Welcome to Stack’s Bowers and Ponterio’s Anticipated Auction of Ancient and World Coins, Medals and Paper Money!

The time has finally come; the Stack’s Bowers and Ponterio August 2012 Philadelphia ANA auction sale catalogue is in the mail and arriving at doorsteps daily. Over the past few months, Todd McKenna, Kent Ponterio, and I have been teasing our clients with bi-weekly articles about special coins in this auction, and we have been traveling the country, showing highlights at Baltimore, Chicago, Long Beach, and various other locations, whetting the appetites of numismatists worldwide.

The world coin and currency sessions of the official ANA auction will be held on Wednesday, August 8 and Friday, August 10, both sessions to begin at 10am. We are also featuring for the first time an online session of world coins and paper money, closing on Tuesday, August 14 at 3pm ET. Throughout these three sessions, you will find a very diverse offering of quality world and ancient coins, paper money and medals.

Session A will begin with world paper money. A very impressive selection of rare and beautifully engraved and designed notes will draw attention from collectors in this wonderful numismatic specialty. Starting at lot 20001 with a rare SH1318 (1939) 20 Afghanis note, the number of highlights of the currency section is quite large, the following notes are sure to illicit strong bidding activity from collectors. Lot 20011 is a beautiful Australian Half Sovereign note in PMG VF-30 EPQ, and starts out an impressive run of Australian banknotes. We are proud to offer an incredibly rare 1000 Mil Reis note of Brazil (P-100) in Choice AU condition. Brazilian numismatics is a very popular area of collecting for many people and this note will be a centerpiece in an advanced collection. A scarce and beautiful PMG AU-55 EPQ Costa Rica “Mona Lisa” 2 Colones will grab viewers’ attention as lot 20085. Brightly colored and beautiful, the complete specimen set of Indonesian Wildlife specimen notes will delight the eye. We are pleased to present a wide array of notes of the Palestine Currency Board, a very popular area of world note collecting, starting at lot 20276. Even if world banknotes are not your area of collecting, peruse the offering and perhaps one of these beautiful notes will set you off in a new area of collecting interest.

After the world paper currency, Session A continues with coins of the Ancient World. A small but important offering of Greek and Roman coins will delight collectors of this wonderful field. A Mint State Tetradrachm of Philip II of Macedon will excite, as will an EF Distater of Alexander the Great. Among Roman coins is an Aureus of Nero and Agrippina; this fascinating type, was the subject of a blog entry by Kent Ponterio. A lovely, nearly Mint State Aureus of Septimus Severus will be the subject of strong bidding activity.

Session B begins with 403 lots of world gold coins. Seven lots into the session, we are pleased to present a beautiful MS-63+ Adelaide Pound graded by PCGS and in a Secure holder. A popular and rare type among collectors, the 1852 Adelaide Pound is always the centerpiece of collections, and draws significant attention at auction. We are pleased to have been selected by several collectors of Brazilian coins to offer selections in this sale (more of which will be described with the world crowns later on). Among the gold coins is a superb 6,400 Reis of 1758 graded MS-66 by NGC. A small grouping of Canadian gold coins features a Specimen-65 1908-C Sovereign, one of only 636 pieces struck. Lot 40121 is a lovely Coronation 5 Ducat of Frankfurt, graded EF-45 by NGC. Subject of a wonderful article by Todd McKenna, is lot 40141, a rare and high grade Triple Unite of the Oxford Mint, sure to be the focus of strong bidding activity. Also among British highlights is a complete 1911 Proof Set housed in the original mint case. From the Demarete Collection, we are pleased to feature lot 40224, an 80 Lire of Sardinia, 1821-L, a rare survivor from an original mintage of 925 pieces. Graded AU-58 by NGC, this is a highlight of our superb selection of Italian coins. From an original issue of 201 sets, our sale has four Polish Gold Proof Sets commemorating Pope John Paul II’s visit to America. Since his death, coins featuring this pontiff have gained in popularity, especially the issues of his native Poland. Towards the end of our offering is a strong selection of Russian rarities in gold and platinum, including: 1755 5 Rubles in AU-55 (NGC), 1798-CN OM 5 Rubles in NGC MS-62, a 12 Ruble of 1831 in NGC AU-55, an 1830-CNB 6 Ruble in MS-64 (NGC), and an 1828 3 Ruble in Proof-65 (NGC).

