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    Description

    Attractive Mint State 1804 Fourteen Star Reverse Quarter Eagle

    1804 $2 1/2 14 Star Reverse MS61 PCGS. Breen 6119. R.4. One of the most popular of the Early quarter eagle varieties for the obvious counting error on the reverse. The surfaces have moderate handling marks primarily in the fields, and we note some nicks in the lower left obverse near the stars. The reverse is similar in quality with tiny nicks found in the reflective fields. An average strike for this issue, with minor softness on the curl which flips around and extends over Liberty's cap and on the eagle's tail feathers.
    The curious reverse feature of the extra star came about in 1798. The new heraldic eagle reverse had just been designed by Robert Scot, which tried to mimic the Great Seal. However, on the Great Seal the stars over the eagle are aligned in straight rows, and straight rows of stars don't fit well beneath an arc of clouds. Scot discovered this on several dies which show the stars to be aligned in straight rows, as the stars are very awkwardly placed between the clouds, scroll and eagle's head. On this particular reverse die the stars were placed in straight lines, running parallel to the left wing edge on the eagle. The first star to the left is buried partially under the wing and nearly touches the cloud. Another star needed to be placed right where the eagle's head resides, but this problem was overlooked. In the straight row above the eagle's head five stars extend from clouds to scroll. The final row near the clouds on the right employed three more stars for a total of fourteen. Apparently this error was noticed and the die not used in 1798. However, by 1804 either the error was forgotten or nobody cared as this reverse was used to coin both quarter eagles and dimes of 1804 (both of which were the exact same size and used the same reverse design). The quarter eagles are available but the dimes with the fourteen star reverse are quite rare. For the collector, this is one of the most popular coins to obtain and a standout from the regular design issues. The combined NGC and PCGS population reports show 14 coins graded this high with only eight pieces graded finer of this variety.(#7652) (Registry values: P6) (NGC ID# BFVT, PCGS# 7652)

    Weight: 4.37 grams

    Metal: 91.67% Gold, 8.33% Copper


    Learn more at the Newman Numismatic Portal at Washington University in St. Louis.

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    Auction Dates
    January, 2005
    12th-15th Wednesday-Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 8
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