# Kids Coin Trivia Coin Parts

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```					Kids Coin Trivia
Coin Parts

Courtesy of several resources
March 2009
Reeding
• Some coins have tiny groves “reeded”
edges
• Helps prevent filing down edges of
silver and gold coins
• Today in North America circulated coins
under \$1 do not contain silver and gold
• Vision-impaired people used reeding to
help them distinguish one coin from
another
Motto
• These are special messages that a
country puts on its coins such as “In
God We Trust” and “E Pluribus Unum”
(“Out of Many, One”)
Portrait
• Usually a country’s political or religious
leader such as a President, King/Queen,
General, or Pope or in the U.S. Lady
Liberty
• Is pictured on the obverse side of the
coin
No Portrait – where
obverse?
• When coins used to be struck by hand, the
side of the coin that was on the anvil die
was always the obverse. The side that
took the hammer strike was the reverse.
there is no longer an "anvil die" at all.
Checklist to determine
Obverse
• (1) The obverse has the portrait. If
neither side (or both sides) have
portraits, try to apply condition 2.
Checklist to determine
Obverse
• (2) The obverse side is different. In
other words, the obverse side doesn't have the
"common type." A good example of this is the Euro
coin, which doesn't have a portrait. However, each
country has its own design on one side, with a design
common to all countries on the other side. The coins
are said to share the same "reverse," more or less by
mutual assent among collectors.
• This rule would also apply to a country that has, say, a coat of
arms (or some other common device) on its coinage (but no
portrait.) If the common device appears on multiple
denominations, the side without that device is the obverse.
Checklist to determine
Obverse
• (3) The side that bears the name of
the country is usually considered the
obverse in cases where the coin meets
neither 1 or 2 above.
Checklist to determine
Obverse
• (4) Look at a proof set. If you have
as a proof set, you can determine which
side the mint considers to be the
obverse because this side will be face
up in the proof coin holder!
Checklist to determine
Obverse
• (5) Look it up in the "Standard
Catalog of World Coins". I list this
option last because if you had the book,
you probably wouldn't be reading this
checklist. Unfortunately, collectors
disagree about many of the coins that
don't fit one of the categories above,
(and some that do), so whatever the
book says about these coins should be
taken with a grain of salt.
Checklist to determine
Obverse
• This reverse is on the Euro in every
country.
• Photo courtesy of the European Central
Bank
Rim
• This is the raised edge of the coin
• Some coins have flat rims as a variation
• The rim is the raised part around the
devices on both sides; the edge is the
part between the faces.
Date
• When a coin was issued by the mint
• A key date is a coin that is usually the
last to be placed in a collection, because
the date or date and mint mark
combination is especially rare or hard to
find. It is the coin that most collectors
need to complete a certain collection.
Field
• Blank space on a coin
• The field of a coin is the flat, empty
space around the devices; the blank
area of the from which the devices rise.
• Examples: The field of a proof coin
should be mirror-like and pristine.
Mint Mark
• Letter (or mint symbol) where coin was
–   UNITED STATES COIN MINT MARK LOCATION

Mint Marks on most coins are
P = produced at the Philadelphia Pennsylvania branch of the United States Mint

D = produced at the Denver Colorado branch of the U.S. Mint

S = produced at the San Fancisco California branch of the U.S. Mint

O = produced at the New Orleans Louisiana branch of the U.S. Mint

CC= produced at the Carson City Nevada branch of the U.S. Mint

C = Charlotte, North Carolina only on gold coins
D = Dahlonega, Georgia only on gold coins minted from 1838 to 1861
O = produced at the New Orleans branch of the United States Mint Some gold coins
from 1838 to 1861 D = produced in Dahlonega, Georgia
Image
• Symbolic picture (often a building or
eagle) – in Canada an example is the
“loon”
Hub
• A hub is a positive, or relief (raised) image of the coin which has
been impressed into a steel die during the process of creating coin
dies. The original coin image is actually a plaster sculpture about 8
to 12 inches in diameter, from which a Master Hub is created using
a special process that reduces the image to actual coin size. This
Master Hub, which bears a relief image of the coin design, is then
copied into a select number of Master Dies, (which bear the
negative, or incuse image of the coin.)

The Master Dies are then copied, using a special extremely high-
pressure "squeezing" process which employs tremendous hydraulic
force, to create the numerous Working Hubs (commonly called
simply hubs.) Then, from the tens of thousands of Working Hubs,
the mint creates the Working Dies, (commonly just called dies.) It is
from these working dies that our coins are actually struck.
Hub

The coin image on the hub is always a positive, or relief image, and the
image on the die is always a negative, or incuse image. In this way, when
our coins are struck, we get the raised detail we expect on our circulating
coinage.

The coin hub itself looks just like a coin die, with the exception of the relief
image. It is comprised of a steel shaft with the image of the coin impressed
into one end of it.

•   Examples: It is during the process of making working dies from the working
hubs that most of the doubled die errors occur.
Face Value / Par Value
• How much the coin is worth (face) for
example 25 cents in Canada or a
Quarter in the U.S. Is worth 25% of a
dollar
• This is not to be confused with market
trend value for collector coins
• While the face value usually refers to the true value of the coin,
stamp or bill in question (as with circulation coins) it can
sometimes be largely symbolic, as is often the case with bullion
coins.
Melt Value
• In numismatics, intrinsic value is the value of the metal,
typically a precious metal, in a coin. For example, if gold trades
at a price of USD 450 per fine troy ounce (\$14/g), a coin minted
from one troy ounce of fine gold would have an intrinsic value of
USD 450. When the intrinsic value becomes greater than the
face value, the coins are in danger of being removed from
circulation in large numbers (an expression of Gresham's law).
When the coin is in use as money this effect can, at the margin,
mitigate forces that might otherwise cause inflation. When
copper prices skyrocketed in the mid-to-late 1970s, there was a
fear that the U.S. one-cent piece might succumb to this fate. In
fact, this did happen, leading the Mint to change the composition
of the cent in 1982.
Legend
• Main inscription, or words (usually name
of country)
• A coin legend, from the Latin "legenda"
meaning "the things that must be read,"
is any writing or lettering that appears
on a coin
• The legend is the inscription on a coin
minted it and for what purpose
Sample Legend
• The Roman emperor Septimius Severus, 193-211 A.D, on a
common silver coin (a denarius) the size of a dime struck, 201
The legend reads "SEVERVS AVG PART MAX"
(beginning at 6:30 on the coin, and without
spaces to conveniently separate words).
It gives part of his name,
• SEVERVS (They used a "V" for our "U"),
and three of his titles: "AVG" abbreviates
"Augustus", the Roman term for "emperor".
[again, a "V" for our "U"]. "PART" abbreviates
"Parthicus" (conqueror of the Parthians, who
ruled in what is now Iraq and Iran). "MAX“
abbreviates "Maximus" (the greatest).

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