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

 

Updated 12th November 2021

 

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

 

 

WAu-7157:  Edward III Hammered Gold Noble. Treat-Period, 1361-69.  Class II, Calais mint, voided quatrefoil before EDWARD above sail.  EDW ARD’DI GRA REX AnGL + FRAnC DnS hIB + AQVIT.  7.63 grams, 5h, initial mark cross pattee.  Isladulcie 44, Schneider 1-115, North 1281, Spink 1521.  Good weight, uniformly struck up on round flan – bold VF.  The town of Calais in what is now Northern France was under English rule from 1347 until 7 January 1558, being a bit of a vanity statement for the English monarchs in their claim on the French crown. It cost almost 1/5th of all the revenue collected in England to maintain Calais as an English possession.  The mint closed in 1440 after really only producing limited coinage under Edward III, a tiny amount of gold under Richard II and Henry IV, a miniscule quantity of farthings under Henry V and some of the earlier coinage of Henry VI.  Ex Spink, ex Trajan collection.  £7,895

 

WAu-7097:  Henry V Hammered Gold Noble.  1413-22.  Class C, London.  King standing in his ship, mullet by sword arm, broken annulet on the side of the ship.  6.99g, 8h, i.m. Incurved Cross, Stewartby III, class Ca, Schneider 1, 232.  Spink 1742.  once lightly cleaned, now with a reddish tone.  Uniformly sharp – a handsome bold VF.  Ex Spink, ex Trajan collection.  £7,795

 

WAu-7191:  James II Gold Touch-Piece: Guaranteed to have been personally touched by King James II.  An ancient practice – that of The Devine (the monarchy was seen very much as a physical, tangible extension of God) healing sufferers of Scrofula (Tuberculosis) – dating as far back as Henry II.  All subsequent monarchs took some part in the ceremony (William & Mary refused because William was not of English royal decent) although Henry VIII was the most reluctant.  Interestingly, although somewhat disinclined due to an unwillingness to mingle with the common man, it was Henry who initiated the design of St George and the dragon on subsequent Touching Ceremony gold coins.  Although James’s brother, King Charles II, was an enthusiastic believer in the divine right of kings, James was actually more prolific in his touching, the number of sick being brought to him being as much as 14,364 in one year.  Clearly James II had an extremely short-lived reign, and it must be noted that for the first months of touching, he actually used the left over Charles II gold pieces – some 1,905 of them.  Again, the new touch-pieces were the work of John Roettier.  It is estimated that 1% of the London population suffered during this time), so James was never short of participants.  Interestingly, his ultimately toxic religious views seemed to have mattered very little to the average man in the street who was suffering from this extremely unpleasant disease – if James II could cure him, bring it on!  James II personally attended these ceremonies and physically handed the touch-piece to each and every sufferer.  Sufferers were invited and issued with an official Ticket-Pass to admit them to the ceremony.  You gave your Ticket-Pass in at the door, entered the ceremony, got touched by the king, received your gold coin from the king himself and hopefully left as a cured individual.  The Ticket-Token were collected and re-issued for the next Touching Ceremony.  James II touched no less than 12,000 a year during his short reign.  Touching Ceremonies were scheduled weekly, although never when the weather was warm.  Under Charles II, in 1684 the size of the gold touch-pieces were reduced and this was maintained under James.  The value of these pieces was some 5 shillings so very few would have survived the temptation of being spent as currency and thus quickly melted down upon numerous currency recalls, not least upon the death of monarchs.  Very rare indeed; more so due to the shortness of King James’s reign.  £1,850

 

 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-7035:  William 1st Norman Hammered Silver Penny.  B.M.C. 8 – PAXS type, 1083-86.  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-7077:  William II “Rufus” Norman Hammered Silver Penny.  B.M.C. ii, Cross in Quatrefoil type, 1089-92.  +ÐVRSTAN ON LIN (Ð is TH; IN of LIN ligated) – Lincoln mint.  Spink 1259.  William Rufus literally translated from Latin to William The Red, perhaps an indication of the colour of his hair?  A study of all William II coins recorded with the EMC and SCBI reveals that only 36% are B.M.C. ii.  Rare coin.  £2,495

 

WMH-7219:  Henry 1st  Hammered Silver Round Halfpenny – the best known “Top Pop” example.  Obverse: facing uncrowned head of Henry 1st, hair made up of nine fleur-like ringlets, inner beaded circle with legend surrounding: +HENRIC REX, initial mark cross.  Reverse: +hASLAC ON LIN – Aslakr (moneyer) of Lincoln, central cross potent with groups of pellets in angles.  The very first recorded example of the moneyer for this issue.  Good find patina, official edge snick.  Extremely well struck on a full, large flan and grade good VF.  The legends (obv & rev) are excellent – an interesting aspect of this coin is the use of a capital H in HENRIC.  Accompanying tickets here.  This coin was found near Lincoln 2018 and is fully recorded on the EMC database (2021.0111).  North 872, Spink 1277.  There are approximately twenty two examples of round Henry 1st halfpennies recorded around the world with around half either in museums or fragmentary.  This is the best grade example of all recorded examples, both private or institutional collections – there is no better.  Choice. 

