A selection of choice Ancient & Hammered coins for sale through HistoryInCoins.com

 

Updated 6th July 2020

 

(Please check the ACTUAL listings pages which, unlike this, are kept bang up to date):

 

 

WSax-5772:  Eadmund Middle Saxon Hammered Silver Penny.  936-46 AD.  Kings of all England era.  Moneyer Aelfwald, B.M.C. I.  Extra image added here.  Full flan, toned, problem-free.  Spink 1105.  A lovely example.  £990

 

WSax-7052:  Aethelred II Late Saxon Hammered Silver *EXCESSIVELY RARE MINT* Penny.  B.M.C. VIII – Helmet type, Spink 1152.  Obv: +AEÐELRED REX A.NG, Rev: +PVLFMER M’O GODA – Gothaburg (Castle Gotha) mint – (presumed) St Austell, Cornwall.  Ex Spink, ex Doubleday, ex Argyll, ex Drabble, ex Talbot Ready, etc – an impressive provenance with some very well known names.  Sold with old tickets.  Stable crack at 5 o’clock in which no light shows through.  An extremely rare coin.  £2,150

 

WSax-6334:  Cnut Late Saxon Hammered Silver Penny.  B.M.C. XVI - Short cross type (1029-35/6), “+BLACAMAN O SNO”.  Spink 1159.  Nottingham mint.  An extremely rare mint coin.  Ex Cnut hoard of 1993, ex Sharp collection, ex Baldwins, ex Spink, ex Lord Stewartby collection.  Sold with three tickets (two shown here).  A very rare coin.  £1,995

 

WSax-7055:  Harold 1st Late Saxon Hammered Silver Penny.  B.M.C. V: Fleur-de-Lis type, c.1038-40, Spink 1165.  +LEOFPINE ON ÐEO – Thetford mint.  Sold with old tickets.  EF grade and toned.  Rare.  £1,885

 

WMH-6389:  William 1st Hammered Norman Penny.  Sandwich mint: +IELFHEH.ON.SAND, Profile right type (B.M.C. 7).  Spink 1256 (listed £3,000 for type and moneyer in 2017).  The rarest of the William 1st types and from a rare mint town – there are only two examples of this type and moneyer listed on the EMC and SCBI databases with one of those being a fragment and the other not as good as this coin.  Ex Lord Stewartby, ex Spink.  Excessively rare and choice.  £2,495

 

WMH-6880:  William 1st Hammered Norman Penny.  Lincoln mint: +VLF ON LINCINEI (Ulf of Lincoln).  Profile right type (B.M.C. 7).  Spink 1256.  Only three other recorded examples, none of which are a die match to this coin.  1.43g.  The rarest of all the William 1st types.  £1,395

 

WMH-7035:  William 1st Norman Hammered Silver Penny.  B.M.C. 8 – PAXS type.  Rare Nottingham 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.  +PILLELM REX / +MIINII ON SNOTI.  Toned and although described as VF on the modern ticket, I’d go further and say Good VF for issue because as this ticket points out, ALL examples of this die are weekly struck below the bust.  Spink 1257, North 850, Mack 1349 (not surprisingly, this coin).  Bought Spink and subsequently sold into the famous R.P. Mack collection October 1953.  Glendinnings in November 1975 dispersed the collection.  Old tickets here.  Very rare.  £2,375

 

WMH-6308:  Henry 1st Hammered Silver Norman Penny.  B.M.C. 4 – cross & piles issue of 1105 only.  Aelfwine of London.  Some ligation to reverse legend (N-E and O-L).  A very early Henry 1st issue, pre-dating the official test cut practice.  A high grade, well struck example in a notoriously badly struck issue.  £1,755

 

