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There’s an exciting penny error people are finding on 2023 pennies, and they’re worth a lot of money!
These valuable VDBV penny errors involve the appearance of an extra letter “V” on the 2023 penny.
A lot of people are talking about these coins. They want to know what to look for and how much these rare 2023 pennies are worth.
Here’s everything you want to know about the 2023 error penny…
The Controversy Over 2023 VDBV Pennies
Many collectors are aware of the VDB letters on pennies. Those three letters are the initials of Lincoln penny designer Victor David Brenner — whose initials VDB have appeared on the penny for most years since 1909.
The VDB initials were originally located on the reverse (“tails side”) for a few weeks in 1909, before public rebuke of the initials led to their removal early on. This is why 1909 VDB pennies are so valuable — because relatively few were struck.
Beginning in late 1909 through 1917, Lincoln pennies didn’t carry the VDB initials. They returned in 1918, moving to the obverse (“heads side”) under Abraham Lincoln’s shoulder. That is where VDB has appeared ever since.
So far as collectors knew, there had been no major varieties or errors involving those VDB initials under Lincoln’s shoulder all these years.
That is until 2023, when buzz around the 2023 pennies with the extra V started brewing in the early months of the year.
There were plenty of skeptics. Some thought it was simply post-mint damage of some kind, or maybe an impression of an extra V caused by someone outside of the United States Mint with too much time on their hands.
Confirming The 2023 Extra V Penny Error Is Real
After many experts looked at various examples of the 2023 Extra V penny, and more of these coins began showing up from mint-original rolls of 2023 pennies, the evidence was conclusive — it was, indeed, a mint variety. But which kind?
At the time of this writing, there are still more questions and theories than answers as to why there’s an extra V on Lincoln’s shoulder. However, what is known is the extra V is incuse — it goes into the surface of the coin — similar to the VDB initials that are supposed to be on the coin.
It seems there are at least two kinds of 2023 Extra V pennies:
- One that is widely known as the 2023 Extra V penny (or 2023 VDBV penny)
- Another known as the 2023 Far V penny — which shows the extra V much farther to the right of VDB than seen on the other 2023 VDBV pennies.
Perhaps there will eventually be a variety name for this coin — such as Close V or Near V — though such terminology has not been widely used in the hobby for the time being.
Why Is There An Extra V On Some 2023 Pennies?
Nobody in the numismatic community seems to know at this point.
Some theories suggest the extra V was intentionally placed on at least one of the working dies.
However, it could have also appeared due to a technical glitch, which can crop up with the computer-aided design process in creating hubs and dies these days.
Where Is The Extra V On The 2023 Penny Error?
Take a look at your 2023 penny with a coin magnifier and check under Lincoln’s shoulder. You should see a tiny set of letters spelling out VDB.
Once you locate these letters, and ensure that they’re facing upright, look to the right.
Do you see an extra letter V?
It should be offset by itself along the base of Lincoln’s shoulder — with the V looking similar in size and typeface as the V in VDB to the left.
If you see this little V by itself along the base of Lincoln’s shoulder, you likely have the 2023 VDBV penny (or 2023 Extra V error). I say “likely” because you’ll want to make sure you don’t have an altered 2023 penny with the extra V placed there by an unscrupulous individual trying to fake the error.
Now, you certainly don’t have to authenticate coins you are pulling from rolls that are known to have come directly from the U.S. Mint or other departments in the U.S. government. However, if you’re interested in buying 2023 Extra V error pennies for your own collection, you should only buy specimens that have been authenticated and graded — to ensure that you’re getting a real 2023 penny error and not one that has been faked or altered.
Finding 2023 Extra V Error Pennies In Circulation
Yes, you can find these valuable 2023 penny errors in circulation!
Many of the early findings of the 2023 VDBV and 2023 Far V penny have come from collectors looking through rolls of 2023 pennies.
If you went to the bank or coin dealer right now and bought an entire box of 2023 pennies, there’s no guarantee you would find even one of these rare 2023 Extra V pennies in there. Then again, you could strike it rich and find dozens.
That’s the thing about coin roll searching — the thrill of the hunt is what makes this method of looking for coins so exciting and, sometimes, quite profitable.
2023 Extra V Penny Value
I can tell you one thing: the 2023 Extra V penny is worth looking for!
Values for the 2023 VDBV pennies range between $30 and $50 for a typical uncirculated specimen.
However, some of the most valuable 2023 Extra V pennies have sold for much more than that.
In the months following the discovery of this penny error, some examples of the coin have sold for more than $1,000!
I’m the Coin Editor here at TheFunTimesGuide. My love for coins began when I was 11 years old. I primarily collect and study U.S. coins produced during the 20th century. I’m a member of the American Numismatic Association (ANA) and the Numismatic Literary Guild (NLG) and have won multiple awards from the NLG for my work as a coin journalist. I’m also the editor at the Florida United Numismatists Club (FUN Topics magazine), and author of Images of America: The United States Mint in Philadelphia (a book that explores the colorful history of the Philadelphia Mint). I’ve contributed hundreds of articles for various coin publications including COINage, The Numismatist, Numismatic News, Coin Dealer Newsletter, Coin Values, and CoinWeek. I’ve authored nearly 1,000 articles here at The Fun Times Guide to Coins (many of them with over 50K shares), and I welcome your coin questions in the comments below!