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.  £10,950

 

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-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-7222:  Henry IV Hammered Silver Penny.  Light Coinage issue of 1412-13 only.  [+hENR]ICVS RE[X ANGLIE] legend with excellent portrait showing the typical Henry IV bush hair as well as the clear trefoil on the breast with pellet terminals and a partial missing foot as the trefoil has slipped.  Durham mint - [CIVI] TA[S] DVn OL[M].  0.88 grams, 17mm.  Lord Stewartby states that whilst production of gold throughout the reign of Richard II remained constant, silver was somewhat erratic and far from prolific – silver coins headed for the Continent in huge numbers as silver was worth more there than in the UK.  Under Henry IV it was far more of an issue.  Of the meagre coinage left, what you tend to see of Henry IV coinage (if you’re lucky enough to see any at all!) is coinage worn and clipped to within an inch of its life.  Enough legend remains on this coin to make it unambiguously Henry IV, Durham.  This is one of the best grade Henry IV pennies I have seen.  I was following a Henry IV penny, in similar grade, in a recent London auction.  Whilst the estimate was a come and get me (approximate) £400-£500, the hammer was more than the full asking price on this coin, and that was BEFORE the 25-30% buyer’s commission that auction houses currently charge.  This coin is definitely the best example of a Henry IV penny that I have ever offered for sale.  A very rare coin, particularly so in this grade.  £1,175

 

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

 

WSC-7112:  David 1st Early Scottish Hammered Silver Penny.  1124-53.  In fact David 1st coins were the first Scottish coins to be officially issued.  Period D, posthumous issue struck under Malcolm IV.  Spink 5010 with better workmanship on the dies and although the legends were meaningless, they were at least composed of properly formed letters.  Obverse: crowned bust right with sceptre, legend reads: +NRVOIL; reverse: cross fleurdelisse, pellets in angles, +.NR.  1.29g, die rotation 10h, SCBI 35, 9ff; B 27, fig.8A – same obverse die.  Tentatively attributed to the Roxburgh mint.  Slightly bent but otherwise extraordinarily good grade for this issue at nearly VF.  Indeed, not only have I never seen another coin approaching this grade in the hand, I also have seen nothing as good in reference books.  The National Museum in Edinburgh have no examples and the x5 period D examples shared between the Hunterian (Glasgow) and the Ashmolean (Oxford), one of which is a cut quarter, are not a patch on this one – the portrait of David is absolutely stunning.  A rare and important coin.  £7,625

 

WSC-7208:  James III Hammered Silver Scottish Groat.  The best known example by grade.  The main issue of 1484-88, struck Edinburgh: bust half-left with arched crown.  Annulet on inner circle before bust.  25mm, 2.87 grams.  Found Aberdeen “Some time ago”, ex Alan Hunter collection via a German auction.  Chipped (looks very old) at 6 and 8 o’clock and an unprecedented high grade.  Likely to be the very best portrait known and as collectors will be aware, these coins simply don’t turn up in anything more than fine grade at best.  Choice.  £3,995

 

WI-7196:  Irish Charles 1st “Great Rebellion” Hammered Silver Ormonde TWOPENCE.  Issued by the Lords Justices at Dublin and termed Ormond Money due to the Earl of Ormonde being appointed Lieutenant of Ireland in 1643.  This issue demonstrated allegiance to the monarch by incorporating the king’s crown on the obverse.  AR Twopence (13mm, 0.84 g, 10h). Issued 1643-1644. Large C•R; crown above; all within linear and beaded border / Large I•I; D above; all within linear and beaded border. D&F 310; SCBC 6550.  The twopence is the rarest in terms of extant numbers of all seven denominations, and by some margin.  Very few have been offered for sale in recent years. Toned. VF for issue thus rarer still.  Arguably one of the finest known examples; the piece in the 2000 Millenial sale (Whytes) had been heavily scored on the obverse; the Lockett piece is very small with the arches of the crown reaching the edge of the coin on what is essentially an undersized flan. Among the few other examples I found offered in the last decade this one combines the best centring and completeness of detail as much or more than any other, including the Stack's Tallent piece (April 2008) which sold for $4,000. That piece was partly struck off the flan and the obverse crown was a fair bit cruder.  Choice and excessively rare.  Sold with a cabinet ticket and an information slip.  £1,650

 

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

 

WI-7148:  Richard III Hammered Silver Irish Penny.  Cross & Pellets coinage of 1483-5.  Dublin mint: [CIVI] TAS [DV]B L[IN].  Annulets by neck, distinctive Richard III face: Burns DU-17R, Spink 6410 (2020: £3,500 VF).  Small of flan, as always - it is thought that these coins were not always heavily clipped; rather they were full size dies struck on very short flans.  A very rare coin indeed.  £1,895

 

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