MCMVII Wire Rim High Relief Twenty, MS66
1907 $20 High Relief, Wire Rim MS66+ NGC. But coming here
has been a wonderful experience, surprising in many respects, one
of them being to find how much of an American I am.
-- Augustus Saint-Gaudens
Saint-Gaudens made this observation when he returned to Paris in 1886. His father was born in France, he attended the École des Beaux-Arts, and spoke fluent French. But his professional life had been consumed by the design and completion of one after another monumental sculptural works of particularly American subjects. When President Roosevelt tapped Saint-Gaudens to partially redesign America's coinage, the sculptor had one foot firmly planted in European artistic heritage and the other in the newness and vibrancy of the American century that dawned in 1900. This twofold influence is best exemplified by the High Relief double eagle of 1907. Clearly influenced by the Nike of Samothrace on exhibit in the Louvre, Saint-Gaudens took this Classical Greek statue and remodeled it into the Liberty that precedes General Sherman, now seen at the entrance to Central Park. He used this same figural element and Old World/New World dichotomy to create the design of the double eagle. Liberty strides boldly forward into the dawn of a new era with the sun rising behind her.
This is a magnificently preserved example of what is undoubtedly the best-designed and most attractive coin ever struck. The glowing, yellow-gold, satiny surfaces show no contact marks on the obverse, and on the reverse there is only a small cluster on the sun. The wire rim is almost complete around each side. Exceptional quality. Census: 25 in 66, 8 finer (6/12).(Registry values: N10218) (NGC ID# 26F2, PCGS# 9135)
Weight: 33.44 grams
Metal: 90% Gold, 10% Copper
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Revised Edition by James L. Halperin, Mark R. Borckardt, Mark Van Winkle, Jon Amato, and Gregory J. Rohan, with special contributor David W. Akers
The Coinage of Augustus Saint-Gaudens is an issue-by-issue examination of these two artistically inspired series of gold coins.
Each date and mintmark is reviewed with up-to-date information, much of which has never been previously published. The book is based on
two extraordinary collections: The Phillip H. Morse collection and the Dr. and Mrs. Steven L. Duckor collection.
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