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Word: Definition: Tags: Submitted By: Date Submitted:
commemorative Commemorative coins pay tribute to a notable person, place, thing or event. There are circulating commemoratives and non-concirculating commemoratives. Circulating commemoratives are sent into circulation by the issuing mint while non-circulating commemoratives are sold directly to coin collectors. circulating commemorative non-circulating commemorative circulation mint Nicholas 2010-10-18
circulating commemorative Circulating commemoratives are commemorative coins that are sent into circulation by the issuing mint. Some examples of circulating commemoratives are the United States Statehood quarters issued between 1999 and 2008. The reverse side of Spain's coins from 1980-1982 commemorated the FIFA World Cup. circulation mint Nicholas 2010-10-18
cull A coin in awful condition. Nicholas 2011-05-30
Chapman proof In 1921 the U.S. mint made a small number of proof coins of the Morgan dollar for collector, Henry Chapman. Chapman proof coins have 17 berries in the wreath. Zerbe and Chapman proofs are significant as they were the only proof coins issued for the 1921 Morgan dollar. proof Zerbe proof Nicholas 2011-06-04
Chasing Process by which forgers heat the surface of a coin in order to reshape the metal to create a mint mark on a coin. mint mark Nicholas 2011-06-04
C Mintmark for the cities of: Charlotte, North Carolina (early US gold coins), Ottawa, Canada (British gold coins, Newfoundland coins), Saint Lo (French coins to 1657), Caen (French coins 1693-1771), Castelsarrasin (French coins during WWI and WWII), Frankfurt (German coins), Culiacan (Mexican coins), Cleve (Prussian coins to 1873). EgCollector 2011-06-10
C crowned (mintmark) Mintmark for the city of Cadiz on Spanish coins. EgCollector 2011-06-10
C-Mint Term applied to the gold coins struck at the Charlotte, North Carolina branch Mint. This Mint only struck gold coins from its opening in late 1837 until its seizure by the Confederacy. (Those coins struck in late 1837 were dated 1838.) EgCollector 2011-06-10
CA 1. Short for Cameo. 2. Mintmark for the city of Chihuahua on Spanish-Mexican 8 reales and Mexican coins. Some Royalist Chihuahua mint 8 reales were cast, with very crudely rendered mintmarks EgCollector 2011-06-10
cabinet friction Slight disturbance seen on coins (usually on the obverse) that were stored in wooden cabinets used by early collectors to house their specimens. Often a soft cloth was used to wipe away dust, causing light hairlines or friction. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Calabash Australian (particularly Queensland) term for shinplaster, privately issued paper money used in rural Australia up to the early 1900's. EgCollector 2011-06-10
CAM Short for Cameo. Also, PCGS grading suffix used for 1950 and later Proofs that meet cameo standards. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Cameo The term applied to coins, usually Proofs and prooflike coins, that have frosted devices and lettering that contrast with the fields. When this is deep the coins are said to be "black and white" cameos. Occasionally frosty coins have "cameo" devices though they obviously do not contrast as dramatically with the fields as the cameo devices of Proofs do. Specifically applied by PCGS to those 1950 and later Proofs that meet cameo standards (CAM). EgCollector 2011-06-10
Canadian Slang for the coins and other numismatic items of the Canada. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Canadian silver Slang for the silver coins of Canada. (Mainly struck in 80% fineness.) EgCollector 2011-06-10
Candareen An old Chinese unit of weight, now obsolete, equal to about 0.37 grams. There were 10 candareens to a mace. Chinese silver coins often report their weights in mace and candareens. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Cap Bust Alternate form of Capped Bust EgCollector 2011-06-10
Capped Bust A term describing any of the various incarnations of the head of Miss Liberty represented on early U.S. coins by a bust with a floppy cap. This design is credited to John Reich. EgCollector 2011-06-10
capped die The term applied to an error in which a coin gets jammed in the coining press and remains for successive strikes, eventually forming a "cap" either on the upper or lower die. These are sometimes spectacular with the "cap" often many times taller than a normal coin. EgCollector 2011-06-10
carbon spot A spot seen mainly on copper and gold coins, though also occasionally found on U.S. nickel coins (which are 75 percent copper) and silver coins (which are 10 percent copper). Carbon spots are brown to black spots of oxidation that range from minor to severe - some so large and far advanced that the coin is not graded because of environmental damage. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Carson City Mint Located in Nevada, this mint produced gold and silver coins from 1870-1893. It was closed from 1885-1889 due to a lack of funding. In 1893 the mint was permanently closed due to internal corruption. In 1895 it was found that several employees and prominent community officials were stealing bullion from the mint and this dashed all hopes of the mint ever reopening. Coins minted in Carson City are among the most popular branch-mint issues. This mint uses the "CC" mintmark. EgCollector 2011-06-10
