The E-Sylum v6#47, November 2, 2003

whomren at whomren at
Sun Nov 2 20:51:42 PST 2003

Welcome to The E-Sylum: Volume 6, Number 47, November 2, 2003:
an electronic publication of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.
Copyright (c) 2003, The Numismatic Bibliomania Society.


   Among recent new subscribers are Karl Kabelac, courtesy
   of Nick Graver, and Gawain O'Connor.  Welcome aboard!

   We now have 600  subscribers!  Karl was #600 at the time
   he subscribed, but we lost another subscriber in the meantime.
   Gawain's subscription brought us back to 600.  It would be
   nice to end the year with a healthy margin above 600.  If you
   know someone who might be interested in our publication,
   please invite them to subscribe.


   Bill Rosenblum writes: "We're optimistic that things seem to
   be looking better for George and his family and his books.
   Wednesday we had wildfires raging in Colorado but the
   temperatures dropped 50 plus degrees in 12 hours, plus
   light winds and freezing rain made us all very happy.  Had
   dinner last night with Jesse Patrick and both he and I send
   our best to George."

   Bill McDonald writes: "Please convey to George the concerns
   of those of us at the Classical & Medieval Numismatic Society
   for him and his family - in fact on behalf of all numismatists in
   Canada as we, in a number of areas in Canada have gone
   through what George and his family are experiencing, although
   not on such a large scale as the tragic events now unfolding in
   California. Also we welcome the recent news that the situation
   may be getting under control and hope and pray that all danger
   may soon be over."

   Barry Tayman writes: "Thanks for the update and the continued
   good news.  We are all grateful for your assistance in keeping
   us informed. Hopefully, George's house and contents will
   continue to be spared."

   Ray Williams writes: "Thanks Wayne for keeping us informed as
   to the Kolbe's being okay and that their home is ok so far.
   I'll share this info with the colonial egroups."

   This afternoon the following note appeared on George's
   web site (

        Due to fire threat in Crestline:
       11/2/03 1:00 PM PST
       Evacuation for most of Crestline has been lifted.
       George has returned home. Office, house and
       property fine. No power. Phone problematical.
       No FAX or Internet.

   We can all breathe a sigh of relief now.  With luck George
   will be back online by next week and will provide us with
   a first-person update.


   David Gladfelter writes: "Thanks for this info. I am reminded of
   the question asked by the character in H. G. Welles's Time
   Machine, if you could choose only one book from your library
   to take with you, which one would it be?  I have no idea how to
   answer that question and I would hate to be in a situation where
   I would have to, but that's what has happened to 2,600 families
   in the paths of the California wildfires, thankfully not including
   George and Linda."

   [So, dear readers, how would you answer the question?
   If you could save just one item from your numismatic library,
   what would it be, and why?  -Editor]


   E. Tomlinson Fort, the editor of our print journal, The Asylum,
   writes: "It has been wonderful to see all the outpouring of good
   wishes for George Kolbe and his family during these fire
   disasters in California.

   While the Kolbe's remain in our prayers let us not forget the
   thousands who have lost homes and possessions during this
   tragedy.   Also, stop and remember the firemen who are daily
   risking their lives battling these fires.  On National Public Radio
   yesterday they interviewed a fireman who had been on the
   front line 36 hours without break for either food or sleep.
   During the interview he was finally getting a chance to have
   some breakfast which would be followed by a few hours sleep.
   These men and women are the true heroes of this crisis and
   they deserve thanks and generosity of the entire country.

   On a happier note, The Asylum is on its way to the printer
   and should be arriving in people's mailboxes within the next
   fortnight. The contents are:

   "Recollections of D. Wayne Johnson" as told to Pete Smith.
   "Ghostwriting in Numismatics," by David W. Lange.
   "The Printer’s Devil: Bowers, Books and Bloviation,"
    by Joel J. Orosz.
   "About the Cover: A Rare Vellum Edition of Andrea Fulvio’s
   Illustrium Imagines," by George Frederick Kolbe
   "President’s Message," by Pete Smith.
   "Numismatic Literature Bibliography 2000-2003,"
   by E. Tomlinson Fort..

