This week’s fresh listings (scroll down):

 

This page is to be updated every Tuesday and will contain all the latest Coin, Medal & Token listings for that particular week.

 

Additions to www.HistoryInCoins.com for week commencing Tuesday 22nd September 2020

 

 

Previous Weeks’ Listings (scroll down this page for “This Week’s Listings”):

 

WTH-6947:  1597 **RAREST DATE** Elizabeth 1st Hammered Silver Tudor Sixpence.  Sixth issue, initial mark Key.  Spink 2578B.  1597 as a date represents a frequency of <0.04% for the 2,716 recorded single finds of Elizabeth 1st coins and <0.03% for all 5,588 recorded Elizabeth 1st hoard coins.  1597 is the rarest of all forty two dates, bar none.  To put this into context, there is only a single 1597 sixpence recorded with PAS, even though they have nearly 3,000 sixpences recorded.  To put the rarity into further context, 1598, the year after this coin (another rare year – in fact the second rarest year in the entire series) has a total of x5 different dies recorded.  1588 has only a single die recorded.  Many people think 1588 (year of the armada) is the rarest date.  In fact, 1588 is only the 4th rarest date.  This coin is ex Walter Wilkinson (an outstanding researcher, a wonderful gentleman; one I was fortunate enough to have some correspondence with before his sad passing, and a man had over the years put together one of the finest known Elizabeth 1st coin collections), ex Mark Senior and probably ex Shuttlewood.  See old tickets here.  This coin is in the top three of best known examples and I wouldn’t be surprised if Walter Wilkinson was being modest when he said that, such was the nature of the man.  I have seen two other 1597 coin in all the time I’ve been involved with coins (trust me; it’s been a long time!) – one was utterly horrible; the other barely a grade better but I was still extremely grateful to be allowed to buy it.  This coin is in a totally different league – I’m still finding it hard to accept that I have in my hands a coin of such great rarity but in such good grade!!  An extremely important coin, not just the reign of Elizabeth 1st but in Tudor coinage in general.  £1,250

 

WCA-6944:  Charles II Hammered Silver Sixpence.  Restoration of the House of Stuart.  Spink 3323.  Hammered coinage continued immediately after the Commonwealth from 1660-62 with the quality of the dies together with the final product deteriorating towards the end (and this issue coin was at the very end), presumably because everyone knew the old hammered style of coinage was definitely going to be replaced by the new and better milled coinage in 1662.  For issue, this is a good example.  £245

 

WSC-6945:  Robert “The Bruce” 1st Scottish Medieval Hammered Silver Penny.  Spink 5076.  Robert, a descendant of David 1st, was crowned in Scone in 1306 and so he reigned over a Scotland that had no Edinburgh until 1313.  Bannockburn followed soon after, leading to the gradual repossession of the kingdom, including Berwick.  It is interesting to note that David II followed Robert Bruce (David married the sister of Edward III in an obvious attempt to cease hostilities) in 1329 and Alexander III’s second coinage ended 1286.  Both those issues were good quality with many excellent examples being extant today.  In between we had Margaret with no coinage and the stop-gap John Baliol followed by Robert Bruce.  Virtually all the coins in that period were poor, which is all the stranger when you bear in mind Alexander III’s second coinage through to David II, including John Baliol and Robert Bruce, used virtually identical dies.  Happily, this coin of Robert Bruce is much above average.  £1,850

 

WSC-6942:  David 1st (in David’s name) Scottish Hammered Silver Penny.  Period A, 1136 to the beginning of the 1140’s.  Cross Moline or Watford type, bust right with sceptre, +DAVI(D R)E: and +DEORLING : ON : EDE.  There is only one recorded example of this moneyer for Edinburgh on the Early Medieval Corpus database and it is this coin (EMC number : 1200.0965).  This, together with the documentation accompanying the coin (see here) suggests that this moneyer is unique.  An excellent provenance: ex Beauvais Hoard (4th November 1987), Glendinings soon after (lot 161) into the famous Conte collection, Singer collection March 2002, CNG auction Jan 2012 (hammer price $7,000) into the Marshall Faintich collection, James & Martha Robertson collection and then on to HistoryInCoins.  Full flan (20mm, 1.41g) with no cracks, chips or indeed any kind of damage or repair.  Virtually all the legend on both sides legible, which in itself is rare.  As such, the coin has been independently graded VF.  Spink 5003.  The last example of a David 1st Period A in David’s name that I saw go through the auctions went for £10,000 and there was either no provenance or virtually none.  The very first independent Scottish king in history to have issued coinage.  Very rare.  £6,475

 

