"Philodemic Society"

lordmarcovanlordmarcovan Posts: 41,055 ✭✭✭✭✭
"Philodemic Society"



Intaglio seal matrix carved on 1838 Coronet large cent





image



Larger obverse image

Larger reverse image



Obverse: original Coronet Liberty Head design, unaltered except for traces of old mounting at center. Reverse: intaglio carving of a Federal eagle carrying olive branch[?], with lyre and rays above, "+ + + + + Philodemica Societas ~ G [?] I [?] + + + + +" in italic script below. Ex-"numismaniacal", eBay, 11/16/2015.



I found this piece fascinating, and liked the eagle on it. It appears to have been a hand-carved intaglio seal matrix, though I'm not sure whether it was intended to make inked impressions or wax seals for documents. I suspect the latter.



The Philodemic Society is a literary society and debating organization which was founded at Georgetown University in 1830 and is still in existence today. The seal for which the coin was carved must have been fairly early, judging from its style and the fact that the current seal of the society now appears to be different, featuring a caduceus crossed with a liberty cap on a pole. I rather prefer the eagle and lyre seen here.



I had to beat out some solid competition for this piece on eBay, but was happily able to win it for around two-thirds of the "nuclear" snipe I had set.



You must admit it's intriguing, and is quite possibly unique.



image





Engraved/Counterstamped/Oddball Type Set





Comments

  • TreashuntTreashunt Posts: 4,346 ✭✭✭✭✭
    really interesting, and I would have pushed your bid, if I had seen it.



    Congrats
    Frank

    BHNC #203

  • LochNESSLochNESS Posts: 4,776 ✭✭✭
    Now THAT is awesome.
    ANA LM • WBCC 429

    Amat Colligendo Focum

    Top 10FOR SALE

    image
  • messydeskmessydesk Posts: 15,656 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Haven't seen one of those before. Very cool!
  • CaptHenwayCaptHenway Posts: 26,270 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Kewl!
    As they say in the wallpaper trade, "How's it hanging?"
  • AnkurJAnkurJ Posts: 11,232 ✭✭✭
    Gorgeous!
    All coins kept in bank vaults.
    PCGS Registries
    Box of 20
    SeaEagleCoins: 11/14/54-4/5/12. Miss you Larry!
  • cmerlo1cmerlo1 Posts: 6,863 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Very cool.
    You Suck! Awarded 6/2008- 1901-O Micro O Morgan, 8/2008- 1878 VAM-123 Morgan, 7/2013- 1983 No-S Proof Set
  • rickoricko Posts: 64,505 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Very impressive... You might try shining a black light on it to see if old traces of wax

    show up.... Cheers, RickO
  • ashelandasheland Posts: 12,379 ✭✭✭✭✭
    That's really cool, Rob! image
  • lordmarcovanlordmarcovan Posts: 41,055 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Originally posted by: ricko

    Very impressive... You might try shining a black light on it to see if old traces of wax

    show up.... Cheers, RickO




    That's an interesting idea. I might have to try that. I'm pretty sure this would've been a wax seal rather than something used for ink impressions. You can sort of tell that by looking at some of the details inside the eagle carving.
  • DUIGUYDUIGUY Posts: 7,515 ✭✭✭
    image
    “A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly."



    - Marcus Tullius Cicero, 106-43 BC
  • lordmarcovanlordmarcovan Posts: 41,055 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Y'know, if one looks carefully at the recessed areas at the bottom of the lyre, along the top edge of the eagle's wings and around his head, and in the branch, It looks like maybe there are traces of red sealing wax visible... no black light needed! (?)
  • The letters after "Philodemica Societies" appear to be G C for Georgetown College. Contemporary letters usually show Georgetown to be written with two words (George Town). If you can discover when the switch went from two words to one, you may be able to date it. Also, there is a smaller Christian college of the same name in Georgetown, Ky. The dates line up, but it doesn't seem to have a debating society.
  • BroadstruckBroadstruck Posts: 28,372 ✭✭✭✭✭
    That's pretty awesome image



    Based on the two holes on the obverse wonder if there was a knob attached at some point to more easily push it into the wax image
    To Err Is Human.... To Collect Err's Is Just Too Much Darn Tootin Fun!
  • CoinosaurusCoinosaurus Posts: 9,035 ✭✭✭✭
    Just when you think you've seen everything...neat!
  • lordmarcovanlordmarcovan Posts: 41,055 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Originally posted by: ahopewell55

    The letters after "Philodemica Societies" appear to be G C for Georgetown College. Contemporary letters usually show Georgetown to be written with two words (George Town). If you can discover when the switch went from two words to one, you may be able to date it. Also, there is a smaller Christian college of the same name in Georgetown, Ky. The dates line up, but it doesn't seem to have a debating society.




    Thanks.





    Originally posted by: Broadstruck

    Based on the two holes on the obverse wonder if there was a knob attached at some point to more easily push it into the wax image




    Yes, I think that was almost certainly the case.
  • ProfHaroldHillProfHaroldHill Posts: 1,276 ✭✭✭
    Glad this got bumped. That's something I've never even heard of before, what to speak of having seen.

    (Wonder if the Penny Lady has anything like it. She's got a very kewl collection of 'pennies' made into all manner of interesting stuff.)


    NumisMagician: Guardian of culture, purveyor of history.

    Items are currently listed on both US and World BST Threads, w/more added until they're all gone!


  • TopographicOceansTopographicOceans Posts: 6,545 ✭✭✭✭
    That's a great design.
    I think the obverse pit adds character.
  • lordmarcovanlordmarcovan Posts: 41,055 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Thought I'd bump this, since I just refused a rather tempting (and quite fair) offer on it from a fellow collector.



    I told him he has first rights of refusal on this piece if and when I do decide to sell or swap it, but it's just a bit of a favorite in this present collection of engraved pieces, is all.



    As of this posting, this remains the only coin in my quirky little "Oddball" engraved type set that I paid more than a hundred bucks for (and that only barely.)
  • savoyspecialsavoyspecial Posts: 7,107 ✭✭✭
    okay Lord Minivan, you are a formidable opponent but check your PM inbox....

    ...I know you're still up chainsmoking and typing frantically to internet chatboards
  • rickoricko Posts: 64,505 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Good to see this again.... and I agree, on careful examination, the red 'color' could well be residual sealing wax..... Still a great find LordM.... Cheers, RickO
  • ashelandasheland Posts: 12,379 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Lord Minivan image
  • lordmarcovanlordmarcovan Posts: 41,055 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Originally posted by: asheland

    Lord Minivan image




    Its only the Old School ones who call me that. image
  • ElKevvoElKevvo Posts: 3,265 ✭✭✭
    Great piece and really cool history. Thanks for bumping this as I missed it the first go around.



    K
    ANA LM and C4 Member
  • lordmarcovanlordmarcovan Posts: 41,055 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Ready for the shocker?



    This, arguably the "cherry" of my humble little Oddball engraved set (if only by virtue of being the sole piece I paid north of $100- for- barely-)... just got cherrypicked.



    By none other than the individual who had the effrontery to call me "Lord Minivan". Hmph. image



    Oh, well. I made him pay. Haha.



    In the end, I dunno who squeezed whom harder, or did the best cajoling, but the bottom line looked good to me so I just " flipped" it.



    So now I will go shopping for another treasure.



    Geez, I've gotta stop letting people cherrypick my collection, even if I do turn a buck or three.



    Makes it an uphill struggle. image

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