cartwheel 1. The pleasing effect seen on some coins when they are rotated in a good light source. The luster rotates around like the spokes of a wagon wheel. A term applied mainly to frosty Mint State coins, especially silver dollars, to describe their luster. Also, a slang term for a silver dollar. 2. Any large, heavy coin, such as the British pennies and twopences of 1797. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Cash (Chinese coin) The traditional form of coinage in China. A cash coin is round, with a square hole, and normally four Chinese characters around the hole on the obverse. This form of coin was cast (not struck) from around 200 BC up until the early 1900's, with very little change in appearance over the centuries. Cash-style coins were also made in neighbouring countries such as Japan, Korea and Vietnam. EgCollector 2011-06-10
cast blanks Planchets made by a mold method, rather than being cut from strips of metal. EgCollector 2011-06-10
cast counterfeit A replication of a genuine coin usually created by making molds of the obverse and reverse, then casting base metal in the molds. A seam is usually visible on the edge unless it has been ground away. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Castaing machine A device invented by French engineer Jean Castaing, which added the edge lettering and devices to early U.S. coins before they were struck. This machine was used until close collar dies were introduced which applied the edge device in the striking process. EgCollector 2011-06-10
catalog A printed listing of coins for sale either by auction or private treaty. As a verb, to write the description of the numismatic items offered. EgCollector 2011-06-10
CC Mintmark used to signify coins struck at the Carson City, Nevada branch Mint. EgCollector 2011-06-10
CC monogram Mintmark for the city of Besancon (French coins). The two "C"s are entwined back-to-back, making a curved "X" shape. EgCollector 2011-06-10
CCDN Short for Certified Coin Dealer Newsletter EgCollector 2011-06-10
CCE Short for Certified Coin Exchange EgCollector 2011-06-10
CDN Short for Coin Dealer Newsletter EgCollector 2011-06-10
Ce (mintmark) Mintmark for the city of Real de Catorce on Mexican coins. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Cedi Primary monetary unit of Ghana. Divided into 100 pesewas. In 2007 the "old cedi" was replaced by the "new cedi" at a rate of 10,000 old to the new. "Cedi" is the name for the cowry shell in the local Akan language. EgCollector 2011-06-10
census A compilation of the known specimens of a particular numismatic item. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Cent A denomination valued at one-hundredth of the primary monetary unit, used by numerous countries as the minor unit in their decimal currency systems. The first country to issue cents was the United States, which has struck cents continuously since 1793 except for 1815. Other countries use variations on the word "cent", particularly Romance language countries in which the word "cent" means "one hundred". EgCollector 2011-06-10
Centas The fractional currency unit of Lithuania; there are 100 centu to the litas. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Centavo An equivalent of a cent used in Spanish or Portuguese-speaking countries. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Centesimo An equivalent of a cent used in Italian-speaking countries. Also a variant used in some Spanish-speaking countries. The plural in Italian is "centesimi". EgCollector 2011-06-10
Centime An equivalent of a cent used in French-speaking countries. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Centimo An equivalent of a cent used in a few Spanish and Portuguese-speaking countries. The Andorran "centim" is a local variant on the spelling of this word. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Certified Coin Dealer Newsletter The official name for the Bluesheet that lists bid/ask/market prices for third-party certified coins. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Certified Coin Exchange The bid/ask coin trading and quotation system owned by the American Teleprocessing Company. EgCollector 2011-06-10
CH An abbreviation for "Choice." EgCollector 2011-06-10
Chain Cent The popular name for the Flowing Hair Chain cent of 1793, the first coins struck in the newly occupied Mint building. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Chalkon The name of a bronze unit of currency in several ancient Greek city-states. In Athens, there were 8 chalkoi to the obol. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Charlotte Mint Located in North Carolina, the branch Mint at Charlotte operated from 1838-1861 and was closed due to the Civil War. The Charlotte mint struck only gold coins (mostly from local, native ore), all of which bear the "C" mintmark. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Chetrum Sometimes spelled "chhertum". The fractional currency unit of Bhutan; there are 100 chetrum to the ngultrum. EgCollector 2011-06-10
