Norman Kings

(see also “Saxon” section for earlier English Hammered coins)

 

William The Conqueror (AD 1066 - 1087).  Norman King Read about William I

 

 

WMH-7711:  William 1st Hammered Silver Norman Penny.  B.M.C. 1, Profile left, cross fleury issue of 1066-68.  +BRIHTNAR ON PIN – Britmar of Wallingford (Oxford).  Spink 1250.  A rare Norman mint.  Only two other examples recorded on the EMC / SCBI database, making this the third and one of those is unconfirmed.  This is a better coin than the other confirmed example.  Ex Seaby (sold for £275 in 1979), ex Royal Berkshire Collection – see tickets.  Nicely toned, good VF.  A superb coin going all the way back to the actual Norman invasion – Harold’s arrow to the eye, the Bayous Tapestry etc.  £2,450

 

WMH-7949:  William 1st Norman Kings Hammered Silver Penny.  B.M.C. II, Bonnet type issue of 1068-70.  1.28g.  Obverse: +PILLEMV REX A, reverse: +BRAND ON PALLIG – Brand of Wallingford (Oxford).  Spink 1251.  A rarer type and a rare Norman mint.  Only three different moneyers recorded on the EMC / SCBI database for BMC II / Wallingford, with Svertingr being the most frequent moneyer by far.  VF with attractive steel-grey toning.  See here and here for images of the old tickets.  With its provenance, this is an impressive coin, being just what the market is searching high and low for these days.  £1,750

Provenance:

Ex Baldwins (sold for £55)

Ex J.D.A. Thompson collection

Purchased from Spink's dispersal of the J.D.A. Thompson collection in 1972

Remaining in the same collection from 1972 for the last 52 years.

 

WMH-7946:  William 1st Norman Hammered Silver Penny.  Canopy type, 1070-72 - B.M.C. III: +BRITHMAER ON PIIL – Beorhtmaer of Wallingford (Oxford).  Spink 1252.  A rare Norman mint (much rarer for Norman compared to Saxon) and a rarer early type for William 1st.  £1,175

 

WMH-7350:  William 1st Norman Kings Hammered Silver *Rarer Mint* Penny.  B.M.C. V, Two Stars type: +PVLFPINE ON PERIC – Wulfwine of Warwick.  A rare Norman mint with the very commonest of all the Warwick mint Norman coins starting at £1,250 in Spink 2022.  This is clearly not a common type coin.  Only one example recorded on the EMC / SCBI database, making this the second.  £1,750

 

WMH-7823:  Norman Kings William 1st Official Dies Right Facing Bust Penny.  B.M.C. VII, c.1080-83, Profile / Cross & Trefoils issue, Spink 1256.  +EDPI [ON LIIN] - Eadwi of London.  Spink in their 2023, #1256 listing state: "lead die struck examples exist from the Thames".  The current theory is that because these were struck from official dies, these were paid for passes or customs cheques allowing travellers passage into central London.  Lead would not have survived 1,000 years unless it was preserved for all of that time in the anaerobic conditions of the River Thames.  I've had a couple of these in my time - one of which accompanied by a very detailed Jon Mann ticket (Jon being one of our foremost numismatic researches), but I think this one edges even that example by grade.  Much rarer than the silver counterparts, probably more interesting in terms of the history, and yet a fraction of the price.  £595

 

WMH-7262:  William 1st Hammered Silver Norman Penny – Rare Mint.  B.M.C. VIII – PAXS type, 1083-86.  Rare Bristol mint.  This is the final issue under William 1st with some current debate as to whether this issue overlaps into the reign of William II.  +BRIHTPORD ON BRI.  Toned and graded VF on the modern ticket.  Spink 1257, North 850.  Ex Seaby.  Old tickets here.  Very rare.  £1,095

 

 

 

William “Rufus” II (AD 1087 - 1100).  Norman King Read about William II

 

 

WMH-7689:  William “Rufus” II Norman Hammered Silver Penny.  Cross in quatrefoil issue (B.M.C. II) of 1089–92 only.  COLBERN ON PALI – Kolbjern of Wallingford.  Only x4 recorded examples on the EMC / SCBI database.  This coin from the same dies as SCBI Ashmolean 186, BMC 160 and Locket 1017, which I think must be a first for a coin with so few recorded examples!  1.39 grams / 9h.  Mis-struck on the obverse, as is at least one of the four EMC / SCBI coins.  Good provenance (see tickets) – ex A. Byde collection, ex C.J. Martin (1981), ex Royal Berkshire collection.  £1,850

 

