Numismatic Dictionary

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There are currently 44 names in this directory beginning with the letter F.
F # or F Number
A catalog number for United States currency. See also Friedberg Number.

face value
The legal-tender value assigned to a given coin by the governing authority.

A counterfeit or altered coin

fantasy coins
coins that look like real coins but represent something else. An example of a fantasy coin is one that was made to look like the 1964-D Peace Dollar that is alleged not to exist.

fantasy piece
A term applied to coins struck at the whim of Mint officials

far date
A variation in the coin design where the year appears smaller than on other coins in the same series. This is commonly used to describe the date varieties on the 1979 Susan B. Anthony dollar coins. See also near date.

Once the lowest denomination of British coinage, it was worth one-quarter of a penny. Term referring the design consists of a bundle of rods banded (wrapped) around an ax with a protruding blade on a Mercury Dime.

A bound bundle of rids with a projecting ax blade that appears on the back of the Winged Liberty "Mercury" Dimes struck from 1916 through 1945.

See also Full Bell Lines.

Federal Reserve
A system of 12 banks and a governing board that acts as the central bank for the United States. The chair of each Federal Reserve branch makes up the Federal Reserve Board. The chairperson of the Federal Reserve Board oversees the operation of the Board and the 12 member banks.

Federal Reserve Bank Notes
Currency that was an obligation of the Federal Reserve Branch for which it was issued. Also called National Currency.

Federal Reserve Board
Governing board of the 12 Federal Reserve banks. See also Federal Reserve.

Federal Reserve Notes
First issued in 1914 by the newly formed Federal Reserve, these are promissory notes backed by the full faith and credit of the United States government.

feeder finger
A part of the coining machine that feeds the planchet into the striking chamber. Occasionally, feeder fingers have broken free and struck by the dies. This is rare type of error coin.

Feuchtwanger Metal
A metal alloy proposed to the Treasury by a New York City dentist, Dr. Lewis Feuchtwanger, consisting of .53 copper, .29 zinc and .18 nickel for use in minor coinage. It is simiar to the allow called German Silver or Nickel Siver. See also nickel silver.

See also Full Head.

fiat money
Money whose value is derived by regulation or law and not on its metal value.

The flat area of a coin’s surface that does not contain a part of the design or inscriptions.

file marks
Evidence on a coin that a file was used to adjust the weight of a coin to a standard.

filled die
A type of error that appears on a coin when a foreign substance, such as grease, fills the elements of a die used to strike coins.

A low-grade coin used to fill a space in a collection. Fillers are usually used in place of rare and other higher priced coins.

The purity of a precious metal measured as a ratio to the number of parts per 1,000 units by its weight. For example, the American Silver Eagle has a fineness ratio of .999 meaning that the coin contains 999 parts per 1,000 total parts of silver by weight. Non-precious metals are usually not specified.

finest known
The coin that is known to be the best preserved of its type. See also grade.

first strike
A coin struck early in the life of a die. First strikes are almost always fully or well struck.

Nickname for the United States three-cent silver coin struck from 1851 through 1873. The nickname was also used for the Canadian silver five-cent coin struck from 1870 through 1921.

flat edge
Term referring to coins where the area on the surface by the edge are flat. See also wire edge.

flat luster
A subdued type of gray or dull luster often seen on coins struck from worn dies.

A clear, flexible plastic holder with two pockets used to display and store coins or medals.

flip rub
Slight discoloration on the highest points of a coin caused by contact with a flip.

In a time before decimalization, a British coin worth two shillings.

flow lines
Visible lines on a coin that was the result from the metal flowing outward from the center of a planchet as it is struck. See also cartwheel.

A copy of a numismatic item made fraudulently either for entry into circulation or for sale to collectors. See also counterfeit.

Fractional Currency
Currency that was issued 1862-1876 to deal with the shortage of coinage. Its issue coincides with the beginning of the Civil War. All fractional currency notes were printed with face values of less than one dollar. There were five issues of Fractional Currency with the first issue known Postage Currency. These are the first currency notes issued by the United States federal government. See also Postage Currency.

Wearing on the high points of a coin’s design caused by rubbing.

Friedberg Number
A system for cataloging United States currency created by Robert Friedberg for his book Paper Money of the United States. The system continues to be used today.

frosted devices
A textured surface of a coin caused by the intentional treating of the dies used in its striking. Frosted surfaces appear to have a matte finish.

The result of treating the dies used to strike the coin to give the high points of the coin a distinct matte appearance.

See also Full Steps.

Fugio Cent
The first authorized issue coin struck by the U.S. government in 1787. Its minting was authorized by the Continental Congress.

Full Bands
A term that describes Mercury (Liberty Head) Dimes that have fully defined bands on the fasces. Abbreviated as FB.

Full Bell Lines
Term used describe Franklin Half Dollars when the lower sets of bell lines on the reverse are complete Abbreviated as FBL.

Full Head
Term used to describe the Standing Liberty Quarter when the helmet on Lady Liberty’s head shows full details. Abbreviated as FH.

Full Steps
Term applied to a Jefferson Nickel when 5½ or 6 steps of Monticello on the reverse are present. Abbreviated as FS.

full strike
A numismatic item that displays the full detail intended by the designer.

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