1795 Liberty Cap Half Cent. C-4. Rarity-3. Plain Edge, Punctuated Date. MS-62 BN (PCGS). Type: Type III: Liberty Cap, Head Right, Small Head.Design: Obv: A head of Liberty with flowing hair faces right, a liberty cap and pole behind. The word LIBERTY is inscribed along the upper border and the date 1795 is below. The portrait on Liberty Cap half cents dated 1795 to 1797 is noticeably smaller than for Head Right issue of 1794, and it constitutes a distinct type. Rev: A wreath surrounds the denomination HALF CENT, the legend UNITED STATES OF AMERICA around the border and another expression of the denomination, 1/200, below. A ribbon knot with double bow binds the base of the wreath. The device punches used for the dies of this issue are attributed to Assistant Engraver John Smith Gardner, and they represent a refinement of the basic Liberty Cap, Head Right design executed by Engraver Robert Scot the previous year.Weight Standard: The weight of the half cent was reduced from 104 grains (6.74 grams) to 84 grains (5.44 grams), on January 26, 1796, by presidential proclamation to conform with the Act of March 3, 1795. As all plain edge 1795-dated half cents were struck during calendar year 1796, they were nominally produced to the new weight standard. In practice, however, weights for 1795 Plain Edge coins vary widely, as evidenced by the fact that a survey of examples conducted by Manley (<em>Penny-Wise</em>, Vol. XXXI, No. 2, 1998) confirmed a range of 71 to 88 grains, with an average weight of 79 grains.Diameter: Approximately 23.5 mm.Die Variety: Cohen-4, Breen-4, Gilbert-4. Obv: The popular and easily recognizable "Punctuated Date" variety, so named because of a long, comma-like die defect between the base of the digits 17 in the date. Additional die defects are present at the top of the letters I and R, as well as between the letters TY, in LIBERTY. This die is also used in the C-2a/2b and C-3 pairings. Rev: Single leaf at the top of each branch in the wreath, three berries on the left branch, four on the right branch; there is no berry at either side of the bow. A die scratch extends diagonally left from the top of the letter C in CENT, although this feature is not visible on examples that are softly defined in the center of the reverse. The same die as used in the C-5a/5b pairing.Along with C-2b and C-3, C-4 corresponds to the Plain Edge, Punctuated Date <em>Guide Book</em> variety of the 1795 half cent.Die State: Manley 2.0, the later of two states known to Manley, and the more common among extant examples. Obv: With a prominent bulge from die swelling in the right field and little to no detail within the hair curls in the center of Libertys portrait. Rev: There is a prominent die break from the base of the first letter T in STATES to the leaf below, as well as a lighter crack from the base of the letter A in the same word, through the left wreath branch, into the field above the letter F in HALF. The center is weakly struck, the word HALF in the denomination faint and CENT illegible.Edge: Plain.Mintage: The <em>Guide Book</em> provides a mintage of 139,690 coins for all varieties of the 1795-dated issue. The varieties struck during calendar year 1796 (C-2b through C-6b) are thought to comprise the Mints deliveries from January 22 to June 8 of that year, with an estimated mintage of 114,090 coins. The actual total might be somewhat lower, however, if some or all of the coins delivered on April 19 (3,350 coins) and June 8 (1,740 coins) were dated 1796.Estimated Surviving Population for the Issue: 2,100 to 6,500 coins in all grades, for the entire 1795-dated issue. The estimate population for all three die marriages of the Plain Edge, Punctuated Date variety is 245 to 675 coins in all grades.Estimated Surviving Population for the Die Variety: Rarity-3: 200 to 600 coins in all grades.Strike: In keeping with the Manley 2.0 die state, this coin is softly struck in the centers. There is little delineation between the hair curls at the top of Libertys head and behind the ear, and on the reverse the word CENT is illegible with only the letter C faintly discernible with the aid of a loupe. The right ribbon bow and the adjacent leaves in the wreath are soft, as is the denominator 200 in the denomination. There is no border denticulation on the reverse from 5 to 8 oclock, but most of the wreath is bold and the legend UNITED STATES OF AMERICA is clear. Peripheral detail on the obverse is sharper, although we do note a touch of softness to the letters ER in LIBERTY and at the upper right border.Surfaces: This is a very well preserved coin for the assigned grade with no sizable or otherwise individually mentionable handling marks. The softly struck areas in the centers and at the upper obverse and lower reverse borders retain considerable roughness from the original planchet texture. The texture is satiny and there are tinges of pale reddish-rose on the dominant medium brown patina. A few swirls of bolder flint gray are evident at the upper left obverse border and scattered about the reverse periphery, some of which are associated with light carbon. Apart from the aforementioned planchet texture, the appearance of both sides is smooth, and the eye appeal is strong for the grade.Commentary: Cohen-4 is the most readily obtainable die marriage of the Plain Edge, Punctuated Date <em>Guide Book</em> variety, although we caution bidders that the vast majority of examples are well worn and grade no finer than VF. Breen was aware of only half a dozen Mint State survivors from these dies, and this is only the second that we have offered during the 21st century. Ideal for inclusion in an advanced type set or advanced early copper cabinet. From the ESM Collection. Earlier ex Jay Parrino (The Mint); Superiors Thomas M. Chalkley Collection sale, January 1990, lot 20; Martin Paul; Heritages St. Louis Auction, May 1990, lot 19; Martin Paul; Superiors October 7-9, 1990 Sale, lot 14; Dr. Wallace Lee; Superiors sale of the Dr. Wallace Lee Collection of Half Cents & Large Cents, May 2003 Pre-Long Beach Elite Coin Auction, lot 105.