Rare Five Cent coin becomes $23,000 'top selling' eBay auction

A rare five cent coin with a minting error has brought a winning bid of $23,850 in a seven day auction on eBay.

The coin, a five cent U.S. Nickel (NGC AU50), was minted in 1916 with an error that resulted in the year (1916) appearing to have been stamped twice and slightly overlapped on its surface.

It is also known in the collecting world as a 'Double Die Obverse'.

"Doubled die" is the numismatic term used to refer to doubling in the design elements of a coin.


Double Die Obverse coins are highly
sought-after among collectors

This is evident when the coin's legends, dates or other design aspects appear twice in an overlapping fashion.

Notable examples include the famous 1955 Double Die Obverse cent, which popularised such coins as treasures among collectors.

"Coins with minting errors are a popular category on eBay, but it's not often that we see the bidding go this high," said James Massey of WhatSellsBest, a company which tracks top-selling eBay items.

This is the latest in a recent series of big sales for eBay, which remains the world's most popular collectibles auction site.

A pair of shoes once thrown at former Australian Prime Minister John Howard have reportedly been sold for $3,650, after auctioning on the site earlier this month.

The world's only jet-turbine powered Batmobile car (albeit only a lovingly-made replica) appeared for sale.

And fans of the reality TV series Big Brother fired up their internet connections to bid on the show's spooky clairvoyant robot, pushing its value all the way up to $7,600.

But, in testament to the ever-popularity of numismatics, the $23,850 'Double Die Obverse' coin sale has apparently surpassed them all.

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