A fun lot of silver Roman and Medieval coinage

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Roerbakmix, Aug 6, 2019.

  1. Roerbakmix

    Roerbakmix Well-Known Member

    I'm quite happy with this fun lot of silver medieval coins. Most of them have been found in the north of the Netherlands by a metal detectorist. Don't think I did bad for €75 (~$80).
    Total of 22 coins, two bronze. 16 coins are unbroken, the others are either cut in half or broken in half.

    I recognize a few types: there are some Anglo-Saxon pennies, a Gros-tournois, three Roman (Sev Alex denarius; two bronzes), and the others are left to identify :)

    I'll post more detailed photo's later, so you guys can join the fun!
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  3. Treashunt

    Treashunt The Other Frank

    Good deal, I don't collect them, or I would have grabbed them
  4. Justin Lee

    Justin Lee I learn by doing Supporter

    Not too shabby! Nice! That Severus Alexander appears to have an interesting bust portrait... or maybe it's just me cocking my head to the side... o_O:rolleyes:
  5. ancient coin hunter

    ancient coin hunter I dig ancient coins...

    Nice pick-up. Can't really go wrong for the price.
  6. Marsyas Mike

    Marsyas Mike Well-Known Member

    Great lot. I look forward to seeing what you come up with when you attribute them. It will be interesting to see what was knocking around the Netherlands a long time ago. English pennies? Or Continental imitations?
  7. Roerbakmix

    Roerbakmix Well-Known Member

    So do I! Looking forward to photograph some of them tonight! Only have to work first ...
    Marsyas Mike likes this.
  8. Roerbakmix

    Roerbakmix Well-Known Member

    Coin nr 1: bent and unevenly patinated. I might try to restore this coin later.
    Ruler: Philipe IV (1268-1314)
    Denomination: Gros Tournois, minted: 1285-1314
    Obs: Short cross within circle, inner circle legend + PHILIPPVS REX,
    outer circle legend +BNDICTV : SIT : NOME : DNI : NRI : DEI : IHV XPI;
    rev: Castle + TVRONVS CIVIS, in outer circle twelve circles with fleurs-de-lis, resembling the 12 deniers worth of silver
    Weight: 3.14g; Ø:2.5
    Duplessy 213c, cf. Ciani 203, cf. Lafaurie 217, cf. de Mey 104

    Coin nr 2: struck on a broad flan; edges a bit uneven. Some plastic-like residue on the reverse.
    Sevarus Alexander
    Obv: IMP C M AVR SEV ALEXAND AVG: Bust of Severus Alexander, laureate, draped, right
    Rev: MARTI PACIFERO: Mars, helmeted, standing left, holding olive-branch in right hand and reversed spear in left hand
    RIC 160
    As @Justin Lee mentoined: I like the portrait of Sevarus Alexander. It's a bit more Emperor-like than most of his portraits.
    TheRed, seth77, Jwt708 and 4 others like this.
  9. Roerbakmix

    Roerbakmix Well-Known Member

    Coin nr 3. Probably an Edward III penny. Sides damaged. May need some help with this one.
    Ruler: Probably Edward III
    Denomination: Penny, minted:
    Obs: Crowned king. Legend: + EDWAR ......;
    rev: Large cross, with three pellets in each field.
    Legend: LON (?) ...
    Weight: (will follow - batteries are low) ; Ø:1.9

    Coin nr 4. Also probably an Edward III penny. Very worn, and a bit crumbled.
    Ruler: Probably Edward III
    Denomination: Penny, minted:
    Obs: Crowned king.
    Ledgend: +EDW ... VB;
    rev: Large cross, with three pellets in each field. Ledgend: not sure
    Weight: g; Ø:1.7

    Coin nr 5. I think this is Richard II, not sure though. Also, very worn, but some lettering is visible, notably the R....DVS on the observe, and EBORACI at reverse.
    Ruler: Richard II (1367-1400)
    Denomination: Penny, minted: 1377-1399
    Obs: + RICARDVS REX ANGLE, crowned bust facing;
    rev: CIVITAS EBORACI, long cross with three pellets in each angle, quatrefoil in center, saltire stops
    Weight: 0.98g; Ø:1.9
    Seaby 1692
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2019
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  10. Roerbakmix

    Roerbakmix Well-Known Member

    Coin nr. 6. A halved penny. I like this coin a lot: it looks really nice in hand, with a good patina and clear lettering. The coin is from an interesting period, nearing the end of John II.
    I'm not really sure about the reverse, as after "LKЄ • OH" there seems to be a "C" (though it may be an "L"?).
    Ruler: John II (1166-1216)
    Denomination: Halved penny, minted: Fulco, moneyer. Struck 1205-1207, in the name of Henry II
    Obs: crowned facing bust holding scepter. Legend: visible "ЄHRICVS", full legend reads: (star) ҺЄHRICVS RЄX ;
    rev: Voided short cross with pellet at center and four pellets in each quarte. Legend, visible: "LKЄ • OH", whole legend reads: + FVLKЄ • OH • LVND
    Weight: 0.75g; Ø:1.8
    S.1351; North 970; SCBI 56 (Mass)

    Coin nr 7. Another halved penny. This one is difficult, as the name of the ruler is on the other halve. The observe legend reads "CVS REX :" (HENRICVS REX?); the reverse something like "OIO HIT"; voided long cross with three pellets per field.
    Weight 0.67, diameter 1.8cm.