WMH-7437:  William II NORMAN Hammered Silver Cross Pattee & Fleury Penny.  B.M.C. IV, 1095-98: +AEG(ELRIC ON) LNDI – Aegelric of London.  Spink 1261.  There are only x5 recorded examples of London mint B.M.C IV coins on the EMC database which is entirely to be expected bearing in mind the rarity of this type.  Of all William II coins recorded, including fragments, B.M.C IV and B.M.C V are the rarest with only 9% of the population each.  B.M.C I, which Spink rate the rarest, accounts for 19% of the population.  If you go back to 1919, so disregarding all finds from the previous 100 years, B.M.C IV was 10%, B.M.C V was 8% and B.M.C I was 23%. The numbers do not lie.  A rare coin.  £1,895

 

WMH-7396:  William II “Rufus” Hammered Silver Norman Penny.  Cross fleury and piles issue (B.M.C. V) of 1098 – 1100 only.  +ASCIL.ON.[L]I[N]CO.  Lincoln mint.  Spink 1262.  Extra image here.  This final issue is the rarest of all five William II types, being only 9% of all recorded coins, including fragments and mules, for EMC + SCBI.  The EMC alone has type V at 8% with the nest rarest, type IV, at 10%.  Further, the money and type combination is also rare.  £1,945

 

 

 

Henry I (AD 1100 - 1135).  Norman King Read about Henry I

 

Upon Henry’s death at Rouen in 1135, Stephen, perhaps unexpectedly, was pronounced king and immediately seized the royal treasury at Winchester.  William of Malmesbury stated it contained £100,000 of “exquisitissimi denarii” – extremely carefully chosen pence (although Latin scholars will be aware that denarii does not equate to pence), which was a comment on the dreadfully low standard of Henry 1st coinage.

 

Pennies

 

WMH-7666:  Henry 1st Hammered Silver Norman PAXS Penny.  A desirable early issue, being B.M.C. III – circa 1103 only.  +IIHGMII[ND O[N C]AN – Agmundr of Canterbury.  A very rare type / mint combination, there being only two B.M.C.iii Canterbury pennies listed on the world famous EMC / SCBI database, this coin being one of them (EMC 2012.0295), the other being a totally different moneyer.  In effect, a unique coin.  The method pf photography employed greatly enhances any flaws etc.  In this case, the flan cracks look off-putting.  I would refer you to the images on the EMC / SCBI database which literally don’t show them at all.  They are not visible to the naked eye.  Found Holme-next-the-Sea, Norfolk, 2012, bought by Tim Owen, bought by the Causeway Collection.  A rare coin indeed.  £1,875

 

WMH-7438:  Henry 1st NORMAN Hammered Silver PAXS Penny.  B.M.C. III, 1103 only: +S(PROT)ONSIIDPIR – Sprot of Southwark.  Spink 1264.  This is a unique coin – a new type for the moneyer with Sprot only recorded as money in Southwark under William II and Henry 1st types I and II.  There are 488 results for all Henry 1st types minted at Southwark but only x12 are Henry 1st type III Southwark so this coin alone clearly shows Sprot continued his trade beyond 1102 and into 1103.  Sold with an old auction information slip.  An exceptionally rare coin.  £2,225

 

WMH-7864:  Henry 1st Hammered Silver Norman Penny.  B.M.C. VII, 1111 only: +EDPINE ON CATN – Edwine of Canterbury.  Spink 1268.  Only one other example (x2 entries but actually the same coin, and a particularly grim example at that!) recorded on the EMC and SCBI database.  Type 7 coins were actually struck after type 9 coins but were still very much within the period where the mint was required to officially test cut all coins (this practise commenced 1105).  A very rare coin.  £545

 

WMH-5672:  Henry 1st Hammered Silver Norman Penny.  B.M.C. IX, cross in quatrefoil type, 1109 only.  Mint and moneyer:  DEREMAN of London.  Official test cut done before the coin left the mint - The reign of Henry 1st, though stable and successful in many ways, coincided with a period of monetary crisis, to the point where the general public had genuine concerns over the quality of the coinage leaving the mint.  As a result of this, some of the public physically started to test the coinage themselves which obviously hindered the acceptance of what was genuine coinage even further.  In a bold and unprecedented move, the government ordered ALL coinage to be mutilated at issue, thereby forcing the acceptance of damaged coins.  This practice was ordered halfway through BMC 6 and it continued until BMC 14.  It took the form of an edge incision or “snick”, as seen in this coin.  For those that are interested, the government finally sought to put this problem to bed in 1124 by ordering a “purge of moneyers” throughout England!  From this we get that the coinage of Henry 1st was not great in quality (even type 15 coins, post purge, are generally poor) and that all coins from BMC 7-14 will have edge snicks.  Rare coin.  £565

 