choice An adjectival description applied to coin's grade, e.g., choice Uncirculated, choice Very Fine, etc. Used to describe an especially attractive example of a particular grade. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Choice Unc Short for Choice Uncirculated. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Choice Uncirculated An Uncirculated coin grading MS-63 or MS-64. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Chon The fractional currency unit in North Korea; there are 100 chon to the won. Coins denominated in chon have not been issued by the South, but the North has issued numerous NCLT coins denominate in chon. EgCollector 2011-06-10
circulated A term applied to a coin that has wear, ranging from slight rubbing to heavy wear. EgCollector 2011-06-10
circulation A term applied to coins that have been spent in commerce and have received wear. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Cistophorus A form of tetradrachm struck at several ancient Greek cities during Roman times, these were the largest Roman silver coins. Tariffed at three Roman denarii or four local drachms. The name derives from the sacred box of Dionysius, frequently depicted on these coins. EgCollector 2011-06-10
CL Mintmark for the city of Genoa during the French occupation of that city, 1813-14. EgCollector 2011-06-10
clad A term used to describe any of the modern "sandwich" coins that have layers of copper and nickel. (A pure copper core surrounded by a copper-nickel alloy.) Also used for the 40-percent silver half dollars. EgCollector 2011-06-10
clad bag Usually applied to a one-thousand dollar bag of 40-percent silver half dollars although it also could apply to any bag of "sandwich" coins. EgCollector 2011-06-10
clash marks The images of the dies seen on coins struck from clashed dies. The obverse will have images from the reverse and vice versa. EgCollector 2011-06-10
clashed dies Dies that have been damaged by striking each other without a planchet between them. Typically, this imparts part of the obverse image to the reverse die and vice versa. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Classic Era The term describing the period from 1792 until 1964 when silver and gold coins of the United States were issued. (Gold coins, of course, were not minted after 1933.) EgCollector 2011-06-10
Classic Head A depiction of Miss Liberty that recalls the "classic" look of a Roman or Greek athlete wearing a ribbon around the hair. The motif was first used on the John Reich designed struck from 1808 until 1814. The next year, the half cent was changed to this design. This head was also copied by William Kneass for the quarter eagle and half eagle designs first struck in 1834. EgCollector 2011-06-10
cleaned A term applied to a coin whose original surface has been removed. The effects may be slight or severe, depending on the method used. EgCollector 2011-06-10
clip Slang for a coin struck from a clipped planchet. EgCollector 2011-06-10
clipped A term for an irregularly cut planchet. A clip can be straight or curved, depending upon where it was cut from the strip of metal. EgCollector 2011-06-10
clogged die A die that has grease or some other contaminant lodged in the recessed areas. Coins struck from such a die have diminished detail, sometimes completely missing. EgCollector 2011-06-10
close collar The edge device, sometimes called a collar die, that surrounds the lower die. Actually open and close collars are both closed collars - as opposed to segmented collars. The close collar imparts reeding or a smooth, plain edge. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Closed collar Alternate form of close collar EgCollector 2011-06-10
Cob The name given to the series of crudely-struck silver and gold coins, particularly from the Spanish-American mints from the 1500's to the 1700's. The name comes from the Spanish phrase "cabo de barre", cut off the bar, describing the method of preparing the blanks for these coins by slicing pieces off of a roughly cylindrical ingot of precious metal. The name can also be applied to any series of coins where the blanks were prepared in similar fashion, such as Russia; the word "ruble" also means EgCollector 2011-06-10
coin Metal formed into a disk of standardized weight and stamped with a standard design to enable it to circulate as money authorized by a government body. EgCollector 2011-06-10
coin collection A systematic grouping of coins assembled for fun or profit. EgCollector 2011-06-10
coin collector An individual who accumulates coins in a systematic manner. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Coin Dealer Newsletter Weekly periodical, commonly called the Greysheet, listing bid and ask prices for many United States coins. EgCollector 2011-06-10
