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10 Rarest Coins In The World

By Ellen Kershner May 31 全民彩娱乐平台官网

Photo by Simon on Unsplash
Photo by Simon on Unsplash
  • demand changes over time, based on a coin’s condition, design, its age, and the value of its metal (
  • Many consider this 1849 specimen to be the rarest and most valuable coin in U.S. history.
  • The Smithsonian Institute is also 全民彩娱乐平台官网 to two specimens of the second-most valuable gold coin, the 1877 Half Union.
  • This historic, gold $20 denomination coin was designed by a famous American sculptor.
  • Famous for being the world's first million-dollar coin, this piece was minted in a limited quantity by the Royal Canadian Mint in 2007.

Nothing gets a coin collector’s blood going like hearing about a rare coin. The coin market is constantly fluctuating, and experienced collectors (called “numismatists”) know that demand changes over time, based on a coin’s condition, design, its age, and the value of its metal (gold, silver, copper, etc.). The most important factor is rarity, which can drive prices up into the millions. Some are considered priceless and belong in museums, and will never be sold to the general public. Here are 10 of the most expensive, sought-after coins in the world.

10. 1804 Bust Dollar - Class I (Mickley-Hawn-Queller Specimen) - $3.88 million

Only a small number of the 1804 Draped Bust Silver Dollars were made in 1834. Image credit: wikimedia.org

This valuable coin (also called the “King of American Coins”) has an interesting history. In 1834, the State Department ordered a set of coins for use as diplomatic gifts to the Sultan of Oman and King of Siam. The “Draped Bust” Silver dollars were minted in 1804, but the Mint made a new set of dies for the occasion. Only a small number of the 1804 Draped Bust Silver Dollars were made in 1834. There were others minted in later years, but this one is of just eight known to exist. On August 9, 2013, it fetched $3,877,500 at a Dallas, Texas auction.

9. $1 Million Gold Canadian Maple Leaf - $4.02 million

The Gold Canadian Maple Leaf is the world's first million-dollar coin Image credit: YouTube

Famous for being the world's first million-dollar coin, this piece was minted in a limited quantity by the Royal Canadian Mint in 2007. It was created to promote the Mint’s new “99.999% pure one Troy ounce Gold Maple Leaf bullion coins,” and was certified by Guinness World Records as the world's largest gold coin, weighing 3,215 troy ounces. One side depicts Queen Elizabeth II, while the reverse features a hand-polished maple leaf. Five of them have been bought by investors from across the globe.

8. 1804 Silver Dollar, Class I - $4.14 million

There are just 15 known specimens of the 1804 silver dollar in the world. Image credit: forums.collectors.com

There are just 15 known specimens of this silver dollar in the world. Called the “King of U.S. Coins,” it was originally minted as a gift for Asian rulers when they made trade envoy visits. Though it was struck in 1804, it was not minted until 30 years later in 1834. Its denomination was one dollar, and it was made from 90 percent silver and 10 percent copper.

7. 1913 Liberty Head Nickel - Morton-Smith-Eliasberg Specimen - $4.5 million

The 1913 Liberty Head Nickel is made of 75% copper and just 25% nickel. Image credit: wikimedia.org

There are no mint records for the production of the Liberty Head nickel, and there are five specimens known to exist. This nickel is made of 75 percent copper and just 25 percent nickel. Morton-Smith-Eliasberg Specimen (named after earlier owners) stands out for its unique, mirror-like surface, and it sold at auction in August of 2018. The remaining four Liberty Head Nickels belong to private collectors and museums, one being the Smithsonian.

6. 1343 Edward III Florin - $6.8 million

Two 1343 Edward III Florin coins were found in 1857 in the River Tyne in North East England. Image credit: pintrest

This gold British coin was English king Edward II’s attempt to create gold coinage for use in England and Europe. Also called a “double leopard,” its original face value was six shillings, and it was used from December 1343 through July 1344. Two were found in 1857 in the River Tyne in North East England, and a third sold at auction in 2006 for $6.8 million.

5. 1787 Brasher Doubloon - $7.4 million

The doubloon made its way to the U.S. in the late 1700s. Image credit: wikimedia.org

Originally a form of Spanish currency, the doubloon made its way to the U.S. in the late 1700s. A New York gold and silversmith named Ephraim Brasher minted a few gold coins to resemble doubloons, but they were never mass-produced. There are seven known in existence, and one sold in 2011 for $7.4 million.

4. 1907 Saint Gaudens - $8.5 million

U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt commissioned Augustus Saint-Gaudens to design the 1907 Saint Gaudens coin. Image credit: wikipedia.org

This historic, gold $20 denomination coin was designed by a famous American sculptor. Augustus Saint-Gaudens. At the time, U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt commissioned Saint-Gaudens to design the coin, which features Lady Liberty and rays of sunlight on the front and an eagle in flight on the back. It had a limited minting, with only a few remaining ones that are almost completely untouched. The Smithsonian has two.

3. 1794 Flowing Hair Silver Dollar - $10 million

The 1794 Flowing Hair Silver Dollar might have been the first silver dollar ever minted in the U.S. Image credit: YouTube

This rare coin dates back to the earliest days of the United States Mint, which opened in 1792. Back then, they only minted pattern and copper coins. This coin was sold in 2013 by Stack’s Bowers, and at the time set the world record for its price. This coin was also preserved in pristine, mint-state condition, described by some as almost perfect. Some numismatists think that it was the first silver dollar ever minted in the U.S.

2. 1877 Half Union - $15 million

The Half Unions were minted from 1849 to 1907. Image credit:

The Smithsonian Institute is also 全民彩娱乐平台官网 to two specimens of the second-most valuable gold coin, the 1877 Half Union. The Half Unions were minted from 1849 to 1907, and two beauties are the only two that are known to exist. They are in denominations of $50 and were minted but not meant to be released.

1. 1849 Double Eagle – $20 million

The 1849 Double Eagle is said to be the rarest coin in the world. Image credit: www.usacoinbook.com

Many consider this 1849 specimen to be the rarest and most valuable coin in U.S. history. It dates back to the California Gold Rush, when this gold coin had a $20 value. Before 1849, the highest denomination for a United States gold coin was $10. It was minted in Philadelphia, and there is only one known of in existence. The Double Eagle is located at the Smithsonian Institution.

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