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Poland Medival Silver 1/2 Grosz Crowned Jan Olbracht -Real Or Not?

 
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Valued Member
Canada
343 Posts
 Posted 01/05/2017  4:39 pm Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add aghawk to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
First time posting here.
My first ancient coin and would like confirmation on what it is and that it is real. Looking online the coin seems very similar to the Poland Medival Silver 1/2 Grosz Crowned Jan Olbracht on eBay - however some details are not the same. As these are apparently hammered coins I would understand that there might be variations but I would appreciate more expert opinions.

Thanks in advance for your time.



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United States
23406 Posts
 Posted 01/05/2017  5:49 pm  Show Profile   Check echizento's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add echizento to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Nice coin, though I wouldn't call it ancient it's falls under Medieval. It appears genuine but Spence is our resident expert on Medieval coinage he will be able to add more information about it.
https://www.ma-shops.com/sesambestc...8325&lang=en
Pillar of the Community
Russian Federation
3307 Posts
 Posted 01/05/2017  8:59 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add january1may to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
For just about anything from 2nd to 17th century inclusive (and to an extent also earlier and slightly later), "some details are not the same" is not an indicator of anything. The minting process introduced too many irregularities.
Some very popular and/or very rare issues have die studies, but it's not always easy to match same-die coins, and in many cases it's perfectly possible for a newly found example to come from a previously unrecorded real die.
[One big exception is post-1535 Russian wire money - the dies for those were mechanically produced from hubs, so if it's not in KG, it's probably fake. But I can't recall ever seeing a non-contemporary fake of Russian wire money, and anyone trying to sell it as a rare variety would probably try to make it fit the KG picture anyway.]

That said, it is fairly common for people unexperienced in the particular series to dismiss fairly major differences as unimportant (or, even more commonly, not know that those specific minor differences are significant to the series - this is especially common for style attributions, such as the assorted English pennies in the name of Henry).
So, for example, in this case, without comments from an actual expert (Spence? Medieval? giedrius?), I would not even necessarily assume that this is even a half grosz of Jan Olbracht and not some other denomination and/or ruler. (For what it's worth, I don't see any form of the name Jan anywhere in the legend, but for all I know the name didn't appear on his normal coins either.)
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United States
18178 Posts
 Posted 01/05/2017  9:39 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Spence to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
@aghawk, thanks for posting this interesting coin--your first medieval one no less! So much better than those dusty old Roman coins that other folks insist on posting here.

Anyway, I agree with your conclusion that it is a half groschen minted under the authority of King John Albert of Poland. There are two main varieties of his half groschen, one with a rondelle under the crown and one with a rosette. Yours is the rosette style, which means that the attribution is Kopicki #387. These are quite common and not terribly expensive, so it pains me to even consider that yours might have been faked. I see nothing that would push me in that direction, but I have shown myself time and time again to be a poor recognizer of fakes. If you want to go through the expense and effort, you could certainly get an XRF analysis to confirm that the metal is a silver alloy with the correct trace elements.

With regard to the slight difference in inscriptions, there have been multiple threads here on CCF where we have discussed that minor variations in legends and even letter shapes might have been due to illiteracy among the medieval die cutters. Here is one fairly recent example:

http://goccf.com/t/275137

Here is a second link to a whole book being written by one of our members to document variations among inscriptions and other details for certain Lithuanian coins from the 15th, 16th, and 17th Centuries:

http://goccf.com/t/269477

I wouldn't stress about your inscription being slightly different from others of this same variety.
"If you climb a good tree, you get a push."
-----Ghanaian proverb

"The danger we all now face is distinguishing between what is authentic and what is performed."
-----King Adz

Valued Member
Canada
343 Posts
 Posted 01/05/2017  10:15 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add aghawk to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Wow! Thanks for the replies. Again showing what a great resource and community is on this forum.
I will definitely check out the links provided. I also thought that it would be a lot of effort to fake a coin that doesn't have so much value.
This coin will be staying in my humble collection and perhaps I may start looking into adding a few more.
Valued Member
Lithuania
363 Posts
 Posted 01/11/2017  04:11 am  Show Profile   Check giedrius's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add giedrius to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I don't see any form of the name Jan anywhere in the legend" Legend is in Latin.
Obverse: MONETA ALBERTI
Reverse: REGIS POLONIE
So, this is the half-groat of Polish king John Albert (Jan Olbracht in Polish), as Spence wrote.
Coin is genuine, http://www.historiapieniadza.pl/wp/?page_id=227
Catalogue of Lithuanian half-groats 1495-1529 http://goccf.com/t/282866
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