WMH-7885:  Henry 1st Hammered Silver Norman Penny.  Facing bust / cross fleury type: B.M.C. X, circa 1117 only.  +BRAND ON CICES - rarer Chichester mint town.  Only x3 recorded Chichester type 10 pennies recorded on the EMC database and only x2 of those are BRAND.  There were only three moneyers working from this mint under Henry 1st.  Chichester is a rare mint for Norman coinage - interestingly the entire city, complete with minster, burnt down in 1114, which is somewhat at odds with the coinage production - a trial run in 1105 with nothing until the type 8 coinage in 1113 where production was continuous through the types until 14 (c.1123).  To further muddy the waters, type 8 postdates type 9!  Official test cut at 3 o'clock, as they all should have, and beautifully toned.  Spink 1271.  See old tickets here: ex Royal Berkshire collection, purchased from Mike Vosper in 1999.  A remarkable, attractive ad very rare coin.  £995

 

WMH-7440:  Henry 1st NORMAN Hammered Silver FACING BUST / CROSS FLEURY Penny.  B.M.C. X, 1117 only: +ALFRED ON PEVE – Alfred of Pevensey.  Spink 1271.  Where to start with this one!  It is a stray coin from the famous Beauvais Hoard, sold by a French dealer to Peter Mitchell of Baldwins in 1987 and therefore not listed in the sale of that hoard in the same year.  Sold privately to Dr William Conte late 1988.  We talk in terms of hundreds, perhaps even thousands of coins for entire reigns being recorded at specific mints.  For this mint, Pevensey (literally built on the site of a Roman fortification on the spot where William the Conqueror happened to land in 1066, on route to an appointment he had at Hastings), this is one of only four recorded examples.  Just to be clear, there are only four Pevensey coins for all of the Henry 1st coinage (only a type IX and this type X shown on EMC) and there are only thirteen Pevensey mint coins recorded on EMC for every single monarch, ever.  Old tickets here.  A once in a lifetime coin.  £6,750

 

WMH-7829:  Henry 1st NORMAN Hammered Silver DOUBLE INSCRIPTION Penny.  B.M.C. XI, 1116 only: +ALDPINE / ON SEFTE – Aldwine of Shaftsbury.  Spink 1272.  Only fourteen Shaftsbury coins of all Henry 1st types recorded on the EMC database with no examples of Double Inscription coins recorded.  Further, this coin is the best grade example of all Shaftsbury mint coins, all types, on EMC.  Ex Mike Vosper (his ticket) who sold this coin to the famous Causeway Collection in 2018.  A stunning coin – there will be no better.  Unambiguously Choice.  £5,995 RESERVED (M.S.10-10-23 Lay-Away)

 

WMH-7442:  Henry 1st NORMAN Hammered Silver DOUBLE INSCRIPTION Penny.  B.M.C. XI, 1116 only: +ALDRED O / N LVNDEAelfred of London.  Spink 1272.  The wavy flan made this a challenging coin to photograph.  Only fourteen London Double Inscription coins recorded on the EMC database with NO examples of this moneyer.  A rare type and a rarer still moneyer.  £1,350

 

WMH-7703:  Henry 1st Hammered Silver NORMAN Penny.  Small profile / cross & annulets type, B.M.C. XII, circa 1119 only.  Spink 1273.  Mint and moneyer uncertain – if it wasn’t for the questionable slabbing on this coin, I suspect something could be gleaned.  Ex B. Tregen collection, ex Mike Vosper (that ticket originally lost but now found and thus sold with the coin).  Hard to photograph but actually good central detail with peripheral weakness in the strike.  I’m told it’s easy to remove the plastic slab.  £885

 

WMH-8003:  Henry 1st Hammered Norman Silver Penny.  Star in Lozenge, B.M.C. XIII type, circa 1121 only.  Crowned bust left, holding sceptre; +NORTHMAN:ON[  ]TF.  Northman moneyer minting at Thetford in East Anglia.  Spink 1274.  There are only ten examples of B.M.C 13 recorded for Thetford, whish is not a lot.  Further, there is only a single example of this exceptionally rare moneyer listed on the EMC database: EMC/SCBI NUMBER:2008.0309.  This coin is that listed example, thus making this coin unique.  Found 2006 in Buckinghamshire.  A very rare coin indeed.  £1,350

 

WMH-7444:  Henry 1st NORMAN Hammered Silver STAR IN LOZENGE Penny.  B.M.C. XIII, 1121 only: +O(TER) ON BERDESTA – Otarr of Barnstaple.  Spink 1274.  A rare mint for monarch with only seven Barnstaple coins of all Henry 1st types recorded on the EMC database with only two examples of Star in Lozenge coins recorded, both of which were found in a Lincolnshire hoard a long time ago so I doubt they are in public ownership.  £1,950

 