WMH-5799:  Henry 1st Hammered Silver Norman Penny.  B.M.C. 6 – pointed bust with stars.  Extra (more recent) image here.  Full frontal crowned bust of Henry 1st, vertical sceptre to king’s right, three large stars to king’s left.  GODRIC of Lincoln.  This is an exceptionally rare issue, being struck in AD 1107 only.  Whilst B.M.C. VIII is probably harder to source, B.M.C. 6 coins are priced higher in Spink (B.M.C. VI have the highest valuation for any Henry 1st penny).  There are only two B.M.C. VI Lincoln coins listed on the EMC database, one of which is this coin (reference 2013.0242, found Market Rasen).  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”.  This coin looks to have been minted BEFORE the initiation of this practice.  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.  A very rare coin.  £2,195

 

WMH-6322:  Henry 1st Hammered Silver Norman Penny.  B.M.C. 7, quatrefoil with piles type.  Moneyer:  Godwine of Wallingford.  Spink 1268.  Whilst Godwine is recorded as being a moneyer at the mint, Godwine is NOT known for type 7.  This coin effectively re-writes the reference books.  The official test cut at 5 o’clock is as expected - 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.  Type 7 coins are rare coins, as are Wallingford mint coins in general.  A unique coin.  £2,195

 

WMH-6566:  Henry 1st Hammered Silver Norman Penny.  B.M.C. 11, double inscription type, 1119 only.  Mint and moneyer:  PVLFGAR of London.  Spink 1272 and one of the rarest of all the Henry 1st types.  Official test cut at 11 o’clock (obv) - 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.  Full flan and weight of 1.37 grams / 21.1 grains.  Weakly struck on the face – extra image here.  No examples recorded on the EMC or SCBI databases.  A very rare coin.  £1,475

 

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 I first came to light 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; 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 only twenty examples recorded with around half either in museums or fragmentary.  £7,950

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.  £8,850

 

WMH-6718:  King John Rhuddlan (WELSH) Mint Hammered Silver Short Cross Penny.  Group II, class iii, SIMOND.NO.RVLA – Rhuddlan mint.  Initial mark Cross Pommee, Spink p.167.  Wren, in his book on short cross coinage, states of the Rhuddlan mint coinage: “These coins are considerably cruder than the normal issues and the legends are sometimes retrograde, with reversed lettering”.  Being very loosely based on the English class 5 penny, this coin is certainly struck from a crude obverse die but contrasted sharply with an excellent quality reverse die that is clear, well struck with no reversed lettering and the only sign of being retrograde the NO for ON.  An excellent example of the only Medieval coin to be struck in Wales.  £335

 

WMH-6668:  Henry IV Hammered Silver HALF Groat.  London, light coinage (1412-13 only).  Annulet (filled die) to left of crown, pellet to right, slipped trefoil on breast – Spink 1730.  Comes with an old Seaby coin envelope and an equally old ticket.  Potter III/4, dies 2/2.  Very little coinage was produced during this period due to a severe shortage of silver bullion in the UK with the bulk of that heading to the Continent (and thus the melting pot) where the price of silver was more than it was in the UK at that time – think taking £10 notes from the UK and exchanging them for the equivalent of £15 each on the Continent.  Henry IV pennies rarely turn up, groats once in a blue moon (and then they are usually Henry IV / Henry V mules listed under Henry V in Spink as the obverses are Henry V), halfgroats virtually never.  Along with Richard III halfgroats, the Henry IV halfgroat is probably one of the rarest mainstream coins you’ll come across.  In the July 2019 Marvin Lessen DNW sale, a heavy issue Henry IV halfgroat went for £6,000 – see here.  The coin for sale here is somewhat cheaper than the Marvin Lessen coin!!  £1,895 

 

WMH-6940:  Richard III Hammered Silver Penny.  An exceptional portrait for issue.  1483-85, York mint.  T and upright Key at neck - Spink 2168.  Struck under Archbishop Rotherham of York.  The coin may at first glance appear to be clipped.  It is not.  Lord Stewartby (English Coins 1180 – 1551 by Spink, 2009) states: “The flow of ill-struck and often illegible pence from the northern episcopal mints continued unabated.  (Archbishop) Thomas Rotherham of York was arrested by Richard in June 1483, but soon released.”  The production of short flan, underweight coins (ie face value one penny but actual silver content some way below that) would obviously be financially lucrative for the person doing it.  Archbishop Rotherham would appear to have got away with just that as the practice continued throughout Richard’s very short reign.  A high grade coin with an excellent portrait of the rather unsavoury Richard III, whose body was recently discovered in a Leicestershire car park.  Rare.  £785