WTH-6943:  Choice Henry VIII Hammered Silver Episcopal Halfgroat with Rarer Initial Mark.  Second coinage, 1526-32, initial mark 121 – “uncertain” mark.  Struck under Archbishop Warham at Canterbury towards the end of this second coinage.  Spink 2343.  High grade (better than VF), toned and choice.  £375

 

WMH-6939:  Henry VI Hammered Silver Medieval Groat.  Rosette-Mascle issue of 1430-31 only, Calais mint.  The town of Calais in what is now Northern France was under English rule from 1347 until 7 January 1558 and it was a bit of a vanity statement for the English monarchs in their claim on the French crown. It cost almost a 1/5th of all the revenue collected in England to maintain the town 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.  Spink 1859.  Priced in Spink the same as the Annulet issue, which frankly amazes me.  Not withstanding the fact that Annulet was in operation over four times longer than Rosette-Mascle, it’s just an undeniable fact that you see many more Annulet groats than you do Rosette-Mascle.  £195

 

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-6941:  David II Medieval Scottish Hammered Silver Penny.  Second coinage, 1351-57.  REX SCOTORVM, which is likely to have been the Edinburgh mint.  Spink 5088.  A high grade, attractive example of a coin that is usually seen worn and / or damaged.  Robert Bruce (immediately prior to David II) and John Baliol pennies also suffer from this phenomenon, whereas the slightly earlier Alexander III second coinage pennies are usually good.  £275

 

WSC-6935:  Alexander III Rarer 1st Issue FORFAR Mint Penny.  Long cross & stars, 1250-80.  WILAM ON FOR - Rare Forfar mint.  Type III, Spink 5043 (£225 / £675 in a very outdated edition).  A rare Scottish mint at an affordable price.  £395

 

WSC-6936:  James 1st Medieval Scottish Hammered Silver Groat.  Edinburgh mint, 1406-37, Spink 5195.  Sold with a couple of detailed tickets (one dealer, one collector).  A rare coin.  £485

 

WMH-6937:  King John Rhuddlan (WELSH) Mint Hammered Silver Short Cross Penny.  Group I, class i: +h(A)LLI.NO.RVLA, initial mark Cross Pattee, 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 1 penny but with a broader face, this coin is less crude than the class ii coins.  The N in hENRICVS is reversed.  An excellent example of the only Medieval coin to be struck in Wales and rarer being group i, class i.  A significant coin and certainly the first of this class I’ve ever had.  £355

 

WJC-6938:  1609 James 1st Hammered Silver Sixpence.  Second coinage, fourth bust, im Key.  Spink 2658.  1609 is a rare date, being rarer than the entire 1603-08 range.  It is also rarer than 1621 and 1623.  Spink 2658 is a rather glaring example of a Spink error or oversight: Spink (2020 edtn) gives 1605 to 1616 inclusive as equal rarity at £65 F, £250 VF.  1605 is fairly common.  To the best of my knowledge, 1616 is unique and 1612 & 1614 probably don’t exist.  1609 is a very rare date.  That aside, this is a remarkably well struck and equally well preserved coin for issue.  Like the Scottish six shillings - a virtually identical series to this one - the later (rarer) dates in the English series were made to a poor standard and invariably turn up in less than desirable grade & condition.  This is an unusually pleasant, problem-free coin.  £185

 

WSC-6930:  James IV Hammered Billon Silver Plack.  One of the rarer monarchs for this denomination.  Sold with old tickets.  Spink 5349.  £155

 

WMH-6931:  King John Hammered Silver Penny.  Class 5b, +PIERES.ON.DVR.  Spink 1351.  Rarer Durham mint town.  £195

 

WJC-6932:  James 1st Hammered Silver First Issue Halfgroat.  1603-4 only, initial mark Thistle, bust right.  Spink 2649.  Uncommon – it’s usually the later non portrait issues that turn up.  £65

 

WCA-6933:  1686 James II Tin Farthing.  A short-reigned monarch.  Ex G.W. Cates collection – see old ticket here.  Spink 3420, Peck 552.  Rare in this grade.  £585

 

WI-6934:  1693 William & Mary Conjoined Busts Copper Halfpenny – High Grade.  A Dublin halfpence that was struck for only three years (the English version was only in operation for one year).  Spink 6597.  Made from the softest of copper (the Charles II copper halfpence issue was equally soft), ie without the “hardening” elements to the alloy of later years, these coins were notoriously prone to wear through minimal handling.  This one an unrecorded overdate.  Rare.  £245

 

WMH-6926:  Henry VI (First Reign) Medieval Hammered Silver Groat.  Annulet Issue of 1422-30 (the first coin issue under Henry VI), Calais mint.  Spink 1836.  The town of Calais in what is now Northern France was under English rule from 1347 until 7 January 1558 and it was a bit of a vanity statement for the English monarchs in their claim on the French crown. It cost almost a 1/5th of all the revenue collected in England to maintain the town 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.  The usual method of photography wasn’t a great success so as a result, I’ve included an image taken in poor, indoor lighting with a cheap camera phone.  £125

