South America, possibly Bolivia, Silver Ingot

In 1545 the first large silver mines of the New World were discovered in the Cerro de Potosí, in what is Bolivia today. Other discoveries followed: 1546 in Zacatecas, 1548 in Guanajuato, 1549 in Taxco, 1551 in Pachuca, 1555 in Durangi, 1569 in Fresnillo. Until 1660, about 3.5 million kilograms of silver were shipped from Mexico to Spain. They tripled the European silver supplies and boosted in the Old World the first big inflation of Modern Times. However: not all of the Spanish silver galleons made their way safely home. This silver ingot was found on an unidentified shipwreck supposedly sunken in 1554 off Santo Domingo. As evidence of its long time on the bottom of the sea it displays a little spot of white coral near the edge.

Year of issue

ca. 16. Jh. n. Chr.