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Provisional

Provisional.  Issued under temporary conditions before something permanent can be established. The coin or medal issued under these conditions is called a provisional issue and is often crude in design, execution or both because of the lack of the full facilities to correctly manufacture the item. A related term is provisional mint – the temporary mint that makes coins or medals – before a fully equipped mint can be set up.

The federal coinage of 1792 is an example of American coins that are provisional. A number of colonial coins would also fall in this category since they were issued under extremely transient conditions. A provisional medal might be the Confederation Government Indian Peace Medal of 1790 (Julian IP-50) issued under the most severe conditions.

The term is used in philately (where it has basically the same meaning) but is in contrast with a "definitive" a stamp of regular issue. The closest term in numismatics in contrast to a provisional is a production run piece.

excerpted with permission from

An Encyclopedia of Coin and Medal Technology

For Artists, Makers, Collectors and Curators

COMPILED AND WRITTEN BY D. WAYNE JOHNSON

Roger W. Burdette, Editor


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