PRESENTATION PIECES, SPORTS AND NOVODELS
In response to Kavan Ratnatunga's query, Howard A. Daniel
III writes: "NCLT (Non Circulating Legal Tender) coins
(and notes) are frequently produced in Southeast Asia in
large to low numbers. For those NCLT made in very low
numbers and often in other than "normal" metals or paper,
the term "Presentation Pieces" is frequently used for them,
and they were made going back a couple of hundred years
in Southeast Asia.
But then there are some very low numbers of pieces made
by employees for their personal profit and they are called
"Sports". I do not know when this name was developed,
but they are often found in price lists and auction catalogs
as "official" errors. But most of the modern Southeast
Asian "errors" are really sports. I hope the above has not
Steve Pellegrini adds: "on reading Kavan Ratnatunga's query
about a more precise term for the Lankan restrikes he
describes, the term 'Novodel' came immediately to mind.
Novodels were special coins produced by the Russian Royal
Mint in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. They were
struck on demand for sale or presentation to favored collectors.
These favored collectors were almost exclusively of the
Russian aristocracy. As one would expect of a Russian Count
or Duke with a hole in his Whitman Folder he would present
the Mintmaster with an order for whatever date, denomination
and composition of coin he desired. If the dies were extant,
fine, if not, new ones were cut. If the coin in question were
so rare that nobody remembered or ever knew how it looked,
then an approximation was produced. Many Novodels were
struck of rare dates in off metals, some were of dates which
had never existed, but which the noble collector felt should
have existed. The characteristic most Novodels shared (aside
from rarity) is whimsy. It appears that in the area of
manufactured rarities the Russian Mint put even the
Philadelphia Mint in far the shade."
Wayne Homren, Editor
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