 

WTH-6325:  Edward VI Hammered Silver Portrait Halfgroat.  First issue of 1547-49.  Spink 2459.  Rare in this grade - £1,350 in VF and this is about that grade for issue.  Ex Spink.  £1,185

 

WTH-6587:  Philip and Mary Hammered Fine Silver Issue PORTRAIT Penny.  Initial mark Lis.  Very clear legends, good portrait and problem-free.  Spink 2510.  Sold with these old tickets.  This fine silver portrait issue is many times rarer than the billon issue but when it does turn up, coins are invariably damaged or come with problems or issues.  I’ve had one other of these and seen perhaps two more in 30 odd years.  Of the four, this is as easily the best and probably the cheapest as the other three were all over £2,000.  Mary was the only child of Henry VIII (her mother was Catherine of Aragon) to survive to adulthood.  Mary quickly and efficiently disposed of Lady Jane Gray – proclaimed Queen when Mary’s younger brother Edward VI, died at age 9 – by beheading her, a process not unfamiliar to her, being the daughter of Henry VIII!!  Mary’s marriage to Philip of Spain was entirely political – his close aid once wrote: "The marriage was concluded for no fleshly consideration”!  Rare and choice.  £2,250

 

WCom-5686:  1658 Oliver Cromwell Milled Silver Halfcrown.  Rare Dutch copy, late 1600’s to very early 1700’s, cast from the Simon dies.  The coin is unusual in two aspects:  Firstly, the amount of wear indicates the coin was passed into circulation.  These Dutch copies were intended to supply collectors with Cromwell coins rather than be used as currency.  Very few coins were available at this time due to the unpopularity of Cromwell after the Restoration.  It is recorded that of the small number of coins that were not recalled by the mint, many were deliberately defaced.  Interestingly, I have never seen such a defaced Cromwell coin, in the same way that I have never seen a contemporary counterfeit Henry 1st penny (BMC 6-14), although the mint at the time obviously thought it was a problem because they officially cut every coin leaving the mint to show the public the coin was silver.  Being cast after the Protectorate, the Cromwell halfcrown would not have circulated in the UK so presumably passed into European circulation, being just a lump of silver in that market place.  Secondly, and more interestingly, this coin is 11.98 grams.  It is also a smaller flan by a mm or so.  As a cast silver coin, it is difficult to understand how you could create a smaller, lighter coin from the original.  The nature of casting dictates like for like.  Double shillings or Florins were issued in this later Dutch / Tanner period.  Although they are recorded as being double thickness shillings, it is extremely interesting to note that the weight of these florins was 12g, exactly the same weight as this coin.  Further research required on this intriguing coin.  £1,125

 

WCom-6900:  1654 Commonwealth Hammered Silver Crown.  Initial mark Sun, 29.14 grams, 43mm.  Spink 3214.  A very large coin with several old tickets etc – see here.  The 1654 (rated R3) is similar in rarity to 1651 and 1652, with 1649 being slightly rarer still.  The two common dates that invariably turn up, 1653 (rated N) and 1656 (rated R) have many more extant examples compared to 1654.  Inverted A for V in VS (GOD IS WITH VS) which although ESC do list known varieties (ie the 56 has three listed), it is not recorded.  Obviously Spink don’t list it either.  A pleasant circulated, problem-free rarer date Commonwealth crown.  £2,650

 