coin friction Term applied to the area resulting when coins rub together in rolls or bags and small amounts of metal are displaced. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Coin Orientation When the rotation axis of the two dies of a coin is 180 degrees. That is, when a coin's obverse is facing the viewer "right way up" and the coin is held at top and bottom and turned over, the reverse now appears "upside down". The opposite is "medal orientation". EgCollector 2011-06-10
coin show A bourse composed of coin dealers displaying their wares for sale and trade. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Coin Universe Internet site established in 1994 for the trading of numismatic items EgCollector 2011-06-10
Coin World Weekly numismatic periodical established in 1960. EgCollector 2011-06-10
coinage The issuance of metallic money of a particular country. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Coins Magazine Monthly numismatic periodical. EgCollector 2011-06-10
collar A metal piece that either positions a planchet beneath the dies and/or restrains the expanding metal of a coin during striking. Collars are considered the "third" die and, today, are used to impart the edge markings to a coin. Collars can be merely a hole in a flat piece of metal or a set of segments that pull away from the coin after it is struck. EgCollector 2011-06-10
collector An individual who amasses a systematic group of coins or other numismatic items. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Colon The primary monetary units of Costa Rica and El Salvador. The plural is colones. "Colon" is the Spanish name for Christopher Columbus. EgCollector 2011-06-10
commem Short for "commemorative." EgCollector 2011-06-10
commercial grade A grade that is usually one level higher than the market grade; refers to a coin that is "pushed" a grade, such as an EF/AU coin (corresponding to 45+) sold as AU-50. EgCollector 2011-06-10
commercial strike A synonym for regular strike or business strike. EgCollector 2011-06-10
common A numismatic issue that is readily available. Since this is a relative term, no firm number can be used as a cut-off point between common and scarce. EgCollector 2011-06-10
common date A particular issue within a series that is readily available. No exact number can be used to determine which coins are common dates as this is relative to the mintage of the series. (i.e. A 1799 eagle is a common date within its series just as an 1881-S silver dollar is a common date within the Morgan series. Obviously, the 1799 eagle is rare compared to the 1881-S dollar.) EgCollector 2011-06-10
Communion Token Tokens used in certain closed-communion churches, particularly Scottish (Presbyterian), to gain entry to the communion service. EgCollector 2011-06-10
complete set A term for all possible coins within a series, all types, or all coins from a particular branch Mint. Examples would include a complete set of a series (The three-dollar series can have but one complete set, that being the Harry Bass Foundation set that includes the unique 1870-S. Yes, it is possible that the cornerstone coin could appear someday and change the unique status; a complete gold type set would include examples of all types from 1795 until 1933; a complete set of Charlotte Mint gold EgCollector 2011-06-10
condition The state of preservation of a particular numismatic issue. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Condition Census A listing of the finest known examples of a particular issue. There is no fixed number of coins in a Condition Census with 5, 6, 10, and other totals used by different surveyors. EgCollector 2011-06-10
condition rarity A term to indicate a common coin that is rare when found in high grades. Also, the rarity level at a particular grade and higher. EgCollector 2011-06-10
consensus grading The process of determining the condition of a coin by using multiple graders. EgCollector 2011-06-10
contact marks Marks on a coin that are incurred through contact with another coin or a foreign object. These are generally small, compared to other types of marks such as gouges. EgCollector 2011-06-10
contemporary counterfeit A coin, usually base metal, struck from crudely engraved dies and made to pass for face value at the time of its creation. Sometimes such counterfeits are collected along with the genuine coins, especially in the case of American Colonial issues. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Continental dollars 1776 dated "dollars" struck in pewter (scarce), brass (rare), copper (extremely rare) and silver (extremely rare). Although likely struck sometime later than 1776, these saw extensive circulation. The design was inspired by certain Benjamin Franklin sketches. Some of these were possibly struck as pattern "cents" instead of "dollars." EgCollector 2011-06-10
copper spot A spot or stain commonly seen on gold coinage, indicating an area of copper concentration that has oxidized. Copper spots or stains range from tiny dots to large blotches. EgCollector 2011-06-10
