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Lot
979

1796 MEDAL Castorland Medal, Silver XF45 PCGS....

2009 April-May Cincinnati, OH (CSNS) US Coin Auction #1124

 
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Auction Ended On: Apr 30, 2009
Item Activity: 9 Internet/mail/phone bidders
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Location:

Duke Energy Center
525 Elm Street
Cincinnati, OH 45202

Description:
Original 1796 Silver Castorland Medal, XF45
1796 MEDAL Castorland Medal, Silver XF45 PCGS. Breen-1058, W-9100, R.5. The Paris Mint still makes restrikes of these medals, which bear edge-stamping reading ARGENT for silver, OR for gold, and CUIVRE for copper. The originals, as here, have an unbroken reeded edge. Famed 19th century American numismatist W. Elliot Woodward described the Castorland "jetons" or medals thusly in 1867:

"The head on the obverse is that of Cybele, personifying the earth as inhabited and cultivated; the wreath of laurel, the emblem of victory, signifies that the goddess conquers the wildness and ruggedness of nature, and brings earth under the dominion, and subservient to the uses of man. The reverse represents Ceres, who holds in one hand a 'bit', with which she has tapped a sugar-maple--in which a faucet , technically a spile, is inserted to draw off the sap; in her right arm she supports a cornucopia of flowers, and at her feet lies a sheaf of wheat; thus combining, in a single group, emblems of three seasons. In the exergue appears a beaver [Castor in Latin]. The obverse inscription is FRANCO-AMERICANA COLONIA (French-American Colony) with the name Castorland and date 1796; the reverse, SALVE MAGNA PARENS FRUGUM, a quotation from Virgil, may it be rendered 'Hail ! great parent of fruits.' "
Both sides are signed with the imprimatur of the great French medallist Benjamin Duvivier. This example shows silvery surfaces with pinkish-gold patina and good eye appeal. Listed on page 73 of the 2009 Guide Book. (PCGS# 653)

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