question about medieval seal matrix history

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Henry112345, May 6, 2021.

  1. Henry112345

    Henry112345 Member

    Hi everyone,


    I bought a medieval seal matrix in recently ,and I want to find more history about it and it’s original owner.


    The seal maybe date back to 11~13 th century ,and inscription shows ➕ SI ROBERT BESING ,which means seal of Robert Besing,and the Image of the middle side is iris flower ,and the seal were reported found in nearby Durham of England.


    I tried to search some information about him ,but the information is limited on internet ,I only found “Von Besing”is a Germanic origin surname ,plus before 13th century the seal matrix usually only hold by nobles ,until 14th century being common for general Classic,and the symbol of iris might related to France royal or a member of some basic nobility . Since the skill of seal craving is not very fine ,so I suspect that the origin owner might be a knight or a baron (?)whom might be a France or Germany or a Anglo-Norman ,I’m not sure am I correct ?


    I hope someone could provide me about British Besing family history ,or even better to provide me the medieval times document which mention Robert Besing.

    Please see the picture below

    Thanks a lot.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: May 6, 2021
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  3. Robert Ransom

    Robert Ransom Well-Known Member

  4. Henry112345

    Henry112345 Member

    That is cool , thank you very much
     
  5. Robert Ransom

    Robert Ransom Well-Known Member

    Notice the spelling of the surname, specifically the a/e.

    Edit: I meant the wax impression.
     
  6. Henry112345

    Henry112345 Member

    After doing some research , there is one question come out of my mind , why his field was in Hampshire , but the seal was reported found in Durham ?
     
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  7. Henry112345

    Henry112345 Member

    Haha I was misunderstand your meaning, I have check the seal again , the crave is “e” , is that possible it because it was the old English , so get different spelling ?
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2021
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  8. Robert Ransom

    Robert Ransom Well-Known Member

    Dropped out of a pocket, left while lodging overnight, stolen, etc. I you can dream a reason, it is another possible answer. Maybe lost during a battle or when defending from "Highwaymen."
     
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  9. Robert Ransom

    Robert Ransom Well-Known Member

    Yes.
     
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  10. Henry112345

    Henry112345 Member

    Yes , I know it could be many reason any we could imagine , but I mean Robert was died in 1266 , it was under the period of king Henry iii , in those time they rarely fight with Scottish , usually fighting civil war , for example : 2nd baron war and , or fight with Simon de Montfort , the trace I remember quite offen at the Southern of York , so why would he bother travel long distance to Durham ?

    Although , Basing de St. John is the best answer so far , but I’m still suspect that possible the seal wasn’t belong to him, maybe someone has the same name to him , or maybe did belong to him , lost by his travel something.....

    Thank you for that website information ,it provide me new clue , and I think I will keep digging the information of this seal , if you have any new idea , please and welcome to share with me. Thanks
     
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  11. Robert Ransom

    Robert Ransom Well-Known Member

    I spent 4 years researching my family tree and found multiple spellings for my surname, yet the lineage continued and would periodically revert to the current spelling. Here is the biggest problem you face in your search: The records are sparse the further back in time you search and variations of surname spellings can lead to dead-ends. I was able to trace my tree back to the Plantagenent's and the search was made easier because of the notoriety of the and published articles of this branch of my family. I began an arduous trek attempting to connect to Charlemagne (Charles I) but stopped to rest for a while and will continue the search in the future because I love history.
    Good luck in your search.
     
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  12. Henry112345

    Henry112345 Member

    Wow,that is really cool ,may I ask which member of Plantagenet’s ?


    The period of Plantagenet history is one of my favorite history of England ,I think it is the most interesting time ,those great king such like king Henry II ,wise and brave . Richard I ,full of spirt of Knight ,and have interesting story with Saladin. also I would say Henry III ,because when the time he rule ,the politic of England was pretty awful ,but he still consolidation the throne ,and educated anther wise king Edward I ,the Hammer of Scottish ,he also conquer the Wales. also King Edward III ,he take back many land from kingdom of France ,in my option he was one of the greatest king in British history.


