1970-S U.S. quarter struck on Canadian 25-cent coin up for auction

A U.S. 1970-S quarter overstruck on a Canadian George V 25-cent coin is set to cross the block at an auction in Texas this August.

Offered as Lot 3860 of Heritage Auctions’ Aug. 3-9 U.S. Coins Signature Auction, the error – an overstrike – is certified as Proof-64 by Numismatic Guaranty Corporation with a weight of 5.3 grams.

An overstrike, as described in the Royal Canadian Numismatic Association’sNumismatic Correspondence Course (Part II),” is “a coin stuck over another coin.”

“During the 1911 to 1936 era of the George V Canada quarter, the coin weighed 5.83 grams and had a diameter of 23.6 mm, compared to a clad Washington quarter weight of 5.67 grams and a diameter of 24.3 mm,” reads the catalogue for next week’s seven-day auction.

The Latin words ‘REX ET’ (from ‘REX ET IND’) are seen on the reverse of the overstrike, where the outline of King George V’s shoulder is found near the ‘AMER’ in ‘AMERICA.’

‘A PRANK’

“The most likely cause of the present wrong planchet proof mint error is a prank,” according to auctioneers, who offer a suggestion: “somebody surreptitiously added a silver Canada quarter to a bin of proof clad quarter planchets.”

“That person had no hope of recovering the struck piece, and the gesture was presumably intended to invoke wonder or joy in the lucky eventual purchaser of the coin, via a 1970-S proof set ordered directly from the U.S. Mint.”

Most of the Canadian design is effaced by the Washington quarter striking; however, some maple leaves from the undertype are visible across the obverse; “REX ET” (from “REX ET IND”) is seen on the reverse; and the outline of the king’s shoulder is found near the “AMER” in “AMERICA.”

As of July 28 – six days before the auction – the lot had a current bid of $4,600 US (about $6,150 Cdn.).

To browse the 1,826-lot auction, visit bit.ly/2ZMFSYl.

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