The 1928 penny

Obverse & Reverse



There are no die pairing varieties of the 1928 penny. John Dean1 reported some minor varieties which are combinations of "breaks" in the rim letters. They are interesting in that they seem to be peculiar to the 1928 issue.

The specimen on this page illustrates five such breaks, one more than noted by Dean.

1. Bottom loop of 8 in date (reverse)
2. Top loop of 8 in date (reverse)
3. O in OMN (obverse)
4. O in GEORGIVS (obverse)
5. Top of 2 in date (reverse)
Minor varieties

Broken loops in 8, broken 2

Broken O in OMN

Broken O in GEORGIVS

Do not let anybody try to tell you that a coin exhibiting one or more of these breaks is a rare variety. Out of 33 1928 pennies in my reference collection, 27 (just over 80%) show some evidence of the faults described above.

The letter/number breaks may have been caused by die filling but because they are so common, it is more likely that they were caused by damaged working punches. Some slight support for this conjecture is lent by the observation that the lettering on both sides of the coin is heavily fishtailed, suggesting die spread in the punch and/or master tools. More significantly, the faults are observed in transverse features only. If die filling were the cause then one would expect to see it on both transverse and radial features.

It is a bit of a mystery that these faults are observed only in the 1928 pennies (but have a look at the 1929 penny).

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Most recent revision: 4th August 2002: Added notes on prevalence of broken features.
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