WMH-7719:  Henry 1st Norman Kings Hammered Silver CHOICE Penny.  Pellets in Quatrefoil type, B.M.C. XIV, dating to AD 1123 only.  Spink 1275, North 870.  +ALFPINE(.ON.L)VN – Aelfwine out of the London mint.  One of the rarer moneyers for type, there being only x3 recorded examples (the excellent EMC / SCBI database), one confirmed (a very good coin but not a patch on this one), one with only a partial moneyer reading but it will be Aelfwine (a lovely coin but again, not as good as this example) and a third with no image so likely to be from an early Lincoln hoard as that was the find spot.  That hoard contained several London type 14 pennies (the bulk being Sigegar as moneyer) but only a single Aelfwine.  A further point of interest with this coin is the unusual orientation of the reverse quatrefoil – it is most unusual to have one of the Lis below the initial mark; in nearly every other recorded example, it’s the point of the quatrefoil pointing to the i.m.  To find any presentable type 14 or 15 coin is hard (type 15 coins are more prevalent and remember, type 14 was only a single year issue) – this is nothing to do with grade, rather that they put little effort into both die cutting and the actual end product because they were churning these issues out at pace, seemingly against the clock.  This coin is simply stunning in every aspect.  It’s attractively toned, full of flan, from excellent dies and particularly well executed for type.  I draw readers attention the type 14 Spink use as their plate coin (2023).  It has the usual reverse quatrefoil orientation but importantly, it’s clearly an inferior coin when compared to this one and although it’s a lovely coin, that’s the very best example Spink could find with their huge resources and contacts.  Only one word sums up this coin – choice.  £2,785

 

WMH-7865:  Henry 1st Hammered Silver Norman Penny.  B.M.C. XIV, 1123 only: +ESGAR ON GLOCESE – Esgar of Gloucester.  Spink 1275.  No examples recorded on the EMC and SCBI database, although the accompanying literature states two other coins known: one in the Gloucester Museum and the other a cut half out of the 1987 Beauvais Coin Hoard - the former will never be in public hands; the latter's whereabouts are unknown.  Sold with old tickets - the detailed ticket looks to be 1980's with the Baldwin ticket (with Baldwin coin envelope) more recent.  It is interesting to note that Baldwin's rate this coin as RRR.  An exceptionally rare coin.  £995

 

 

Round Halfpennies

 

WMH-7048:  Henry 1st Hammered Silver Norman Round Halfpenny.  Obverse: facing uncrowned head of Henry 1st, hair made up of seven fleur-like ringlets, inner and outer beaded circles with legend surrounding: +hENRIC REX, initial mark cross with orbed base.  Reverse: +AILPINE ON PI – Ailwine (moneyer) of Winchester, central cross potent with groups of pellets in angles.  Dark uneven tone with light porosity, fine and clear with distinctive style of head and fully readable, extremely rare denomination and the only example known of this moneyer, although this moneyer is recorded as issuing pence at Winchester.  Spink 1277, North 872.

 

Provenance:

Found near Marlborough, Wiltshire, October 2001 (see The Searcher magazine, March 2002, pp.41-3, this coin).

Ex Dix Noonan and Webb, 19th June 2002, lot 135.

Ex Spink Coin Auction 183, 26th September 2006, lot 19.

Ex Spink Coin Auction, 26th September 2018, lot 370.

 

The round Halfpenny denomination of King Henry 1st initially came to light only 71 years ago, when respected professional numismatist Peter Seaby exhibited a coin of Winchester by the moneyer Godwine A at the British Numismatic Society on 1 March 1950 (North pl.16, 36 and Spink Standard Catalogue, p.135, coin now in the Fitzwilliam Museum). It took until 1989 for four more halfpence to emerge: SandwichÆthelbold (reverse struck from a type IX Penny die - now in Fitzwilliam Museum), and HerefordAilred (now in British Museum), both found together in spoil from Thames Exchange; Norwich(?),Thot, found in Norfolk (now in Fitzwilliam Museum); and York, Othbeorn, found near Newbury.  Other mints and moneyers discovered since include examples of Oxford, ÆgelnothWallingford, Osulf; and Wilton, Ailward (all in Fitzwilliam Museum); another Sandwich, Æthelbold, of regular type, found at Little Mongeham, Kent, September 1992; Winchester, Wimund, ex Baldwin Auction 7, 2nd May 1996, lot 517 and now also in the Fitzwilliam Museum; Lincoln, uncertain moneyer (only half a coin), found Newark 2004 and more recently another LincolnAslakr, an unrecorded moneyer for type (obviously, seeing as how it’s the only extant Lincoln round halfpenny!) being probably the best known example of all 22 known coins, with provenance as “found near Lincoln 2018”; Norwich, Thorstein, found Sutton Bridge 2009 (currently for sale in the US at $15,000); York, Forni, found north east Lincolnshire 2009; London, ---DRED, a fragmentary coin found Kent 2013; London, Thorreaed, found Tilbury 2014; Canterbury, Winedaeg, found Wherwell - pierced in three places; as well as three uncertain pieces.  To summarise there are approximately twenty two examples recorded with around half either in museums or fragmentary.  £7,950