copper-nickel The alloy (88% copper, 12% nickel) used for small cents from 1856 until mid-1864. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Copper-Nickel Cent The cents issued from 1859 until 1864 in the copper-nickel alloy. These were called white cents by the citizens of the era because of their pale color compared to the red cents of the past. EgCollector 2011-06-10
coppers Slang for half cents, large cents, and pre-Federal copper issues. EgCollector 2011-06-10
copy Any reproduction, fraudulent or otherwise, of a coin. EgCollector 2011-06-10
copy dies Dies made at a later date, usually showing slight differences from the originals. Examples include the reverse of 1804 Class II and III silver dollars and 1831 half cents with the Type of 1840-57 reverse. Also used to denote counterfeit dies copied directly from a genuine coin. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Cordoba The primary monetary unit of Nicaragua; there are 100 centavos to the cordoba. Named after the founder of Nicaragua, Francisco Hernandez de Cordoba. The cordoma has been revaluated twice in recent years, due to hyperinflation. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Coronet Head Alternate name for Braided Hair design by Christian Gobrecht (also called Liberty Head design). EgCollector 2011-06-10
corrosion Damage that results when reactive chemicals act upon metal. When toning ceases to be a "protective" coating and instead begins to damage a coin, corrosion is the cause. Usually confined to copper, nickel and silver regular issues, although patterns in aluminum, white metal, tin, etc., also are subject to this harmful process. EgCollector 2011-06-10
cost The price paid for a numismatic item. EgCollector 2011-06-10
counterfeit Literally, a coin that is not genuine. There are cast and struck counterfeits and the term is also applied to issues with added mint marks, altered dates, etc. EgCollector 2011-06-10
counterstamp A stamp or impression placed on a coin after it has left the Mint of origin. Counterstamps were frequently used as advertising gimmicks on large cents and other coins. The counterstamp leaves a permanent impression on the metal and may hurt the value of the coin. It may also help the value, as in the case of an Ephriam Brasher counterstamp. EgCollector 2011-06-10
counting board An abacus-like arrangement used with jetons or rechenpfennig, which assisted with calculating in Roman numerals, and also with reckoning amounts of money in complicated pre-decimal and multinational monetary systems. EgCollector 2011-06-10
counting machine mark A dense patch of lines caused by the rubber wheel of a counting machine where the wheel was set with insufficient spacing for the selected coin. Many coins have been subjected to counting machines - among these are Mercury dimes, Buffalo nickels, Walking Liberty half dollars, Morgan and Peace dollars, and Saint-Gaudens double eagles. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Cow (mintmark) Mintmark for the city of Pau (French coins). Coins from this mint are also distinguished by the addition of the letters "BD" (abbreviation for "Duke of Bearn") to the king's titles EgCollector 2011-06-10
Cowry shells Seashells which became a form of primitive money used in various parts of the world, especially in areas far from the sea or where cowry shells were not abundant, particularly in China, the west coast of Africa, and the Pacific islands. The species known as "money cowries" (Cypraea moneta) was most commonly used for this purpose. Bone, stone, jade and copper imitations of cowries were the earliest known objects specifically made for use as money, in China, circa 2000 BC. In mmodern times, the "c EgCollector 2011-06-10
crossover A word that is used to describe a coin that graded the same at two different grading services. Also written as two words: cross over. "I was sure that the coin wouldn't cross over, so I didn't buy it." or "That coin's definitely a crossover." EgCollector 2011-06-10
Crown A large silver coin of Great Britain and the British colonies, valued at 5 shillings. The name is also used in a more general sense, of any large silver coin roughly the same size as a crown. EgCollector 2011-06-10
cud An area of a coin struck by a die that has a complete break across part of its surface. A cud may be either a retained cud, where the faulty piece of the die is still in place, or a full cud, where the piece of the die has fallen away. Retained cuds usually have dentil detail if on the edge, while full cuds do not. EgCollector 2011-06-10
cupro-nickel Any alloy of copper and nickel. Now usually used in reference to the modern "sandwich" issues. The copper-nickel cents, three-cent nickel issues, and nickel issues are also cupro-nickel. EgCollector 2011-06-10
Currency A synonym for "money", the word has in recent years (particularly in America) taken on the more specific meaning of "paper money" or "banknotes". EgCollector 2011-06-10
CUZco monogram (mintmark) Mintmark for the city of Cuzco on Peruvian and Spanish-Peruvian coins. EgCollector 2011-06-10
CV Abbreviation for "catalog value", the value a coin has according to the book or catalog most usually referenced for that particular coin type. EgCollector 2011-06-10

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