The Survival Estimate represents an average of one or more experts' opinions as to how many examples survive of a particular coin in three categories: 1) all grades, 2) 60 or better, and 3) 65 or better. These estimates are based on a variety of sources, including population reports, auction appearances, and personal knowledge. Survival estimates include coins that are raw, certified by PCGS, and certified by other grading services.
Numismatic Rarity converts the Survival Estimate for a particular coin into a number from 1 to 10 (with decimal increments) based on the PCGS Rarity Scale. The higher the number, the more rare the coin.
Relative Rarity By Type
Relative Rarity By Type ranks the rarity of this coin with all other coins of this Type. Lower numbers indicate rarer coins.
Relative Rarity By Series
Relative Rarity By Series ranks the rarity of this coin with all other coins of this Series. Lower numbers indicate rarer coins.
David Akers (1975/88):
Undoubtedly because of the "common date" status of the other S Mint Half Eagles of the 1880's (except for the 1883-S and 1884-S which are also underrated), the 1888-S is generally regarded as a common date as well. As the auction data shows, however, it is not at all common and is actually very scarce in all grades and surprisingly rare in strictly uncirculated condition. I have seen only a few mint state pieces and consider this date to be very rare and undervalued. The 1888-S is much more rare in high grades than either the 1883-S or 1884-S and is as rare and equally unappreciated as the rare S Mint Half Eagles from 1895-1897.
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