hispanic Society of America, will be sold in a single batch in a sealed bid Sotheby’s auction that ends on March 8.
The rare coins had been offered to the Spanish government prior to the auction but the bid had been rejected as too low.
The collection was originally put together a century ago by American railroad magnate and philanthropist Archer Milton Huntington.