   The Fall 2003 issue is almost finished and we hope to have
   it on its way to the printer in a couple of weeks."


   Alan V. Weinberg  writes: "For those who hadn't heard, the
   New England sixpence in the Oct 22 Bonham sale in London
   was withdrawn "for further study" due to serious questions
   posted via email from a number of numismatists.

   This info came from Andrew Litherland, Bonham's numismatic


   Granvyl Hulse, Numismatics International Librarian writes:
   "The NI Library must store a number of its books because of
   lack of shelf space. The box is not a problem, but I would like
   to know what to use to wipe off the covers before inserting
   them in the box. Should something be placed between the
   books to keep them from touching each other, and if so what,
   and is it okay to use silica jell in each box to absorb any


   Speaking of book storage, while waiting in line at Home
   Depot last week I noticed that the latest issue of the
   This Old House magazine has a feature article about
   built-in bookcases.  (Issue No. 73, November 2003)
   The article isn't online, however.

   I was running an errand for the Pennsylvania Association
   of Numismatists coin show and convention last weekend.
   It was setup day, and the crew was running out of extension
   cords.  So I stopped to buy some.  Forty of them, actually.
   That raised a few eyebrows in the checkout aisle.  So I
   told them my cell phone battery died....


   David F. Fanning,  Editor-in-Chief of our print journal,
   The Asylum writes: "I need to know what lot 630 brought
   in the Bangs sale of the Idell collection (Catalogued by E.J.
   Attinelli), January 8-9, 1878.  A buyer's name would be
   great, too, if someone has it.  Thanks."

   [By the way, congratulations are in order for David.  He
   received his Ph.D. in English from the Ohio State University
   on Tuesday!  -Editor]


   On Wednesday, October 29, the Reuters news service
   reported that: "Almost two years after the introduction of the
   euro, nostalgic Germans are hoarding some 25 billion
   Deutschmark coins -- worth about $4.2 billion -- as souvenirs.

   The number of coins being held is about half the 49 billion
   Deutschmark coins in circulation just before the single
   European currency was launched in January 2001, said
   Bundesbank spokeswoman Gabriele Reitz-Werner on Tuesday."


   Bruce Perdue, our volunteer webmaster writes: "This address
   allows you access to all of the E-Sylum newsletters that have
   been sent  since September 2002.

   [Binhost is the company that manages our mailing list and
   forwards The E-Sylum to everyone on the list.  They post
   a copy on their server automatically, any this has been taking
   place since we started using them in September 2002.  So it
   makes a nice backup copy of The E-Sylum and is one place
   to turn if the latest issue isn't yet on our society website


   Kavan Ratnatunga writes: "My interest is in coins that
   circulated in Lanka, for which the primary reference is
   Codrington's Coins and Currency of Ceylon published
   in 1924. It lists (pp 36-45) many ancient Greek and
   Roman coins which have been found in Ceylon.
   However, the identifications given are to

   1) G.C.H.C. Greek coins in the Huntarian Collection.
            Vol III George MacDonald, Glasgow, 1905

   2) C. Medailles Imperiales, H. Cohen, Paris 1880-1892

   3) T. Monnaises Byzantines, J. Tolstoi, Petersburgh 1912

   Please let me know if anyone has worked out a cross
   index from these catalog references to those of modern
   catalogs, as online in websites such as wildwinds.  Any
   advice on how to create such an index will also be

   With best regard
   Kavan at"


   Gar Travis found a few tidbits about the Society of
   International Numismatics on the web, but so far no
   one has been able to confirm that the society is still
   active.   Some of the references use "OF" in the society's
   name, and some use "FOR".  So we're unclear on the
   exact name of the group as well.  If anyone can straighten
   us out, please let us know.


