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    Description

    1872 Amazonian Half Dollar, Judd-1200, PR64

    1872 50C Half Dollar, Judd-1200, Pollock-1340, Low R.7, PR64 NGC.
    Design.
    The obverse is of the William Barber Amazonian design. A seated Liberty faces left, holding a sword in her left hand and resting her left arm on a large shield. Her outstretched right hand is on the head of an eagle, wings partially spread, at her feet. Thirteen stars arranged seven and six are before and behind her head, respectively, and the date 1872 is in exergue. The reverse depicts a spread-winged eagle holding three arrows in its right talon and a shield in its left. An olive branch is in front of the shield. The usual national reference is above, with denomination spelled out HALF DOL. below. The scroll crossing the shield reads IN GOD WE TRUST. Struck in silver with a reeded edge.

    Commentary.
    While the critical reviews of William Barber's oeuvre taken as a whole are mixed at best, there is no denying that this so-called Amazonian pattern, produced in only his third year as Mint chief engraver, is a masterful composition that has justly taken its place among the most popular in the entire pattern repertoire.

    Among the various named patterns of the 19th century, the Amazonian constitutes one of the Big Three of U.S. pattern collecting, along with the Shield Earring and Schoolgirl designs. Many collectors of advanced means have endeavored--and endeavor still--to collect at least one example of each design and denomination and/or metal.

    Pattern researcher Saul Teichman of USPatterns.com has been unable to find any reference to the "Amazonian" term that predates the June 1890 sale of the Lorin G. Parmelee Collection by H.P. Smith and David Proskey, catalogers.

    Physical Description.
    Powder-gray, gold, and ice-blue rim highlights accentuate the surfaces that are still silver in portions of the center, with heavier patina on the reverse than the obverse. This lovely near-Gem proof also offers a razor-sharp strike, with bold definition in the ruffled feathers on the reverse eagle's breast and the shield lines, Liberty's hair, and the eagle feathers on the obverse. A small spot of dark toning on Liberty's exposed left breast serves as a pedigree marker. NGC Census: one in 64, five finer including a PR66 Cameo. PCGS Population: 1 in PR64, none finer (12/08).

    Provenance.
    Ex: 1981 FUN (New England Rare Coin Auctions, 1/1981), lot 1178.
    From The Lemus Collection, Queller Family Collection Part Two.


    Coin Index Numbers: (NGC ID# 2A6C, PCGS# 61471)


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

    View all of [The Lemus Collection, Queller Family Collection Part Two ]

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2009
    7th-11th Wednesday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 12
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,669

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