    Coin nr 8. A very small, fragile and lightweight silver coin. Zoomed in at the maximum of my macro lense.
    Weight 0.29 g; diameter 1.2 cm
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2019
  11. Roerbakmix

    Roerbakmix Well-Known Member

    Coin nr. 9. Idem: very small, fragile and lightweight. (are these farthings?)
    Obv: crowned head. “EX”
    Rev: “CIV”, long cross with open ends, three pellets.
    Diameter 1.2 cm, weight 0.33 g

    Coin nr. 10.
    Obv: crowned head.
    Rev: “DON CIVIS …”, long cross, three pellets
    Diameter 1.1 cm, weight 0.27 g
  12. Roerbakmix

    Roerbakmix Well-Known Member

    So, to sum up the first 10/22 coins:
    Coin 1: Gros Tournois Philip IV, minted: 1285-1314
    Coin 2: Denarius Sevarus Alexande, minted: 222-228
    Coin 3: Penny, probably Edward III
    Coin 4: Penny, probably Edward III
    Coin 5: Penny, Richard II, minted: 1377-1399
    Coin 6: Halve penny, John II, minted: 1205-1207
    Coin 7: Halve penny, probably Henry III
    Coin 8: Farthing (?)
    Coin 9: Farthing (?)
    Coin 10: Farthing (?)

    Coin 1 and 6 are winners so far :)
    Coin 3-4 and 7 need a second (or third) look.
    For coin 8-10, I've sent an email to the owner of this website (http://hammered_farthings.tripod.com/index.htm) who seems to know a thing or two about Farthings.
    Marsyas Mike likes this.
  13. Roerbakmix

    Roerbakmix Well-Known Member

    I've got a reply from Brad, the owner of http://hammered_farthings.tripod.com/index.htm regarding coin 8,9 and 10, which he ID'd correctly (impressive IMHO, concerning the state):

    So here they are again:
    Coin 8:
    Ruler: Henry VIII (1491-1547)
    Denomination: Halfpenny, minted: London mint, England; 1509-1547
    Obs: [portcullis mintmark] hEnRICxDIxGRAx[REX---];
    rev: CIVI TAS xLOn DOn
    Weight: 0.33g; Ø:1.2cm
    Catalogue: Spink 2334; Withers: 1f
    Acquired: 02-08-2019

    Coin 9:
    Ruler: Edward I (1239-1307) or Edward II (1284-1327)
    Denomination: Farthing, minted: London mint, England; 1272-1327
    Obs: +EDWARDVSREX[--];
    Weight: 0.27g; Ø:1.1cm
    Catalogue: withers type 30
    Acquired: 02-08-2019

    Coin 10:
    Ruler: Henry VIII (1491-1547)
    Denomination: Halfpenny, minted: London mint, England; 1509-1547
    Obs: [portcullis mintmark] hEnRIC[xDIxGRAxRE]X xA ;
    rev: xCIVI TAS LOn DOn
    Weight: 0.31g; Ø:1.2cm
    Catalogue: Spink 2334; Withers: 1b
    Acquired: 02-08-2019

    So, to sum up the first 10/22 coins:
    Coin 1: Gros Tournois Philip IV, minted: 1285-1314
    Coin 2: Denarius Sevarus Alexande, minted: 222-228
    Coin 3: Penny, probably Edward III
    Coin 4: Penny, probably Edward III

    Coin 5: Penny, Richard II, minted: 1377-1399
    Coin 6: Half penny, John II, minted: 1205-1207 (still not completely sure about this one)
    Coin 7: Half penny, probably Henry III
    Coin 8: Halfpenny Henry VIII, minted 1509-1547
    Coin 9: Farthing Edward I or II, minted 1272-1327
    Coin 10: Halfpenny Henry VIII, minted 1509-1547

    Not entirely sure about the ID of coins 3, 4, 6, and 7. Hoping for some expert on these coins!
    Marsyas Mike and TheRed like this.
  14. seth77

    seth77 Well-Known Member


    I think that your gros tournois is similar to Duplessy 214, Ciani 206, Lafaurie 218. Gros a l'0 long instead of O rond (Duplessy 213). These later types (cca. 1290-1295 cf. Duplessy, but possibly later to around 1305) are often of varying weights, on the lower side. Yours is a full gram and some lighter than the poids theorique acc. to Duplessy.

