Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC) has announced that it will now attribute the “Spitting Eagle” variety of 1983-P Washington Quarters. The variety is identified by a die clash—a raised line caused by the two dies coming in contact without a planchet—near the mouth of the eagle on the reverse. Its location makes it appear that the eagle is spitting.
This variety is reminiscent of the famous 1891-CC VAM-4 Spitting Eagle Morgan Dollar, which features a small die defect near the eagle’s mouth. The 1891-CC Spitting Eagle is listed in the Top 100 Morgan Dollar Varieties.
Die clashes are seldom seen on modern US coins because improved production practices have led to greater uniformity of coins from a particular date and mint. These varieties are popular with many modern coin collectors who seek examples of these anomalies. The similar “Speared Bison” 2005-D Jefferson Nickel, for example, is ranked 80 in the 100 Greatest U.S. Modern Coins.
The 1983-P Spitting Eagle Washington Quarter will appear in the online NGC Census and VarietyPlus® attribution catalog beginning on July 23.