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(Click on a letter to jump to that page of the glossary.)

Glossary: w

Walker Slang for a Walking Liberty half dollar.

Walking Liberty Common name for a Walking Liberty half dollar.

Walking Liberty half dollar Walking Liberty half dollar Those half dollars struck from 1916 until 1947. The Walking Liberty design by A.A. Weinman undoubtedly was inspired by the popular Saint-Gaudens/Charles Barber Liberty Standing double eagle then current.

War nickel Short for Wartime nickel.

Wartime nickel Those five-cent coins struck during World War II comprised of 35% silver, 9% manganese, and 56% copper. Tradition has been that nickel was needed for the war effort, hence the metallic change. However, recent research has shown that the boost to morale by having an intrinsic-value small denomination coin may have played an important part in the issuance of the Wartime nickel.

Washington quarter Short for Washington quarter dollar.

Washington quarter dollar The John Flanagan designed quarter dollar first struck in 1932 as a circulating commemorative coin. (This was to celebrate the two-hundredth anniversary of George Washington’s birth.) It became a continuing series in 1934 and has been struck every year to 1998, albeit with a different reverse in 1976. In 1999, the obverse was redesigned and the State quarter series began to be struck. Each of the 50 State quarters will have a different reverse design with 5 new issues per year for 10 years.

watery look A look seen on the surfaces of most close-collar Proof coins. Highly polished planchets and dies give the surfaces an almost “wavy” look-hence the term.

weak strike A term used to describe a coin that does not show intended detail because of improper striking pressure or improperly aligned dies.

weenie An individual who is obsessed with a particular series or group of series. Examples are copper weenies, bust half weenies, etc.

wheel mark Synonymous with “counting machine mark.”

whizzing Term to describe the process of mechanically moving the metal of a lightly circulated coin to simulate luster. Usually accomplished by using a wire brush attachment on a high-speed drill.

wire edge The thin, knife-like projection seen on some rims created when metal flows between the collar and the dies. Also, slang for the Wire Edge Indian Head eagle of 1907. See also knife edge, wire rim.

Wire Edge eagle The 1907 Indian Head eagle for which only 500 coins were struck. Technically, a pattern, this design featured a fine wire rim and surfaces unlike any other United States issue. The fields and the devices of the die were heavily polished leaving myriad die striations that transferred to the struck coins. With a combination of satiny and striated surfaces, these rare coins have a look of their own. Often, unknowledgeable numismatists will look at one of these specimens and declare it hairlined or harshly cleaned.

Wire Edge Ten Common name for the 1907-dated Wire Edge Indian Head eagle.

wire rim Alternate form of wire edge.

with arrows Alternate form of arrows at date.

with arrows and rays Alternate form of arrows and rays.

with motto Alternate form of motto.

with rays Alternate for of rays.

wonder coin Slang for a coin whose condition is particularly superb.

working die A die prepared from a working hub and used to strike coins.

working hub A hub created from a master die and used to create the many working dies required for coinage.

World Coins Term applied to coins from countries other than the United States.

worn die A die that has lost detail from extended use. Dies were often used until they wore out or were excessively cracked or broke apart. Coins struck from worn dies often appear to be weakly struck but no amount of striking pressure will produce detail that does not exist.

Wreath cent Common name for the second large cent type of 1793. Complaints about the Chain cent led to the redesign resulting in the Flowing Hair with wreath reverse type.

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