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1818 Capped Bust Left Half Eagle
Rare 5D over 50, BD-3 Variety
Only Two Finer Coins at PCGS

1818 $5 5D Over 50 MS63 PCGS. CAC. Breen-6472, BD-3, R.5. Bass-Dannreuther Die State a/a. The Capped Bust Left half eagle was the only gold denomination struck in 1818, after a hiatus of three years, with a substantial mintage of 48,588 pieces. There are three die varieties known for the date, all of them scarce-to-rare and easily recognized. This coin represents the most elusive of the three die marriages, the BD-3 variety, with the D in the denomination punched over a 0. The error probably occurred when a 0 punch was mistaken for a D, as it seems unlikely that a half eagle die would be confused with a half dollar. This was the only use of the obverse die, but the reverse was employed the following year to coin the famous 1819 BD-1 variety. The 5D/50 variety was first noticed in 1906, when the Chapman brothers cataloged a specimen in lot 205 of the Harlan. P. Smith sale:

"1818 Erratic stars, one being placed beneath the lower curl of hair near the date. Rev. The D in the denomination has been cut over the letter 0 showing that the die sinker originally made it 50 instead of 5D. Uncir. Mint lustre."

The rare BD-3 variety probably accounted for no more than 7,500-10,000 pieces of the reported mintage, and PCGS estimates the surviving population at 25-35 examples. PCGS and NGC have combined to certify a total of 21 specimens in all grades, with PCGS grading five coins in MS63, with two finer, and NGC recording two submissions at the Select level, with a single piece finer (11/11).
The present coin is an attractive Select specimen, with vivid orange-gold surfaces that show highlights of lilac and few signs of contact. The design elements are sharply rendered throughout, with complete star centrils and fine definition on the hair and eagle's feathers. This coin possesses outstanding eye appeal and vibrant mint luster to complement its unusual die characteristics and historical interest.
Ex: ANA National Money Show (Superior, 3/2000), lot 843..
From The Harvey B. Jacobson, Jr. Collection.(Registry values: P4) (NGC ID# BFXW, PCGS# 8120)

View all of [The Harvey B. Jacobson, Jr. Collection ]

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Auction Dates
January, 2012
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 13
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