Author Topic: Obverse and reverse  (Read 39503 times)

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translateltd

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #15 on: November 11, 2008, 09:55:15 AM »
Martin,
  You're being ridiculous.We're talking about the Commie Polish coins here.The denomination is located on the reverse,therefore the date is on the obverse.

Aidan.

That doesn't even merit a response.  You seem to be making the rules up as you go along here.  The principle is (usually) that the name or symbol of the issuing authority or ruler (i.e. a current one, not a historical figure being commemorated) constitutes the "most important" side, which is historically the obverse.  The location of the date and/or denomination is irrelevant.

I'd be interested to read considered views from other members in this regard.


BC Numismatics

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #16 on: November 11, 2008, 10:11:13 AM »
Martin,
  I am not making up the rules as I go along.In the case of the Commie Polish coins,the reverse always has the Commie Polish Coat-of-Arms.

Aidan.

Offline chrisild

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #17 on: November 11, 2008, 10:52:34 AM »
I'd be interested to read considered views from other members in this regard.

My view is ... obverse, shmobverse. :) Seriously, does it really matter? Some countries have laws/regulations about what is the obverse and what is the reverse of a coin, others do not. Some collectors seem to have very strong opinions about what is or should be the obverse, and apply their views to each and every coin. For me (as a "user") what primarily counts is the face value, so I tend to consider the side that shows it to be the obverse. Yes, I know that many collectors do not share that view - so what?

In my country, the Federal Republic of Germany, we have never had a "legal definition" of what the obverse/reverse of a DM or Pf coin is. For the euro and cent coins, there is the EU usage of common side/reverse and national side/obverse, and for German collector coins we use Bildseite (lit. image side) and Wertseite (lit. value side). The terms I like best can be found in the German Reich's 1873 coinage act ...

... "the one side" and "the other side".

Christian

translateltd

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #18 on: November 11, 2008, 11:09:32 AM »
Martin,
  I am not making up the rules as I go along.In the case of the Commie Polish coins,the reverse always has the Commie Polish Coat-of-Arms.

Aidan.

The view I have expressed here is supported by a mass of reference books as well as tradition (where do you get the "always has the Commie Polish Coat-of-Arms" reference from, btw?).  While it's probably unnecessary to go this far, the Deutsches Münzsammler-Lexikon (Battenberg, 1977) contains an extensive definition of what constitutes the obverse of a coin, and says, with regard to coins issued by republics, "the obverse is the side containing the name of the city or country or the coat of arms or other symbol of state, in that order". 

The only country that seems to take the date as a defining point for the obverse is the US, so the date is irrelevant to Polish issues.

As I said earlier, the only way to be completely sure in practical (rather than legal) terms would be to find out which die was up and which down at the time of striking ...

What you wish to believe is entirely up to you, but this definition seems to be supported by the bulk of the literature.

translateltd

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #19 on: November 11, 2008, 06:20:37 PM »
Martin,
  The Commie Polish Coat-of-Arms doesn't have a crown on the eagle's head,whereas,the current Polish Coat-of-Arms does.

I am trying to be objective as well as subjective here.

The Coat-of-Arms reverse on the Commie Polish coins applies to the coins & medal-coins denominated above 1 Zloty issued as commemoratives.Whether or not these commemorates circulated is debateable.

Aidan.

Why is a crown supposed to be relevant?  We've moved from dates to arms to crowns now - what next?

Offline Figleaf

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #20 on: November 11, 2008, 07:42:52 PM »
I go with Christian. On 15th century and later coins there is very often a legend that's too long to be on one side, so it's continued on the other. For instance, one side might have abbreviations for PHILIPPVS DEI GRATIA while the other side would continue with HISPANIARVM ET INDIARVM REX. In those circumstances, and especially when coins are badly struck or clipped it is useful to know where the legend is supposed to start, especially when the coin has no portrait, like this one.



from this thread, where you can find what the legend means. From the late 18th century, titles of nobility and the king of France were significantly shortened and today, even British coins have all the titles on one side. This obviates the utility of the obverse/reverse distinction on modern coins as well as the need to argue about it.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline africancoins

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #21 on: November 11, 2008, 08:46:10 PM »
>>I'd be interested to read considered views from other members in this regard.<<

For Polish coins of the two periods mentioned I agree completely with Martin. On these coins it is obvious to a coin collector that the side with the eagle is the obverse - as the side with the eagle has the state emblem (the eagle) and the country name. The world coin books are of this same opinion and the website of the Polish mint always shows the images of the two sides of Polish coins the same way around as the world coins books. Also on the site of National Bank of Poland many coin descriptions can be seen starting as...