   In his search Gar located an interesting page on Howard
   Daniel's web site.  It consists of definitions of certain areas
   of numismatics as defined by The Society for International
   Numismatics.  I've duplicated the text here for E-Sylum
   readers.  (Hopefully, I won't get a scolding email from
   Howard in Vietnam).  The web page reference is:

   Exonumia:  is that area of numismatics which deals with
   primitive media of exchange; substitutes for money like hard
   times tokens and scrip but no gold; special purpose tokens
   and scrip like transportation, vending amusement, parking
   tokens and canteen chits; patterns, essays, trial pieces,
   experimental pieces and pieforts; pieces de plaisir, mint sports
   and off metal pieces; jetons and counters; medals, medallions
   and medalets; orders and decorations; coin weights; coin
   scales; and charms, amulets and temple pieces.  Source: The
   Society for International Numismatics, 1974.

   Mesonumia:  is that area of numismatics which deals with all
   coins and paper money which could have circulated as money,
   but did not, due to their being used as backing for currency,
   or for any other reason which kept it from general circulation.
   This includes proofs, specimen and presentation pieces and
   sets of general circulating coinage or paper money,
   commemorative issues of coinage or paper money to raise
   money and not otherwise meant for circulation, bullion coinage,
   and mules and hybrid coins.  Source: The Society for
   International Numismatics, 1974.

   Numia:  is that area of numismatics which deals exclusively
   with circulating medium of exchange; specifically, all coins
   and paper money which is or was used in general circulation
   for everyday commerce.  This includes regular general coinage,
   regular issues of paper money, commemoratives put into
   general circulation, tokens and scrip in general circulation before
   government issues, obsidional and siege pieces, only those
   restrickes which are put into general circulation, and limited
   general issue for special purposes like military payment
   certificates.  Source: The Society for International Numismatics,

   Pseudonumia:  is that are a of numismatics which deals with
   those items which were produced to exploit numismatists and
   collectors.  This includes counterfeits, spurious pieces and
   forgeries; Beckers, paduans and jewelry; fantasy pieces and
   pieces de fantaises; restrickes, abschlag and refreppe; and
   electrotypes and replicas.  Source: The Society for International
   Numismatics, 1974.


   Referring to his CD of  "18th Century Contemporary
   Counterfeits, British & Irish,"  Clem Schettino writes:
   "I would like to announce that my CD is about to be
   released in its Third Edition. I have added approximately
   100 more images.  You can find more information about
    it here:

   The pricing structure is as follows...
   I sell them for $45 to "people", $25 to researcher-cataloger
   types. I charge  $12 for Third Editions if you already have
   purchased Edition One or Two. I plan to charge $5 for the
   Third Editions if you hold both One AND Two. $5 each is
   what I pay to have them burned, labeled and for supplies
   and the time of my editor.

   At $5 I would like to hand deliver them at the C4 convention
   or would appreciate a couple of dollars for postage and a
   padded mailer.

   I will have a limited number of CD's with me at the C4
   convention so if you would like to purchase yours there
   please email me with you order. Thanks for your support."


   Howard A. Daniel III writes: "By the time you have read this
   here, I will be back from a four day visit to Hanoi looking for
   my numismatic and related stuff.  All available time not seeing
   people will be in book stores!  One book that was unknown
   to me, I have been told, is available in Hanoi but not here in
   Ho Chi Minh City is "Dong Tien Nam Bo Khang Chien, Dong
   Tien Viet Nam Chien Thang" (Banknotes of Nam Bo in
   Resistance Time, Banknote of Vietnam's Victory"  and it was
   published by the Ngan Hang Nha Nuoc (State Bank) in July
   1993.  I have been told it has 155 pages and is 12x33 cm in

   "Nam Bo" is the southern third of Viet Nam or what used to
   be French Cochinchina.  The "victory" in the title is when
   they defeated the French in 1954.  Books here are usually
   printed in low numbers (1000-5000) for a population of
   about 80 million, so I am not too optimistic of finding one
   or more copies, but I will be looking for it.   If I find it, and
   there is more than one in their supply, I will try to buy at
   least five of them so I can distribute them to others
   interested in this area."