    Well,I think if your ancestor related with Plantagenet ,then it must be connected with Charlemagne ,because in the period of Charles the simple ,he was the direct heir of Charlemagne.


    And the Norman’s leader Rollo (count of Normandy,usually we call duke of Normandy ,but it was a mistake in history ,the title of duke should be after Richard I of Normandy )


    Rollo ,whom married the daughter of Charles the simple ,and was the great grand.... father of William I the Conquer ,and William I was the 3rd great grand father of Henry II ,whom the first king of Plantagenet


    William I / II (son of William)

    Henry I (son of William)

    Matilda (daughter of Henry)

    First king of Plantagenet :Henry II (son of Matilda)),I think you could be easily connected with Charlemange.


    Hope it can help you.
     
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  13. Victor_Clark

    Victor_Clark standing on the shoulders of giants Dealer

  14. Robert Ransom

    Robert Ransom Well-Known Member

  15. +VGO.DVCKS

    +VGO.DVCKS Well-Known Member

    Fantastic seal, @Henry112345. The lettering style is just a little old-fashioned for later temp, Henry III, but only according to what was effectively state-of-the-art. @Robert Ransom nailed it about medieval orthographic variants; frequently, even in legal records, the same individual's name can be rendered more than one way. And the Anglo-Norman aristocratic polity was set up (from the ground up, by William I --and very intentionally) so that even at the level of titled earls, manors were scattered all over the place. William didn't want to be faced with a baronage that was as territorially concentrated, and correspondingly powerful, as what the Capetian kings in France had to deal with.
    In other words, I agree with your assessment of the high probability that Robert St. John of Basin is your guy. Here's some more about him.
    https://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/hants/vol4/pp115-127
    (Edditing in place: ) And here's the entry from a generic looking but reliable genealogical website (the author routinely cites reliable secondary sources):
    https://www.genealogics.org/getperson.php?personID=I00439389&tree=LEO
    To my earlier observations about the lettering style, this notes that Robert was born in 1199; the seal could easily be early 13th c., and his.
    Her's a link to a thread I did on the nearest thing to this that I have.
    https://www.cointalk.com/threads/a-couple-of-medieval-lead-seals.367923/#post-4918658
    I heartily agree about how much cooler it is when you can connect this sort of thing to an individual. Along with heraldic harness pendants, this is effectively the nearest you can get, for England, to a feudal series per se.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2021
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  16. Henry112345

    Henry112345 Member

    I feel it is really amazing , a seal could connected with those interesting history , I will spend some days to carefully research the link you send to me , it is really useful. Thanks.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2021
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  17. +VGO.DVCKS

    +VGO.DVCKS Well-Known Member

    ...Is This Fun, or What?!!?! :<}
     
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  18. Robert Ransom

    Robert Ransom Well-Known Member

  19. dltsrq

    dltsrq Grumpy Old Man

    I've spent some time online and also found an association of the surname Besing with Basing and Basingstoke in Hampshire. Any number of people with ancestral ties to the area may have adopted Besing or Basing as a surname. "Besing" could also mean something we haven't considered. Robert is a common given name. The matrix itself seems rather ordinary to have belonged to a Baron. The pointed oval type is quite common in the 13th and 14th centuries and according to more than one source, popular with clergy and women. I would expect something a bit grander and more armorial for a Baron but I'm not an expert. I saw several matrices online with a similar central fleur, differing mostly in the name of the owner. I couldn't find anything on the significance of the fleur. According to PAS, an initial cross is most common in the 13th. It's possible that this "Robert (of) Besing" may have been a priest or a member of a religious order.

    Probably only a typo in the op but the actual inscription is +SI ROBERTI BESING. "Roberti" is the Latin genitive ("of").
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2021
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  20. Henry112345

    Henry112345 Member

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  21. dltsrq

    dltsrq Grumpy Old Man

    The comment by Dave Evans on the other forum is in line with what I've read and matches my own thinking. I would say that the reference to "William, son of Robert Besing" from 1273 is a very good lead!
     
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