The Numismatic Bibliomania Society



The E-Sylum: Volume 26, Number 46, November 12, 2023, Article 21


Davissons is holding their E-Auction 48 on December 6th. Here's Allan Davisson's introductory note to the catalog. -Editor

Davissons E-Auction 48 catalog front Welcome to E-Auction 48

Our first print catalog published the summer of 1973 included an opening note. Since then, I think the record is pretty much unbroken—opening comments, about the catalog or related issues. In a print catalog, each bit of space represents some real estate that might be used to offer things for sale. So, clearly, communicating with you has always been a high priority for us.

Everyone here has focused for many weeks on putting this catalog together. So, for us this note is a wrap-up. For you the reader it provides an overview before you start to turn the pages or change the screen.

  • Gold: We have an appealing group: choice Byzantine with an exceptional histamenon nomisma (Lot 5); some small one-ounce proofs with interesting topics, hundred-year-old (more or less) gold including three particularly high-grade slabbed pieces, and some interesting US material including a Dahlonega 1851 piece.
  • Greek and Roman: Some appealing and affordable Greek pieces, including a handsome tetradrachm of Lysimachos and many old collection-toned and patinated pieces… The Roman section is particularly worth study—Republican brockage errors and Republican issues, interesting Provincial and very nice Imperial denarii, antoninianii, and folles; look closely at the issues of the Third and Fourth Centuries—a comprehensive covering of most of the reigns, all handsome coins carefully selected from one particularly discerning collector's efforts.
  • Britain: Some Anglo-Saxon including an appealing piece from the reign of Offa followed by a William II penny that looks better in hand than in the photo. Scotland, Ireland and the Anglo-Gallic issues form a small part of the sale but all these are areas that have not shown up much in recent sales. Five Irish hammered coins may not sound like much but that particular series has always been the scarcest of the British issues and five decent pieces is worth mention. The Irish penny of John is fascinating in its design and the Irish silver farthing is an almost impossible piece to find in any condition. Both are estimated conservatively—neither has shown up recently enough that I was able to find any parallels.
  • D&H Tokens: Our Summer 1973 catalog offered about a dozen pieces from the series and they have been an important part of our focus ever since. (Recently I watched, and did some bidding, in the Patrick Deane III sale and kept notes on the winning bidder numbers. So many went to the same number that I am sure there were many frustrated bidders in the room and online.) In our sale herein, you will find some particularly appealing Scottish and Irish tokens, most of which are scarce even if Dalton & Hamer don't say so.
  • Lincoln cents: Many of us began collecting when someone gave us a Whitman penny board and we started looking through rolls of pennies to fill all the holes. It was pretty easy to fill the later boards and albums (1941 to date) until Whitman decided to include the 1955 double-die. The double-die '55 piece offered here is the first I have handled and it is choice—AU58, a grade I consider more desirable than a low number MS piece. The three 1943 zinc-coated steel pieces look amazing—surfaces unlike the hundreds of steel pieces that we usually see. (I still find Lincoln cents fascinating. It was a pleasure to get this series to have and handle even briefly.)
  • The rest of the sale speaks for itself—unusual items, historic items, large lots that include many worthwhile coins. These lots offer pieces of not enough value to warrant offering as a single piece in a print sale but their historic nature and appeal remain.

Finally, this catalog represents an end to two of the most interesting and important consignments we have handled:

Davissons E-Auction 48 catalog back The Frank Robinson Collection of English milled coins, a collection that has helped fill our auctions for several years. The Maundy sets, lots 188 to 193, are the last items we have from this substantial and exhaustive collection of milled coins. Frank is a particularly knowledgeable collector/dealer who formed the collection over many years and we were fortunate and privileged to be able to handle it.

The other major consignment has been The Patrick Zabel Collection. I knew Patrick well. We often conversed and I provided many pieces to his collections. He knew many of the dealers, particularly small-firm specialists like we were, and built an outstanding Anglo-Saxon collection along with lesser—but still impressive—collections of Spanish American issues and representations of other historic areas. He built his collections with a discerning eye and on a budget, carefully acquiring choice material over many years.

We have already begun putting together our early 2024 sale, our next signature annual sale where we offer some of the best that we find. There is still room for more. We will appreciate your consignment and handle it as best we can.

For more information, or to bid, see:
Welcome to E-Auction 48 (

Davisson E-Sylum ad E-Auction-48

Lovmo ad 2023-11-12 Korean book

Wayne Homren, Editor

NBS ( Web

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