1839 $10 Type of 1840, Small Letters XF40 PCGS. 1839 Small Letters. XF40 PCGS. Attractive for the grade with traces of orig...
Elusive 1839 Small Letters Eagle1839 $10 Type of 1840, Small Letters XF40 PCGS. 1839 Small Letters. XF40 PCGS. Attractive for the grade with traces of original prooflike surface surviving around the stars, letters, numerals, and other protected areas of the designs. Pale olive-gold toning complements both surfaces. The assigned mintage for the variety is 12,447 pieces as opposed to 25,801 for the "Large Letters" type. The numismatist should not suppose that the designations "Large Letters" and "Small Letters" simply refer to minor distinctions between two closely related varieties; to the contrary, the two different varieties of 1839 are in actuality different design types, and therefore a complete collection of Liberty eagles requires examples of both types. The varieties can best be distinguished by Liberty's portrait, which is radically different on the two varieties. On the "Large Letters" variety, Liberty's truncation is more sharply curved, the bust ends over the left edge of the date, and the tip of the coronet is beneath the 6th star. This is the same portrait of Liberty as used on the 1838 eagle. On the "Small Letters" variety, Liberty's truncation is less radically curved, the bust ends well to the left of the date, and the tip of the coronet is to the right of the 6th star. This is the same portrait of Liberty as was used in 1840 and later years. (#8580) (Registry values: N2998) (NGC ID# 262F, PCGS# 8580)
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