1619 - 1630 - Portuguese Ceilão

Silver - Tanga

The silver Tanga with Coat of arms of Portugal and Gridiron of Saint Laurence struck in Colombo, fort São Lourenço for circulation in Ceilão, undated and without mint initial during the reign of D. Filippe II (1598-1621) and D. Filippe III (1621-1640).

Diameter15. mm
Thickness_._ mm
Weight mean2.68 gms
Weight2.27 gms
F2_22.01_obverse F2_22.01_reverse
Codrington PL 113 ; Gomes F2:22.01 ; KM #8
Obverse : Crowned Coat of arms of Portugal within line-dotted-line circles
Reverse : Gridiron of Saint Laurence and flames below within dotted-line-dotted circles.

The emblem of Saint Laurence is the gridiron with the flames below on which he was martyr in 258 AD.

Codrington (VIII-22:c,p.100) lists it among undated silver coins of rough execution with crowned Coat of arms and the Gridiron.
For the undated Ceylon Tangas Codrington (VIII-23:p.102) gives a range of weight from 2.08 to 2.60 grams with a mean of 2.29 grams stating that the standard was probably as high as 2.60 grams.

For this type issued under D. Filippe III (1621-1640) Gomes (F3:16.01) gives a weight range of 2.16-3.2 grams.

The undated gridiron Tangas of this Era followed a small issue of undated Tangas bearing TA monogram and were succeeded by dated issues commencing 1631.

In Grogan section on Ceylon the Tanga is illustrated with (1317) -- 16/15.5 mm and 2.36 grams and attributed to D. Filippe II (1598-1621) with No Date (1619-1630).

Text from
* Ceylon Coins and Currency By H. W. Codrington. Colombo 1924
  Chapter VIII Portuguese - Plate xxx. Page xxx
* The Coins of the Dutch Overseas Territories- 1601-1948
  C. Scholten, 1953, Amsterdam: Jacques Schulman. page xxx-xxx
* Moedas Portuguesas 1128-1988, by Alberto Gomes. Lisbon 1987
* Collection Henry Thomas Grogan, J. Schulman, Auction 23-02-1914.
* Non-Islamic and Western Colonies since 600 AD by by Michael Mitchiner.

I thank Jan Lingen who kindly sent me the 300 dpi scans of these rare coin from his collection and are displayed at xxx dpi.