>>>>>>OBVERSE: On the left-hand side, an image of the Eagle established as the State Emblem of the Republic of Poland.<<<<<<

Aidan - What rules will you re-write next. Stop wasting time.

Thanks Mr Paul Baker

Offline ghipszky

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #22 on: November 12, 2008, 04:06:29 AM »
I have learned something from this post about how other countries regard the obverse of a coin and reverse.
Ginger

Offline chrisild

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #23 on: November 12, 2008, 11:36:37 AM »
So we did not deter you with all those comments about what is, and what should "rightfully" be, the obverse or reverse? Great. ;)

Christian

Offline ghipszky

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #24 on: November 13, 2008, 02:12:17 AM »
I just try to keep the peace and go with the flow and learn all I can!!! :)
Ginger

translateltd

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #25 on: November 13, 2008, 03:27:02 AM »
I thought the principle was a nice, straightforward one that can be applied in almost all situations (except the US and EU, which have established principles of their own), but evidently not everyone thinks so - I trust some of our members got some food for thought out of it, anyway, whether we choose to disagree or not.


Offline Figleaf

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #26 on: November 13, 2008, 09:24:26 PM »
And don't forget the third opinion: who cares? Numismatics is not kind to "rules". There are many exceptions to all of them (no, not all coins are metallic, but most are).

Discussions, when civil and respectful to other opinions, are great and to be encouraged. They do indeed open minds and you always learn something.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

translateltd

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #27 on: November 13, 2008, 09:59:07 PM »
"Principles" (I prefer that term to "rules", as it allows for the obvious existence of exceptions, and sounds less dogmatic) can still be handy as a guide, even if they may be of no interest to some and a red rag to others.

One thing I would be very interested to find out is whether the side defined by "principles" as the obverse is still the one actually produced by the lower die in the manufacturing process - this could be of importance to those who study die linkages, sequences of die cracks and degradations, etc.  So is the Queen's effigy on UK and commonwealth coinage always on the fixed (lower) die, with the reverse on the moving (upper) die?  Anyone know?

This question is directed to those who *do* care (and are prepared to discuss sensibly): in around 1946 - not sure of the exact date, would have to trawl through some Japanese references to find it again - Japan decreed that the sides known as the obverse and reverse were henceforth to be swapped.  Anyone know why?  Was it in fact a technical factor, e.g. putting what was the "obverse" die in the upper part of the striking machinery and vice versa, that gave rise to the change?  That has always puzzled me, and I've never got around to asking about it before.


BC Numismatics

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #28 on: October 19, 2009, 04:05:17 AM »
This is obverses C and D on KM-129.x coins.

This is also the difference between 2 Rupees KM-121.5 and 2 Rupees KM-121.6. If it helps I could do an image for those too. It is a distinct difference even if slight. OBV C is shows central die wear and this is corrected for on OBV D.

There was something similar in the 1970s with what are now KM-49.x sub-types. I have some of those too.

Thanks Mr Paul Baker

Paul,
  The Asokan capital is on the reverse of the Indian 2 Rupees & 10 Rupees coins.

Aidan.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2009, 04:05:14 PM by Figleaf »

Offline africancoins

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Re: Obverse and reverse
« Reply #29 on: October 19, 2009, 07:11:56 PM »
>>The Asokan capital is on the reverse of the Indian 2 Rupees & 10 Rupees coins.<<

Ha ! Ha ! Very funny.

thanks Mr Paul Baker