 

 

 

Stephen (AD 1135 - 1154).  Norman King Read about Stephen

 

The fabled TRANSITIONAL CORONATION ISSUE, bridging the coinage of Henry 1st and Stephen:

 

WMH-7912:  Extremely Rare Stephen Hammered Silver Penny Utilising an Altered Henry 1st Die. Termed the "Transitional Coronation Issue", struck with an altered Henry 1st obverse die (STEFANVS REX over HENRIC) - a substantive class XV penny of Henry 1st Watford (B.M.C. 1) type, struck December 1136.  [LIEF]RED : ON : LVND.  Issued under the direction of the Abbot of Reading, Hugh Miens.  Only one London moneyer allowed, according to the literature.  This reading of Stephen's regnal name (STEFANVS as opposed to the ubiquitous STIEFNE) was completely unknown prior to the discovery of this issue.  Only six extant examples known, including this one.  Old tickets here and a marvellous numismatic information sheet here.  As you might expect, there is a rather impressive provenance accompanying this coin: 

Ex Spink

Ex Lord Stewartby 2016

Ex Baldwins 1972

Ex F.A. Walters 1932

Reportedly found in the River Witham, Lincs. pre 1875

One of the most significant and interesting Norman coins you're likely to see for sale on the open market.  £2,950 RESERVED (M.S.20-11-23 Lay-Away)

 

 

Angevin Party

 

WMH-7613:  Norman ANGEVIN PARTY Hammered Silver Halfpenny – Henry of Anjou.  **A coin of major historical significance**  Struck under the Empress Matilda’s Angevin Party circa 1142-47 using an exceptionally well crafted pair of dies: the obverse has Henry of Anjou facing right; crowned, whilst the reverse is based on the Henry 1st final type 15 Quadrilateral on Cross Fleury type although the Cross Fleury is more a Cross Pellet.  Obverse: HEN[RICVS], reverse: +RAO[---ON---]IGE.  This reverse is the reading taken directly from the EMC / SCBI entry (EMC 2019.0360) – see here.  I would suggest that the mint is, in fact, Gloucester – Mack 247 is a type 3 example of this coin with a mint signature GLOE and GLO could possibly be this reading.  Recorded mints for Henry of Anjou, this type, are Hereford, Gloucester, “CRST” and “CAO[--]”.  I’m at a loss as to where EMC derives Wallingford from, other than Wallingford was a beleagured garrison which sent for Henry, from his home in France, in 1153, a date way in advance of this coin.  If the reader is interested, all recorded Angevin mints are: Bristol, Gloucester, Sherbourne(?), Hereford, Malmesbury, and “Uncertain” - Cirencester?  The moneyer on this coin (given by EMC as RADVLF, RAVLF or RAVL) is a previously unrecorded moneyer; Gloucester Henry of Anjou was only ROBERT prior to this coin.  Mack 248-53, Spink 1329, North 940/2.  Empress Matilda’s eldest son, Henry of Anjou, Lived in France.  He came to England in 1147, aged 14, and 1149.  The former was to do battle at Pevensey (he attacked Cricklade & Bourton but both were abject failures and to make a bad day at the office worse, his men deserted him), the latter was to be knighted by his great uncle, David 1st of Scotland, at Carlisle.  In between times, he was fully occupied in fighting a war against Louis VII, briefly taking time out to marry Eleanor of Aquitaine, the former wife of Louis VII.  Interesting times.  The chronology of coinage is as follows: Empress Matilda coinage in hr name, 1139-42.  Henry of Anjou very much replaced his mother on coinage from 1142 with the profile types lasting until the death of Earl Robert in 1147, after which Henry of Anjou adopted a front facing style to match the Stephen regular type 2 coinage (voided cross & stars, 1145-50).  Post 1147, the fortunes of the Angevin Party were at a low ebb and very little, if any, coinage was issued.  A point of interest on this coin is the unusual placement of the regnal name, starting about 10 o’clock.  Cut coins were very much done so at the mint, not in the field, obviously to generate small change where no round fractional coins existed.  This was the case right through until the practise all but ceased under Edward 1st.  It is extremely interesting to note that this cut half has virtually 100% of the bust of Henry of Anjou remaining.  Once the civil war was over and Henry II was enthroned (Henry II was Henry of Anjou), the mint had little consideration as to whether the king’s head was or was not on a cut half – indeed it is thought that of the miniscule quantity of coinage put aside for “cutting” at the mint post civil war, BOTH sides of individual whole coins were released into circulation as halfpence.  Prior to this, it was definitely NOT the case – only carefully selected coins, with Henry’s portrait favouring one side of the coin, were chosen and when cut, the side without the portrait was immediately put back in the melting pot.  This was to ensure that all coinage, even smaller denominations held by peasants, bore the rightful monarch’s portrait.  It was basically the forerunner to propaganda and advertising.  When you consider this, these cut halves represent a miniscule fraction of all struck coinage and then whatever that miniscule percentage was, it was immediately halved in size by only using one half of every cut coin.  An excessively rare and extraordinarily high grade example.  If this were a full coin, in this grade, it would be somewhat over £10,000; probably more as it’s an unrecorded moneyer.  It is common practice in Scandinavia to charge a straight 50% of the value of a full coin on all cut half coins, even English coins.  Don’t miss out on this one as there will be no repeat.  £3,375 RESERVED (M.S.28-8-23)