The rest of Session B features World Crowns and Minors, and is anchored by the Demarete Collection. This fantastic collection was the topic of one of my blogs when we sold Part I in Baltimore in March and Part II in Hong Kong in April. The session begins with a pair of enigmatic pattern 5 Franga Ari of Albania, struck in brass and copper, certified by PCGS as Specimen-64. For the connoisseur of Australian coins, is the very rare key 1930 Penny, graded VF-35 by PCGS and housed in a secure holder. A diverse and important group of Brazilian counterstamped coinage and patterns are next, highlighted by a very rare 1827 80 Reis in copper and a pair of 1830 40 Reis in copper with the crowned monogram of Pedro I. A rare Ecu of Lorraine dated 1603 begins a nice run of high grade French crowns highlighted by the Madeleine Collection. Among German States issues is a wonderful EF “Wildman” 3 Taler. One of my favorite types of world coins are the Sede Vecante coins of Eichstatt, and we have the pleasure of offering two of the nicest examples I have seen, a Taler of 1757 and a 2 Taler of 1790.The Demarete Collection features a lovely run of Saxony Talers, 1763-1771, magnificent coins graded MS-65 and MS-66 by NGC and of superb quality, many showing strong reflective luster. They are as beautiful today as they were when they came off the coining press. British coins commence at lot 40575 with a lovely NGC EF-45 Oxford Mint Pound of 1644, which appeared as lot 537 in Glendining & Co.’s May 1937 auction sale. Todd McKenna describes the history of this coin in a previous article. The finest NGC graded AH 1301 (1884) Toman of Iran (MS-63) is offered as lot 40618. Finer than the Millennia Collection coin, this piece will certainly garner much bidding activity. A small selection of fine Papal States silver issues follows next, featuring astonishing artistry and detail. Following close behind is a complete set of Vittorio Emanuele 20 Lire pieces, 1929 to 1934, from the Demarete Collection. These rare issues each had a mintage of only 50 pieces. Each of these is either MS-65 or MS-66 by NGC and each has lovely original toning. A beautifully toned Guanajuato 8 Reales, 1870 with the assayer YF, graded AU-55 (NGC), is a highlight of our Mexican section. One of the most recognizable world coins of the 20th century, the Waitangi Crown of New Zealand, issued as part of complete Proof sets (see lot 40703) and as singles. Lot 40725 is a remarkable numismatic delicacy, a silver tankard (made after 1651, but likely early 18th century) inlaid with 17 extremely rare Polish and related Talers. These coins were all new, or nearly so when this piece was made, as the interior shows coins of high grade, although over the years the outside has been polished. This may be the only way to acquire examples of these very rare coins. As it is, this piece may be unique. A lovely Lithuanian Taler, 1586-NB of Stephen Bathory, NGC graded MS-64 is a highlight of the Demarete Collection. A very rare issue, this is of the highest quality. An extensive selection of Russian Rubles is anchored by the Demarete “Family Ruble,” one of the most famous of Russian rarities, and featured in one of our previous blogs. Rounding out the end of this session are a half dozen high grade examples of Transylvanian Talers, each from the Demarete Collection. These very popular issues are highly collectible and sought after, especially in the quality offered here.

Be sure to view the selections in Session C, our Internet only session, which features 740 lots of highly collectible world and ancient coins and world paper money. A very diverse offering which should not be forgotten, the session ends on Tuesday, August 14, at 3pm Eastern daylight time.

Lot viewing begins in our Irvine offices on July 16, and goes to July 20 and then is available to our East Coast clients in our New York City offices July 27-31. Viewing in both offices is by appointment only, so please contact us as soon as possible to schedule a time to view. We will begin lot viewing in Philadelphia on August 2, and will continue until Friday August 10.

If you are a collector of world or ancient numismatic material, there is likely something of interest to you in this sale. We suggest that you take some time, study the coins in the offing, view the items of note, and plan to bid. If you have any questions on how to bid or need further description of an item, feel free to contact us, we will be happy to assist you!

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