 

WTH-6927:  Henry VIII Hammered Silver Episcopal Halfgroat.  Second issue, portrait.  Spink 2345.  Struck under Archbishop Cranmer of Canterbury.  £145

 

WJC-6928:  1636-66 Charles 1st Hammered Silver Shilling.  Tower mint under the king.  Group D, Spink 2791.  Initial mark Crown.  £175

 

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

 

WCA-6925:  1714 Queen Anne Copper Farthing.  The only farthing ever to circulate in currency under Anne, even though it was initially intended as a pattern only.  Spink 3625.  Rare coin.  £625

 

WSax-6910:  Harold “Harefoot” 1st late Saxon Hammered Silver Penny.  Silver Jewel Cross B.M.C.1 penny, 1036-38 only.  +  ON LINCOLI – Lincoln mint town.  Sold with an old ticket (see here).  Wavy flan but beautifully toned and otherwise problem-free.  It was hard to photograph this coin with my normal camera so I’ve included this low resolution image here.  Unbelievably, there were no Harold 1st Lincoln coins of any type in the famous Elmore Jones collection (such an extensive accumulation that it makes an excellent yardstick).  On the EMC database, there is no mention of this exact moneyer.  £875

 

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

 

WAu-6898:  1788 over 87 George III Full gold Guinea.  Fifth laureate bust, “spade” shield.  Extremely rare overdate variety (see here) that is mentioned in Spink (S.3729) as being “known to exist”.  Not mentioned at all in Coincraft.  This image (here) shows the weight and the edge at 12 o’clock to show there has been no mounting of this coin.  A great rarity in the series.  £1,750

 

 


This Week’s Listings

 

*************************************************************************************************

 

It is worth putting last week’s coin back under this section – you’ll see why when you read through.

 

WSC-6946:  Scottish Charles 1st UNRECORDED Hammered Silver 40 Pence.  Third coinage, Briot-Falconer transitional issue of 1637-42 with an F (for Falconer) modified from a B (for Briot) below the reverse thistle.  At first glance this appears to be a standard B below the reverse thistle, so Spink 5576.  However, it’s clearly an F, modified from the earlier B – note the slightly bulbous top vertical and the very start of the bottom bulbous part of the B protruding slightly from the centre, these being the only aspects of the underlying B.  Everything else about this letter is an F.  See the following image, although please note that all letters have been rotated to the upright for ease of use.  There actually is no Falconer 40 pence recorded with an F below, only the B below.  However, Briot’s Spink 5576 with a B below is a B lying on its back, facing upwards, whilst this letter is 180 degrees rotated and facing downwards.  It’s an F for Falconer and as such, unrecorded.  Falconer naturally followed on from Briot during the Third Coinage of Charles 1st Scottish coins so this coin would appear to be a very rare transition from Briot to Falconer.  You’d think that one engraver would be highly unlikely to basically take his predecessor’s dies, churn out coinage and then call them his own by way of putting his mark on them and doing nothing else.  However, Nicholas Briot was appointed master of the Scottish mint in 1634 and later joined by his son-in-law, John Falconer, who eventually succeeded him in 1646.  By keeping things in the family and having an organic “passing on of the baton”, it becomes much more plausible that Falconer did the above.  An interesting coin; potentially the “missing link” between Briot and Falconer.  Perhaps it will be termed Third Coinage, type IIA as it certainly comes before Falconer’s first recorded type III.  £395

 

*************************************************************************************************

 

 

 

WSC-6948:  1553 Mary “Queen of Scots” Hammered Silver **TYPE 1** Testoon.  A single year issue, circulating at four shillings with 0.916 fineness of silver.  The Type II successor of 1555 had, bizarrely, only 0.725 fineness of silver and yet circulated at five shillings.  Spink 5401.  This an excessively rare coin with little more than a handful known.  It is the rarest Scottish Testoon, bar none, and if you take out the 1553 type 1 Half Testoon (a pattern so not strictly currency) and 1565 Ryal (unique?), it is the rarest of all Scottish silver coins.  The portrait of young Mary is outstanding, inspired from a painting by the French artist Francois Clouet who, perhaps progressively for the time (although perhaps not so surprising bearing in mind their nationality), was also known as Janet.  It is interesting to note that this Type 1 Testoon was never counterstamped under James VI even though all the others were, including the portrait left Testoons.  Listed at £4,500 and £12,500 in the now very out of date Spink 2015 Scottish & Irish price guide and virtually guaranteed to be listed at a fair bit more when the 2020/2021 book comes out.  This is a coin that seldom comes up for sale on the open market.  £3,895