 

 

Irregular Local Dies Variant

 

WMH-7479:  Stephen Norman Hammered Silver Halfpenny.  Unusual Norman Hammered Silver Cut Halfpenny of Stephen’s B.M.C.1, "Watford" type, 1136-45, Spink 1278.  An irregular coin struck using Local Dies with part ornamental / part retrograde / possibly meaningless legends.  To the best of my ability the legends are: [...]ENSI+EFR+E[...] and [...]ENR or E? ON G[...].  Taken at face value, the reverse could indicate ALFWINE (blundered) of Gloucester?  Richard Mooney, a numismatist I hold in high esteem for his knowledge and understanding of not just Norman coinage but virtually all hammered coinage, has kindly provided the following:  The best I can think of is that the "G" on the reverse might be the beginning of the Gloucester mint signature.  If this is actually true, a reasonable moneyer could be Alfwine, but then the spelling is blundered, [...]WENE ON G[...]. I saw no names ending  ENE in Martin Allen's 2012 paper on Norman moneyers of type 1 Stephen.”  Recorded on the EMC database as EMC 2023.0066 although as you’ll see if you look this coin up, Martin Allen is also struggling.  Unique?  Further research required – something to definitely get your numismatic teeth into!  £545

 

 

Rare Southern Variant

 

WMH-6956:  Unique Stephen Norman Penny – Tutbury Castle, family seat of Robert de Ferrers, second Earl of Derby.  Unique Tutbury mint coin.  Obverse: [STEPH]ANVSX, crude crowned bust right holding sceptre.  Reverse: WALCMI.[INVS] TVT, voided short cross with annulet in centre, martlets in angles, reminiscent of the Edward Confessor Saxon Sovereign / Eagles B.M.C.9 coin.  Struck in the summer of 1141 when Stephen was held in captivity, at a time when royal control had all but broken down and chaos (anarchy) prevailed,especially amongst the King’s supporters.  Spink 1298 var and Mack 175 var.  Listed as a Southern Variant in Spink and not an East Midland’s variant – Derby is in the East Midlands and Tutbury Castle is a short distance south east of Derby in East Staffordshire.  Mack (the definitive work on Stephen coinage) states that “…all known coins are from the same die pairing” with the reverse having the legend: +WALCHELINVS DERBI.  There were three coins and a cut half of this type found in Ashby-de-la-Zouch in 1788 and one other found in London at a similar although unspecified date.  The obverse and reverse of this coin are definitely not a die pair to the other 4 ½ extant “DERBI” examples.  This is a unique coin, from the hitherto unrecorded mint of Tutbury.  Walkelin, the moneyer at both Derby and Tutbury, was a family name of the de Ferrers and so it is likely that the family itself struck this coinage.  The dies were local, in their crudity and workmanship, and were cut by the local seal cutter (see BNJ, v, p.439 and Carlyon-Britton sale catalogue note under lot 1482).  There is obviously no research as to why the family changed the mint town on the coins from Derby to Tutbury (or vice versa) – Tutbury Castle was in the hands of the Earls of Derby throughout this period – as this is the first and only example of a Tutbury coin known.  There is only a single coin of this type listed on the E.M.C database, it being this exact same coin.  This coin made the news some 10 years ago when it was found as a “£10K coin find”, which is remarkable in itself but possibly more so that I can actually remember it making the news, even though I can’t remember what I did last week, never mind what happened ten years ago!  0.97g / 90 degree die rotation.  Ex DNW auction 2014 and ex another auction (see later entry here).  The coin is described as VF in that entry.  The coin has been professionally repaired at 6 o’clock to a remarkably high standard; only apparent under a loop, or the all-revealing camera / lighting setup that I employ for photography.  There is a Castle Rising Watford type Stephen penny doing the rounds of dealers at the moment for £4,000+.  It is not as clear on the legends, not as good a bust, is a rare mint but there are well into double figures of that mint known, and is a just Watford type.  I think that puts this coin into context rather nicely, especially as any discount you may have been awarded previously will be valid on this coin.  £8,950

 

