Skip to content


Edition.  An emission, an issue of medals or collectable objects; the entire number of like items offered for sale at one time. If the quantity to be produced is announced prior to the items being first offered on the market, it is called a limited edition.

Edition size is important for many reasons. The publisher, obviously, wants a large issue for maximum sales and profits. Potential buyers want as small an edition as possible, thus making the object they own to be scarcer and more valuable. Choosing the edition size or limit in advance is difficult, as picking the ideal number between these two extremes is speculative. Also no publisher will know for certain in advance the popularity of any item for sale.

The greatest hindrance in edition marketing is unsold inventory, the remainder hanging over the market. It will depress the market price and adversely affect the secondary market where supply and demand determine a secondary market value. Officials of the Franklin Mint tried to solve this problem early in 1970s by setting an ordering deadline. Only those orders received by this deadline would be manufactured, thus eliminating any unsold inventory.

excerpted with permission from

An Encyclopedia of Coin and Medal Technology

For Artists, Makers, Collectors and Curators


Roger W. Burdette, Editor

NNP is 100% non-profit and independent // Your feedback is essential and welcome. // Your feedback is essential and welcome.