WI-7005:  Charles 1st Hammered Silver Blacksmith’s Issue Half Crown.  An issue of the Irish Confederate Catholics.  Spink 6557.  Circa 1642 and described in literature as follows: “Struck in Kilkenny, this issue was very crude in both style and production…” I’ve only ever owned one other of these although, I’ve seen a couple more on my travels in various collections.  They are ALWAYS poor, should you be lucky enough to come across one.  I dug out the old description when I sold the last Blacksmith half crown, which was, incidentally, from the well respected Brian Dawson collection :  If you’re waiting to acquire something resembling an English Charles 1st half crown for your collection, even in Fine or less grade, save yourself an indeterminate wait as they do not exist.  Here is an image of that coin.  Well, your wait is over as I unreservedly take back what I previously stated because clearly, they do exist!  34mm diameter, a very good weight of 14.62 grams (15g being the English standard but more commonly found similar to this weight), toned and VF for issue, being not far off the Spink plate coin, which will be the very best example they could source to photograph and which is probably worth many, many thousands of pounds.  Here’s another image of this coin, taken with a low resolution camera phone.  Tickets: Ex Sotherby sale, 1972, where it was sold into the famous Bridgwater House collection, where it remained until that collection was recently dispersed.  A very rare coin – one that is seldom offered to the open market and virtually never in this grade.  Choice.  £3,495

 

WI-7012:  Irish Hammered Silver “Three Crowns” Geraldine Groat.  August to October 1487 only.  Struck under the Fitzgeralds of Kildare, a powerful family who took control for a brief period after Lambert Simnel’s abortive attempt to win the crown (after Richard III, preceding Henry VII).  Spink 6432.  An extremely rare issue in lower grade and virtually unheard of in this VF grade.  Sold with a detailed information slip.  Choice.  £1,450

 

WSC-6929:  James Francis Edward Stuart / James III of Scotland Silver Touch Piece.  See the excellent “The Sovereign Remedy” by Noel Woolf (ISBN 0 901603 01 5) for everything you need to know about touchpieces and the Kings & Queens that personally handed them out.  The would-be James III of England or James VIII of Scotland was in exile in Italy immediately following his second unsuccessful invasion of Scotland in 1715.  It was while in exile in the Palazzo del Re, Rome (courtesy of the pope) that he had these silver touch pieces made for both his English and Scottish supporters.  This example is very much an Italian commission due to the IAC.III obverse legend, as opposed to the French commissioned English IAC 3 and Scottish IAC 8 reverse legends.  James gave them out in very tiny quantities during special Touching Ceremonies where, because he was in direct contact with God, he had the power to cure Scofula (TB).  Or so he believed.  This one is from a collection dating back to the 1880's – see tickets.  This image here, from an auction just last year, illustrates  just how rare these Scottish pieces are (and how bad the auction house was at estimating value!) - they were produced in such tiny quantities and very few survived.  Guaranteed to have been personally touched by James when he gave this out to a Scrofula sufferer at one of the ceremonies.  This is a piece of Scottish and English (but mainly Scottish!!) history.  £1,475

 

WSC-6460:  David II Medieval Scottish Hammered Silver Penny.  Second coinage, 1351-57.  VILLA ABERDON – the very rare Aberdeen provincial mint.  Spink 5121 where the 2020 price guide lists this coin at £1,100.  I am unaware of any Aberdeen pennies coming up for sale in recent or even non recent times.  A great rarity – an Aberdeen Groat in this series (Spink 5103) achieved a final price of $4288 – well over £3,000 – in the January 2021 CNG sale.  £795

 

WSC-7054:  David II Medieval Scottish Hammered Silver Groat.  Second coinage, VILL AA BER DON – rare Aberdeen mint.  Spink 5103.  Ex Murrey, ex Spink, ex Carlyon-Britton, ex Parsons, ex Glendinings, etc.  An impressive provenance with some very well known names.  Attractively toned, especially on the reverse.  Sold with old tickets.  Spink 5103.  The last Aberdeen mint David II groat I saw go through auction achieved a hammer price approaching two thousand and I can’t imagine it had as good a provenance as this one.  £1,350