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Updated on 01/09/24

1/2 oz. Mexican Silver

In 1991, the Mexican Mint added four fractional-sized Mexican Silver Libertads to the bullion series.

The new sizes included the 1/2 oz., 1/4 oz., 1/10 oz., and 1/20 oz.

Mexican Independence

Libertad, translated in English, means "Freedom."'

The Libertad is a symbol of Mexico's Independence; Mexico won independence from Spain on August 24th, 1821.

However, this is not the date of its celebrated 'Independence Day,' that date is September 16th.

On September 16th, 1810, Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, a Catholic priest, started the Mexican War of Independence when he gave his famous speech 'Grito de Dolores' or 'Cry of Delores,' named after the town in Guanajuato where it took place.

He rang the bell of his church to get the town's attention, and he called on the people to rise against their Spanish-European occupiers.

Note: Outside of Mexico, 'Cinco de Mayo' is frequently misinterpreted as Mexico's Independence Day, which it isn't, 'Cinco de Mayo' celebrates the Mexican victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862.

Design of the
1/2 oz. Mexican Silver Libertad


1/2 oz. Silver Mexican Libertad Obverse

All Fractional Silver Libertads feature a slightly different design on the obverse side from their full-ounce(s) counterparts.

The Design is the National Coat of Arms of Mexico.

The Coat of Arms is a Mexican Golden Eagle perched upon a cactus with a snake in its beak.

Below the Eagle is a wreath, half made of oak leaves and the other half made of laurel leaves.

Above the Eagle are the words "ESTADOS UNIDOS MEXICANOS," Mexico's official name in the Spanish language.

The edge on the Silver Libertad is Reeded.

Coin Photo courtesy of SD Bullion


Half oz. Silver Mexican Libertad Reverse

The reverse side of the Silver Libertad features the "Winged Victory" Angel towering above the volcanoes Popocatépetl and Iztaccihuatl.

Across the top perimeter of the 1/2 oz Silver Libertad is "1/2 ONZA" (ounce), "PLATA PURA" (pure silver), along with the "Year of Issue," and the word "Ley .999", representing the silver purity of the Libertad.

The 'M under an O' inscribed near the left wing of the Winged Angel is the Mint Mark of the Mexican Mint.

The 1/2 oz. Mexican Silver Libertad does not have a Face Value.

Coin Photo courtesy of SD Bullion

The Mexican Libertad is a Round,
Not a Coin

The Mexican Libertad is technically a Bullion "Round" and Not a Bullion "Coin," the differences are slight but important to know.

Bullion with a "Face Value" is a "Coin" because the term "Coin" is Only used for government-backed legal tender with a Face Value.

Bullion Rounds have no "Face Value" because, in most cases, "Rounds" are manufactured by a private mint or  privately held entity, and No Government backs them. 

There are some exceptions to this rule, for example, the Mexican Libertad.

The Mexican Mint produces Gold and Silver Libertads under the authority of the Central Bank of Mexico (Banco de Mexico) and the Mexican Government.

However, Silver and Gold Libertads are Rounds and Not Coins because they Do Not Have a Face Value.

Learn more about the Differences between Coins and Rounds here.

1/2 oz. Mexican Silver Libertad


IRA approved:......Yes


Face Value:..........No

Silver Content:.....1/2 Troy oz.

Total Weight:.......15.55 grams

Purity:.................99.90% / .999

Diameter:............30.00mm (1991 - 1995)

Diameter:............33.00mm (1996 - Present)

Mint Mark:...........Yes


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Silver Libertad
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1/2 oz. Mexican Silver Libertad 
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The Story Behind the Mexican Coat of Arms

mexican coat of arms

In the early 1300s, an Aztec tribe also known as the Mexica tribe, who had no homeland, wandered around the northern areas of the country, known as Mesoamerica, in search of a place to build their Empire.

As the legend goes, in 1323, the tribe's leader received a vision in a dream that they were to settle at the place where they saw an eagle with a snake in its beak, while perched at the top of a prickly pear cactus.

Two years later, the dream was fulfilled on a swampy island, in Lake Texcoco.

Scouts for the tribe found the eagle, snake, and cactus in the same fashion that the leader described to them, in his vision.

This is where the tribe settled and built the city of Tenochtitlan, (tuh·nowch·teet·laan) which became the center of the Aztec Empire.

Today, Tenochtitlan is Mexico City.


Click Tenochtitlan Links to see a Portrait of Tenochtitlan in a 3-D reconstruction of the capital of the Aztec Empire and more.

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