As previously noted in articles on the Nova Constellatio pattern coins, there are two 500 unit silver quint coins. The unique Type II Quint was displayed at Bill Burd's table at the Chicago ANA convention last week.
Tom DeLorey writes:
Apropos Walter Perschke's "Quint" piece, I got the chance to examine it raw on Thursday morning at the ANA. I noticed that there was something engraved above the "500" denomination. He said it was "5 Dec", which he assumed referred to the date December 5th, and perhaps signified the date on which it had been presented.
I suggested that it might refer to "5 Dec(imes)," another way of expressing the 500/1,000th denomination. He said that he had never considered the possibility.
Does anybody know if this possible explanation has been discussed elsewhere?
I saw that too, and wanted to review the Garrett catalog lot description and plate. I first pulled by copy of Bowers' The History of United States Coinage A Illustrated by the Garrett Collection. Holding a magnifier over color plate 13, I could just barely make out the scratches. Next I grabbed a hardcopy of the Garret Sale I. The Type II Quint is on p152-3 lot 621). The scratches are visible in the image, but aren't mentioned in the lot description. It just says "some surface marks" and "some minor evidence of handling".
I don't recall having read anything about this notation before. I regret now not getting an image of the other side of the coin, but I doubt my smartphone camera would have picked up that detail. It was a little hard to see since the coin had already been slabbed by the time I got to view it, but I agree with Tom that it looks like "Dec 5".
I like Tom's "5 decimes" explanation, but have no basis for believing it any more than the "December 5" explanation.
What do readers think? -Editor
To read the earlier E-Sylum articles, see:
1783 NOVA CONSTELLATIO PATTERN COINS ON DISPLAY AT 2011 CHICAGO ANA
WAYNE'S NUMISMATIC DIARY: AUGUST 21, 2011
Wayne Homren, Editor
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