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Glossy Near-Mint 1793 Half Cent, C-4, B-41793 1/2 C AU58 PCGS. CAC. C-4, B-4, R.3. Manley Die State 2.0. The obverse die of the Breen-4 pairing was first used to strike the C-3, B-3 half cents. The 7 in the date is short. The L in LIBERTY is too low and it is above the juncture of the hair and brow. The juncture of the neck and bottom hair curl makes a sharp curve. On the reverse of the B-4 pairing, the U in UNITED and the last A in AMERICA are distant from the stem ends. The stem themselves are the longest of any 1793 reverse. A leaf tip appears under the right side of the E in UNITED, another under the left base of the last A. The four ends of the ribbon are quite long and wispy, trailing down nearly to the rim at each point. This is the usually seen die state, with a rust lump on top of the 7 and clash marks visible between Liberty's hair and the cap.
The 1793 half cents were produced to the extent of 35,334 pieces--interestingly, this amount is statistically, if not exactly, equal to the number of 1793 Chain cents produced. The half cents were made using two obverse and three reverse dies in four combinations, all of roughly equal rarity today, in the R.3 range,
This 1793 half cent is predominantly light olive-tan, with splashes of dark steel on each side surrounding the devices. The reverse has been cleaned and recolored, showing traces of light orange-copper color. The surfaces exhibit a glossy appearance, but microscopic evidence exists of scratches and other roughness.
We are unable to trace the provenance of this memorable example, although it is neither the Norweb coin nor the Earle, M. Holmes, Gardner, nor Bareford coins in the Breen Census from the half cent Encyclopedia. Population: 15 in 58, 21 finer (6/10). MRB XF45.
From The Dr. and Mrs. Claude Davis Collection.(Registry values: P8) (NGC ID# 2222, PCGS# 1000)
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