Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Numismatic titles in archive.org's National Emergency Library

On March 24, 2020 archive.org released for unlimited borrowing the 1.4 million book titles they call the National Emergency Library.

They believe the global pandemic justifies their action. (They give their legal and moral justification here.)

The National Emergency Library is not just medical books. It is everything they have. For the duration of the emergency you can download all kinds of amazing things. Here is a list of their numismatic holdings by decade. It includes some very rare auction catalogs and club journals.

I encourage everyone looking for an at-home project to consider finishing your own numismatic works and prepare them for publication. Stay home. Use this library for research during the pandemic.

Monday, March 09, 2020

Older CNG catalogs

The auction house Classical Numismatic Group has an excellent web site with a good search engine that can be used to study over 300,000 coins and related objects that have appeared in their sales.

The searchable database begins with sale 60 (22 May 2002).

CNG sold many important coins before their 60th sale. Some of their old catalogs are for sale at CNG's own catalog site. They can also sometimes be found in book auctions. A brief index of the focus of each catalog can be found on Warren Esty's site.

Many people don't know that catalogs for sales 1-56 have been uploaded as searchable PDF files and are freely downloadable. I have created a simple list of direct links to the catalogs.

  1. CNA I
  2. CNA II
  3. CNA III
  4. CNA IV
  5. CNA V
  6. CNA VI
  7. CNA VII
  8. CNA VIII
  9. CNA IX
  10. CNA X
  11. CNA XI
  12. CNA XII
  13. CNA XIII
  14. CNA XIV
  15. CNA XV
  16. CNA XVI
  17. CNA XVII
  18. CNA XVIII
  19. CNA XIX
  20. CNA XX
  21. CNA XXI
  22. CNG XXII
  23. CNG XXIII
  24. CNG XXIV
  25. CNG XXV
  26. CNG XXVI
  27. CNG XXVII
  28. CNG XXVIII
  29. CNG XXIX
  30. CNG XXX
  31. CNG XXXI
  32. CNG XXXII
  33. CNG XXXIII
  34. CNG XXXIV
  35. CNG 35
  36. CNG 36
  37. CNG 37
  38. CNG 38
  39. CNG 39
  40. CNG 40
  41. CNG 41
  42. CNG 41
  43. CNG 43 September 24, 1997
  44. 44 was Triton I. CNG Triton I
  45. CNG 45 March 18, 1998
  46. CNG 46
  47. CNG 47 September 16, 1998
  48. 48 was Triton II. CNG Triton II
  49. CNG 49 March 17, 1999
  50. CNG 50
  51. CNG 51 September 15, 1999
  52. 52 was Triton III. CNG Triton III
  53. CNG 53 March 15, 2000
  54. CNG 54
  55. CNG 55
  56. 56 was Triton IV. CNG Triton IV part 1 and CNG Triton IV part 2

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Wearing down a replica to make it appear genuine

The 19th century forger Becker discovered he could make his product seem genuine by applying artificial wear.

It seems some modern forgers have relearned his trick. Antiquanova.com sells nice replica Neapolis staters for 45 euro in fine silver and 6 euro in tin.

A UK-based eBay seller has the following coin listed with 6 days remaining. Six bidders have worked it up to £26.00.

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

NFC chips coming to slabs

CoinWeek reported on December 27 that PCGS will partner with HID Global to begin embedding high security Near Field Communication (NFC) chip technology in slabs starting in early 2020. There will be apps for NFC-enabled smartphones to verify the slabs are authentic, and to display the information on the slab. Typically NFC readers need to be 4cm or closer to read the chips. It may be possible to read the chips from a few feet away using a giant circular antenna.

Monday, December 16, 2019

Changes at Corpus Nummorum Online

I recently noticed that Corpus Nummorum Online is greatly enlarged. Many new coins, and a new search engine. This project is worth keeping an eye on.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

New gold bullion counterfeiting scam

Peter Hobson reports for Reuters on “Fake-branded bars”.

These aren't bars that are short of gold. The fakes are said to contain legit gold, but stamped with the names of refineries that did not issue the bars.

It is said to be a way to launder conflict gold. Many of the forged bars are said to originate in China.

Over the last three years, over 1000 bars worth over $50,000,000 have been found.

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Crime currencies

It is difficult to search for these stories, because there is a crypto currency also called “Italian Lira”. The crypto version has a total market cap of 1 BTC (about $14,000 USD).