    Considering that 1 gros tournois at the regular 958/1000 standard was valued starting with the mid 1290s at 13.125 deniers tournois rather than the 12 deniers standard of 1266, this might point out to the financial difficulties that would plague the French Kingdom around and during the Flemish Wars and/or to the debasement of the double tournois after 1300 (there are no deniers assigned to around 1300 to 1307, just the doubles of 1295-1303 and 1303-1305).

    As Duplessy 213c, the separatifs variations, dates plausibly to 1305 (a full inflation period, with the double tournois falling to as low as 159/1000 silver content) this issue might also follow the same overall trend and be paired with the double tournois #229a, of 1303-1305.

    This later date even fits with the silver quantity calculations and with a lower weight gros, taking into account a valuation in 1305 of 13.125 double tournois (so 26.25 deniers tournois) for a gros:

    13.125 x 0.2289 ~~ 3.14 x 0.958

    Which points to at least an error in Duplessy for the poids theorique of #214 or to an otherwise unlisted gros issue of 1303-1305 (on the later side of this?) of cca. 3.12-3.14g gros at the regular 0.958/1000 title. And a two times higher valuation of the gros vs the denier in 1305.

    It would be very nice if you could certify the silver title, but nonetheless a very interesting find.
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2019
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  15. swish513

    swish513 Penny & Cent Collector

    Coin #3 is London mint, Coin #4 is Canterbury mint. Still trying to narrow down which Edward it is (I, II, or III). Coin #4 ends in HYB not VB. ALL Edwardian pennies end in HYB. It's short for Ireland.
  16. swish513

    swish513 Penny & Cent Collector

    Reverse legend reads: CIVI TAS CAN TOR (civitas cantor, or city of canterbury)
  17. TheRed

    TheRed Well-Known Member

    Those are some very cool coins @Roerbakmix
    Coins 3 and 4 are Edward I pennies. The pennies of the 1st and 2nd coinages of Edward III are very rare. The 3rd (Florin) coinage of Edward III has a very pronounced crown with central fleur and is quite distinct from the pennies of Edward I and Edward II.
    With the 4th coinage of Edward III the bust of the king features large shoulders, which your coins don't have. See below as an example.

    Coin 7 is a Voided Long Cross penny of Henry III. It is class 3 and from the mint of Canterbury. Coin 6 looks to be a Class 5 Sorry Cross penny of John, but I'm not sure about the moneyer and mint. The visible letters look like NE · ONC· That said, I don't have the coin in hand so you would be a better judge of the reverse legend.
    Marsyas Mike, Bing and Orfew like this.
  18. swish513

    swish513 Penny & Cent Collector

    A bifoliate crown is found on class 10 of Edward I, and throughout Edward II and III. These are clearly bifolaite crowns. A trifoliate crown would make it Edward I as only he had that on his pennies.
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2019
  19. Roerbakmix

    Roerbakmix Well-Known Member

    @seth77 Thanks for the detailed reaction on the gros tournois. It certainly is an interesting coin. Am I correct to understand that the weight of 3.14 g may point towards an unlisted gros issue (of 1303-1305), given that the silver content is 0.958 or similar?
    Are there any suggestions on how to (non-destructively) measure the silver content?

    @swish513 and @TheRed: I followed your discussion with great interest. In order of coins, the determination offered by you are:
    Coin 3: Edward I penny, London mint
    Spink 1380-1414​
    Coin 4: Edward I penny, Canterburry mint.
    Spink 1419​
    Coin 6: Class 5 Short Cross penny of John (I'll look at the reverse lettering when I get home)
    Coin 7: Henry III, Canterburry mint.

    I may have misunderstood, but @swish513: are you disupting the ID of Edward I?

    I'll post the remainder of the coins, given they are nice enough to photograph, hopefully this evening.
  20. seth77

    seth77 Well-Known Member

    I lean towards an incomplete entry in Duplessy's catalog at #214, which should have variations similar to #213. Completing the entry would probably make your coin Duplessy 214c (based on the correspondence of the motifs separatifs of 213c) and date it to 1305 like the previous entry. This later date would also mean that the value of 13.125 is not related to deniers tournois (there were none issued in the 1300s up until 1307) like Duplessy notes, but rather the inflationary double tournois of 1303-1305 that had a very low silver title. 13.125 double tournois for a gros of 1305 means a sum of account of 26.250 deniers tournois. But the deniers were almost nonexistent by this stage. The denier tournois of 299/1000 from the mid 1290s was most likely hoarded 1298-1303 and later during the Flemish Wars.
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2019
  21. Deacon Ray

    Deacon Ray Smiles, everyone! Supporter

    I like your Azes II tetradrachm avatar/icon, @Roerbakmix . I collect Indo-Scythian coins and just purchased a tetradrachm to replace one that I sold.
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