   Responding to last week's item about the new full-text
   book search at, Ed Sible reports:
   "Three fully searchable numismatic books in Amazon's new
   program are:

   Handbook of Ancient Greek and Roman Coins (Klawans),

   Ancient History from Coins (Howgego),

   Coin Collecting For Dummies (Guth),"

   The December 2003 issue of Wired magazine will feature an
   article titled "The Great Library of Amazonia" by Gary Wolf.
   The article has been posted online, and I've extracted a few
   sections of note to researchers.

   "The fondest dream of the information age is to create an
   archive of all knowledge. You might call it the Alexandrian
   fantasy, after the great library founded by Ptolemy I in 286 BC.
   Through centuries of aggressive acquisition, the librarians of
   Alexandria, Egypt, collected hundreds of thousands of texts.
   None survives. During a final wave of destruction, in AD 641,
   invaders fed the bound volumes and papyrus scrolls into the
   furnaces of the public baths, where they are said to have
   burned for six months. "The lesson," says Brewster Kahle,
   founder of the Internet Archive, "is to keep more than one

   "Books are an ancient and proven medium. Their physical
   form inspires passion. But their very physicality makes books
   inaccessible to the multi-terabyte databases of modern
   Alexandrian projects.  Books take time to transport. Their
   text vanishes and their pages yellow in a rash of foxing. Most
   important, it's still shockingly difficult to find information
   buried in books. Even as the Internet has revived hope of a
   universal library and Google seems to promise an answer to
   every query, books have remained a dark region in the
   universe of information. We want books to be as accessible
   and searchable as the Web.  On the other hand, we still
   want them to be books."

   "An ingenious attempt to illuminate the dark region of books
   is under way at Over the past spring and
   summer, the company created an unrivaled digital archive
   of more than 120,000 books.  The goal is to quickly add
   most of Amazon's multimillion-title catalog."

   "And yet most books are not on the Net. This means that
   students, among others, are blind to the most important
   artifacts of human knowledge.  For many students, the
   Internet actually contracts the universe of knowledge,
   because it makes the most casual and ephemeral sources
   the most accessible, while ignoring the published books.
   "It's shameful,"

   [One key point the article makes is that the value of the
    feature is in the connections researchers can now among
    a vast array of books on all subjects.  Heretofore unknown
    mentions of numismatic topics could be brought to light.
    For example, a newly-published diary of a Civil War era
    soldier might mention the use of coins and scrip or sutler
    notes.  Such primary accounts are needles in a haystack
    today, but a powerful search tool could enable researchers
    to find them much more easily.

   To read the full article, see:,1367,60948,00.html


   Gawain O'Connor writes: I saw the reference to W.B. Yeats
   and the design of Irish coinage. (Sept. 28, 2003).   If it wasn't
   mentioned, perhaps your readers would like to know that the
   article Designing Of Ireland's Coinage (W. B. Yeats) was
   reprinted in "The Numismatist", Vol.80 1967 April Pg. 411
   and also in The Coinage and Banknotes of Ireland  1928-68
   by Jerome H. Remick, Almanzar's 1967. "


   Gawain O'Connor adds: "On a completely different topic,
   something I recently noticed:   Did you know that Mr. Canada
   is president of the Bank of England?

   The Bank of England, Arkansas, that is!

   Thanks for your great work!"


   This week's featured web page pictures the old and
   new coins of Germany.

  Wayne Homren
  Numismatic Bibliomania Society

  The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is a
  non-profit organization promoting numismatic
  literature.   For more information please see
  our web site at
  There is a membership application available on
  the web site.  To join, print the application and
  return it with your check to the address printed
  on the application. For those without web access,
  write to W. David Perkins, NBS Secretary-Treasurer,
  P.O. Box 212, Mequon, WI  53092-0212.

  For Asylum mailing address changes and other
  membership questions, contact David at this email
  address: wdperki at

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