Introducing Kosher Carver

By Chris Dempsey, LM64

In November of 2011, I picked up a wonderful example of this carving off of eBay, buy it now, for a mere $104. Doing what I always do after acquiring a new coin I began to search the database from my website as well as the OHNS website for possible matches to it. I stumbled upon the "ICHGEBIBLE" carving hiding in Verne Walrafen's "Kosher Carvings" article and decided to wait and see if a third carving would become available I could match it to. As luck would have it, I didn't have to wait long! Less than a week later, the third carving with the Hebrew text on it appeared on eBay, which I was certain, was a match.

Click to view enlargment. Click to view enlargment. Click to view enlargment.

Coming up with a nickname was relatively easy for this one. Since I found the first coin as part of Verne Walrafen's "Kosher Carvings" article, and the third coin also had Jewish undertones, I've decided to name this carver "Kosher Carver."

The Carving Characteristics for "Kosher Carver" are listed as follows:

  1. Three dimensional domed hat with wrap around brim is carved in high relief, deeply cut behind the head and in the field around the dome.
  2. Nose is rounded in front of the eye, altering the profile.
  3. Hair and Beard are comprised of short cuts, giving it a scraggly look, which extend all the way up and across the forehead.
  4. Collar is one single strip, with a triangular cut at base of the neck for a ribbon.
  5. Liberty is removed when additional lettering is added.
  6. All known carvings are on early dated host coins.
  7. Details are cut and smoothed.
  8. Ear is comprised of two simple swirls; one inner and one outer.
  9. Mouth is sometimes altered to show the subject smiling.