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Lot
7127

1796 $2 1/2 No Stars AU58 NGC. Breen-6113, Type of Bass-...

2004 August Pittsburgh, PA Signature Sale #352

 
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Auction Ended On: Aug 20, 2004
Item Activity: 7 Internet/mail/phone bidders
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Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Description:
Legendary Borderline Uncirculated 1796 No Stars Quarter Eagle
1796 $2 1/2 No Stars AU58 NGC. Breen-6113, Type of Bass-3002, R.5. One of two die marriages known for this famous numismatic issue. The claw and arrowheads are slightly more distant from the UN in UNITED than on the extremely rare type of Bass-3003. It isn't known for certain why 963 Quarter Eagles were struck in 1796 without obverse stars, the only such issue for the entire denomination aside from a pair of 20th century commemoratives. The Capped Bust Right type had previously been struck in larger format on the Half Eagle and Eagle, and both of these bore obverse stars. Perhaps the best explanation offered is that the punch intended for the obverse stars was broken or otherwise unavailable. What is known is that the 1796 No Stars is the rarest gold type coin, even more difficult to locate than the 1808 Quarter Eagle which represents the sole issue of the Capped Bust Left design.

Given its scant mintage, it is not a surprise that the present near-Mint example has moderately prooflike fields. The centers are not fully struck, however, the eagle's wings, head, and fletchings have exquisite details. There are no abrasions that can be mentioned to provide a pedigree, and a miniscule toning fleck at 5 o'clock must suffice for this purpose. A whisper of highpoint friction on the portrait precludes an Uncirculated grade, although the fields offer no breaks in luster. An imposing piece that will be a standout acquisition to the finest cabinet of U.S. gold coins.(#7645) (Registry values: P10) (NGC ID# 25F2, PCGS# 7645)

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