BD-2, Rarity-4. There are two distinct varieties known for this issue. The first, with thirteen stars on the reverse, is extremely rare. The more common variety has fourteen reverse stars and it is estimated that around 150-200 are known. Early quarter eagles didn't circulate with much regularity, so the 1804 is most often seen in About Uncirculated and the lower Mint State grades. It is extremely hard to find a problem-free piece in a "collector grade" and that's why this 1804 is a special coin. It is evenly worn with lovely rich natural green-gold color on the obverse and reverse. The obverse is well-defined and has the sharpness of a "45'; the reverse is weakly detailed at the border and there is a noticeable old scratch from the rim through the E in UNITED and into the right wing. The overall eye appeal of this coin is really quite exceptional and if you have been looking for a comparably affordable type coin to represent the Capped Bust Right quarter eagle issue, this piece is perfect.
BD-7, R-4. Small 8 over Large 8 (also known as the Normal/Large 8 variety). From the standpoint of varieties, the 1804 half eagle contains some of the most visually impressive varieties in the entire early gold series. One of my favorites is the 1804 Small 8 over Large 8 which has among the most dramatic repunchings seen on any American coin ever produced. This variety is moderately scarce with an estimated 100-150 known, mostly in lower grades. This very lustrous example has attractive light yellowish-gold color with slightly deeper greenish hues at the obverse border. From the standpoint of wear (or lack of it) and "meat," this piece grades at least AU58 but it has been net graded down to an AU55 by PCGS due to a small scrape on the obverse from the cap up through the space between IB in LIBERTY. The reverse of this coin is especially choice and it grades at least MS61 on its own accord. Heritage 8/11: 7515, also graded AU55 by PCGS and approved by CAC, realized $12,650. This is one of six examples of this variety to have been approved by CAC in AU55 with nine better.