WMH-7448:  Stephen NORMAN Hammered Silver SOUTHERN VARIANT Penny.  B.M.C. I var, c.1148: +SANSON ON ANT – Hanton of Southampton.  Spink 1295.  A rare Stephen penny struck, out of necessity for this was during the Civil War period, from local and irregular dies.  These Southern Variant Civil War coins, when they do turn up, are predictably grim.  This coin, however, is anything but grim.  As you’ll see from the ticket, Jon Mann, the esteemed researcher, rates this as not only being high quality silver as opposed to the usual billon material they used in this period, but one of the top five extant examples.  £1,650

 

 

Cross MolineWatford” issue (B.M.C. i) - a nationwide issue:

 

WMH-7672:  Stephen Norman Hammered Silver Portrait Penny.  Cross Moline or B.M.C. 1 type, 1136-45.  [+--- ON] NORPIC – Norwich (East Anglian) mint town.  Tentatively die matched to moneyer Adam.  Listed on the world famous EMC database and one of the very best grade examples of all recorded Cross Moline Norwich pennies.  £1,675 RESERVED (M.S.2-1-24 Lay-Away)

 

WMH-7253:  Stephen “Norman Kings” Hammered Silver **Rare Mint** Penny.  Thomas / Tomas of Bedford - [...]MAS ON BE[...].  0.97g, 4h, Spink 1278.  B.M.C. I. There are no Spink 1278 Bedford pennies for Stephen on the EMC / SCBI database.  Thomas / Tomas as moneyer, under Stephen, was Bedford and Wilton ONLY.  There was a type 7 (THOMAS of Bedford) penny sold in 1983 to Elmore Jones for £1,600 hammer.  There are also five B.M.C. type 7’s (the Elmore Jones example almost certainly being one of those five) and a single B.M.C. type 6 for Stephen pennies of Bedford on the EMC / SCBI database.  Stephen's Bedford coins are very rare indeed, with B.M.C.1 coins being excessively rare, and possibly unique wrt this coin.  Ex Spink and with their extremely detailed information document sold with this coin.  An extremely rare coin indeed.  £1,795

 

WMH-7353:  Stephen Norman Kings Hammered Silver *Rarer Mint* Penny.  B.M.C. I, Cross MolineWatford” type: +[S]AMAR.[ON.]LEI – Samar of Leicester.  Toned.  A rare coin.  £1,375

 

WMH-7364:  Stephen Norman Kings Hammered Silver *Rarer Mint* Penny.  B.M.C. I, Cross MolineWatford” type: [+EVER]ARD [O]N PAR – Everard of Warwick.  Spink 1278.  Dark toning, full flan, well centred, strong portrait – a very rare coin, and for once Spink agree as they rate Warwick Norman pennies at £1,250, and that’s for the commonest type, which this coin is not.  £1,375

 

WMH-7939:  Stephen Norman Hammered Silver Rarer Mint Penny.  Cross Moline or B.M.C. 1 type, 1136-45.  [+S]APINE.ON.HAST – Hastings mint town.  Very few recorded examples, especially complete coins and in this grade, recorded.  The apparent crack at 1 or 2 o'clock on the reverse actually isn't a crack at all, rather a planchet flaw which was there prior to the strike.  Its corresponding obverse location is at 4 o'clock.  Ex Bispham collection (an acknowledged expert in late Norman, early medieval coinage), ex Baldwins - see old tickets here.  It is perhaps full circle in that at the Battle of Hastings the Normans took control of England and then this penny, minted at Hastings, witnessed the end of the Normans period upon Stephen's death.  £995 RESERVED (M.He.21-12-23)

 

 

 

Voided Cross & Stars issue (B.M.C. ii) - an East of England issue only:

 

WMH-7899:  Stephen Norman Hammered Silver Penny.  Voided cross and stars type, B.M.C. 2.  1145-50.  +RODBERT:ON:RIS - Castle Rising mint in North Norfolk, very close to the famous Snettisham site where all those fabulous Celtic gold torques (not to mention hoards of Celtic coins) came from.  Whilst the site at Snettisham is underwhelming, I strongly recommend a visit to Castle Rising.  There's not much there but the hairs on the back of your neck most certainly go up, even when you're driving past on the bypass.  Castle Rising is mentioned in the Doomsday Book.  It was later granted to William de Albini, whose son built a castle there.  Stephen was the only monarch to mint coins at Castle Rising, issuing BMC II, VI and VII pennies and cut halves.  Castle Rising BMC II coins account for only x5 of the x19 recorded examples (only x1 BMC II is a full coin and this coin is superior to that recorded full example) with BMC VI having x10 recorded and BMC VII just x4.  This Stephen type, together with BMC VI, were only issued in the Eastern part of England which was under Royal control.  BMC VII was a nationwide issue.  Spink 1280, North 878, Mack 56, SCBI (East Anglia) 1459.   Provenance: DNW 2020, Sovereign Rarities (sold for £5,750), St George Collection.  See tickets here.  Inconsequential surface stress mark to the reverse.  Richly toned, a bold portrait, good legends, an extremely rare mint town.  Good VF.  You will not find a better example of this extremely rare, iconic coin.  Choice by anyone's definition.  £5,995

