What Is The Obverse of a Coin? | Coin Obverse Defined

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I’m a coin collector and I’m here to tell you
that if you want to get into this hobby, you need to understand the
language involved. Knowing the terminology will help you avoid
getting scammed and also give you an appreciation for this
fascinating niche. Plus, it’ll make the whole thing a lot more

If you’ve ever researched silver coins or gold
coinsI’ve heard the word “obverse” when it comes to coins, but what
does it really mean? Essentially, the obverse is the front side of
the coin. But which one is the front? That’s a good question.
Whether it’s a penny, nickel, dime, quarter, or other type of coin,
the front typically has a head or face on it. In some cases, the
obverse may also bear a logo or symbol. So, if you’re wondering
which side of a coin is the obverse, just look for a head, face,
logo, or symbol.

Defining the Obverse of a coin

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I’m a coin collector, so I’m familiar with the
term “obverse”. When it comes to coins, the obverse is the ‘heads’
side of the coin. It’s the side that usually has a face, head, or
portrait stamped onto it. There’s no universal standard for what
side is considered the obverse, but it’s widely accepted in
numismatics that the obverse is the ‘heads’ side of a coin.

I’m looking at this coin and I
can see two different images. On the left, there’s an image of a
single head or person, so I’m calling that one the head or obverse.
On the right, there’s another image, which I’m referring to as the
reverse side. Together, these two images make up this

History Behind the Obverse and Reverse of

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I used to manually strike coins with an anvil
and a hammer. The anvil and hammer both had intricate designs
imprinted on them, which were then pressed into the metal flat I
used to make the currency.

I held a piece of metal against the anvil and
hit it with the hammer. I left a design on the back of the coin
with the anvil and one on the front with the hammer. This made it
easy to differentiate the front and back of the coin.

I’m amazed at how advanced coin pressing is
today, all thanks to industrialization! With hydraulic pressure,
mints can generate enough force to accurately press designs onto
coins. But there are two common ways of doing this. One is the
traditional way, with a hammer and anvil dies that are vertically
mounted. The other is a more modern approach, with dies
horizontally mounted, which allows mints to press up to five coins
at once! Ultimately, these advanced techniques make coin pressing
much more efficient.

Watch more videos on the same topic : Which
side of a U.S. coin is the “obverse”?

Video Description


The Obverse of Popular Bullion Coins

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I’m always amazed whenever I look at a coin –
the heads of state from so many different countries! This tradition
goes back to the Roman Empire, where coins were minted with the
image of the ruling Emperor. It’s incredible to think of all the
people who’ve been immortalized on coins throughout history.

I’m no expert on coins, but I do know that coins
are typically stamped with a head of state, symbol, or deity on one
side. That side is known as the obverse. The opposite side is
called the reverse. It’s interesting to think about the different
designs on coins from all around the world.

Let’s take the famed American Silver Eagle coin
as an example.

I take a closer look at this coin and see Lady
Liberty walking boldly towards the sun on one side. I am in awe of
the detail and beauty of the design. On the other side, I see the
Heraldic Eagle from the US National Seal, a powerful symbol of
American pride and heritage. All in all, this is an eye-catching
and impressive coin.

The second most popular silver coinI’m sure
you’ve seen the Canadian Silver Maple Leaf coin before! On the
front of the coin you can make out the beautiful image of the Queen
Elizabeth II. Just take a look at the 25 second mark in the video
and you’ll see exactly what I’m talking about. This is one of the
most recognizable coins in the world and it’s a great
representation of the Canadian monarchy.

There are many other former British colonies
that make bullion coins where that is also the same situation (e.g.
Australian Perth Mint coins)

As you learn more about the bullion coin market,
you will quickly be able to recognize the common coin obverses many
of the most popular bullion coins carry.

If you want to learn more about bullion, be sure
to also pick of free SD Bullion Guide.

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Frequently asked questions

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which side of the us coin is obverse

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