 

 

 

Cross & Piles issue (B.M.C. vi) - an East of England issue only:

 

WMH-7446:  Stephen NORMAN Hammered Silver CROSS & PILES Penny.  B.M.C. VI, 1150-54: (+)GERFREI ON (TEF) – Geffrei of Thetford.  Spink 1281.  There are only six recorded examples of Thetford mint B.M.C VI coins on the EMC database with only two for this moneyer, one of which is a cut half of questionable attribution.  Sold with a variety of old tickets etc - ex W.J. Lawson collection (sold by Spink Aus in 1989).  Toned, virtually VF and just a lovely coin.  £1,750

 

WMH-7793:  Stephen Hammered Silver Norman Halfpenny.  Cross & Piles: B.M.C. VI, circa 1050-54.  Norwich mint - only issued in the Eastern part of England which was under Royal control.  Obverse crowned bust left, +S[TIEFN]E RE; reverse: [+STAN]hIL: ON NO[R].  0.79g.  Spink 1281.  Toned, rarer type, rarer mint but the main highlight is the virtually full portrait.  B.M.C. VI is one of the rarest of the standard Stephen issues – Spink 2023 rate it as £1,100 in VF.  This coin is at least VF for issue, if not slightly better.  The Scandinavians charge a standard, flat 50% of the price of a full coin for a cut half.  It’s unusual to get both mint & moneyer from halfpennies (without die linking) but it is incredibly rare to get this much detail in terms of the king’s portrait on a cut half.  These coins were officially cut at the mint immediately after striking in order to integrate small change into circulation at a time when there were no round halfpennies.  The value of the coinage, and therefore the purchasing power, was entirely in the silver content so this cut half should have literally been worth half a penny.  At 0.79 grams, it is virtually impossible that the other half of this coin was the same weight.  I’d postulate that this coin was cut very generously at the mint with the other half coin back into the melting pot to make planchets to be used for later coinage.  Sold with an old ticket stating that the coin was found in the Southampton area.  A very rare find indeed.  £625

 

WMH-7872:  Norman Civil War Stephen Hammered Silver UNRECORDED Penny.  Cross & Piles: B.M.C. VI, circa 1050-54.  London mint - only issued in the Eastern part of England which was under Royal control. +IOhANNES ON LV - a completely unrecorded moneyer for type and mint, including North and the EMC / SCBI database - in fact London BMC VI pennies barely get into double figures on the EMC / SCBI database which illustrates just how rare they are.  This is clearly much rarer with the unrecorded moneyer.  Ex Spink (their tickets), ex AMR Coins.  £795

 

WMH-8078:  Stephen NORMAN Hammered Silver Eastern England Issue Penny.  Cross & Piles: B.M.C. VI, circa 1050-54.  Norwich mint - only issued in the Eastern part of England which was under Royal control.  Obverse crowned bust left, +STIEFNE [RE]; reverse: +R[AVDV]L: ON NOR, being Radulf / Raulf / Raul of Norwich.  EMC 2023.0391 and die paired to EMC 2013.0321 to see exactly the reverse moneyer legend.  A very healthy 1.32g.  Spink 1281.  Toned, rarer type, rarer mint, virtually full portrait.  B.M.C. VI is one of the rarest of the standard Stephen issues – Spink 2023 rate it as £1,100 in VF.  Sold with old tickets.  Fund Stanfield.  A very rare find indeed.  £995

 

 

 

Cross Pommee (Awbridge) issue (B.M.C. vii) - a nationwide issue:

 

WMH-7783:  Stephen NORMAN Hammered Silver AWBRIDGE / CROSS POMEE Penny.  B.M.C. VII, 1154-58: +NICOLE ON DVNE – Nicol of Dunwich.  Spink 1282.  From the entire Middle Ages, the only coins attributed to the mint at Dunwich were struck in the reign of Stephen during the decade c.1145-55.  These were BMC types II, VI and VII.  EMC lists in total only fourteen coins for Dunwich, of which x5 are cut fractions.  Of the nine remaining pennies, two are BMC II, six are BMC VI (there are also another seven BMC VI Dunwich coins from the 1989 Wicklewood Hoard that have not made it onto EMC) and only two BMC VII coins, of which one is this coin (EMC/SCBI NUMBER:2022.0037).  It is a different die to the other example.  Struck on a squarish flan, virtually VF and as rare as they come.  £3,375