I. THE Saxons and Franks bordered upon one another in their ancient seats between the Elbe and the Rhine, and changed their countries much about the same time; i.e. a little before the year of Christ 450. For a King of the Franks dying, left two sons, who contended for the Kingdom; the elder (whose name we know not) took part with Attila, and brought an army to him; as the younger did to Aetius. This seems, by good Authors, to have been Meroveus, a very valiant Prince, and great friend to the Romans. To him, after that great battle, Aetius gave part of Gallia, then very much depopulated by those destructive wars: which he going to possess, took with him the whole remainder of his nation; into whose country the Saxons succeeded. But a few years after, a considerable part of them relinquished it, accepting that invitation into Britain. Both nations seem to have spoken the same language, and retained the same customs, and to have imitated one another, as in many other things, so in their coins; both as to figure, weight, and manner of stamping. On the one side placing the King’s face, and sometimes his name only; on the other, the name of the Mint-master, and sometimes of the governour of the place where coined. So that there is little or no Erudition to be gained by them: (though their predecessors, the Britains, were careful, after their embracing Christianity, to express some of its customs and ceremonies.) But in this they differed, that the Franks used more variety, and frequent changes, both of allay, weight, and value, in their coins; and their Princes made more use of their seigneurage, or sovereign power of coining, to the no small disadvantage and trouble of their subjects; insomuch that they petition’d King Charles VII. to quit this his prerogative; and on that condition they would consent, that he should impose upon them tailles (taxes) and aides. To which the King consented; reserving to himself only such a proportion of the seigneurage, as might pay the Officers of the mint, and the charges of fabrication. Whereas, this Nation hath very seldom practised it, either then, or since. And though the French writers very much applaud us for it; yet the reason may be, that we have not such great occasions and necessities to force us to it. Therefore neither have we such variety of laws, records, or regulations of moneys, as in France are in the Court des monnoies, established for those orderings and pleas concerning their money. And I conceive the reason to be, because very much more money was requisite to be coined in that rich and spacious dominion (which was, because of its situation, exceedingly frequented by merchants;) than in this small corner: as, I think, appears from this, that all our money is readily fabricated in one place, whereas in France more than twenty are hardly sufficient. And though, in the Saxon times, the like licence was granted to several cities and large towns; yet it seems, by the remains which we find of them, that no great quantity was here coined; nor can I imagin whence they should procure any great quantity of bullion.
II. Though there be not much Erudition in these coins (as indeed neither was there in the times of the later Emperors of Rome, who after Aurelian, did more regard the profit of the money, than the honour of their actions,) yet something now and then occurs. But I think there is no man who would not be glad to see the countenances, and other relicts, of their victorious Ancestors. For, notwithstanding what some have written, it seems very difficult to shew such a succession of worthy Princes in any nation, as were those of the Saxons; especially the progeny and successors of Cerdic in the West. For, even when Pagans, they were very active, valiant, and warlike; and governed their people in great justice and peaceableness. Amongst so many of them, it is wonderful to see how few were slothful, or vicious.
III. Concerning their coins in general, it is observable, that we had much fewer of brass, than silver; ⌈till a vast quantity of them were found at Rippon, Ann. 1695.Mr. Thoresby. But as to Gold, there are no Saxon moneys of that metal in any Repository now in being, nor mention of such in any authentick Record.⌉ Most of their Coins are also small (pennies) equal to about three of our pence. They are likewise thin, to hinder falsifying. The Kings, even when the Kingdom was reduced to one Monarchy, had several minting-houses. Divers Bishops also, and some Noblemen, had privileges to coin. King ÆthelstanAEthelstan had at London eight; at Winchester six; at Lewis, Hastings, Hampton, Wereham, in each two; at Chichester one; at Rochester three, (the King two, the Bishop one); at Canterbury seven, (the King four, the Archbishop two, the Abbot one) &c. The reverse upon their coins was for the most part quarterly divided: for at first they made no other money, and when they would have a half-penny or farthing, they broke them into two or four parts; and these are called broken money to this day. Hoveden saith, that Henry I. was the first that coined half-pence and farthings, because before his time, when any one would pay a half-penny or farthing, it was done by breaking the penny into two or four parts. Harding also saith, that Edward IV. was the first, who coined groats or great pennies; which I think is false, for those peices were stamp’d in Edward the third’s time,Mr. Thoresby. ⌈as appears by several, coined in that reign, both at York and London, and now preserved in the Musæum Musaeum of Mr. Thoresby. One of which (to put this matter out of all doubt) has Aquitain; which shews that it was minted before the Kings of England assumed the title of France. But in the noble Repository of the Right Honourable the Earl of Pembroke, an accurate Judge in this, and many other parts of Learning, there is a much greater Rarity, viz. a Groat of King Edward the First; which Prince (and not Henry I.) took away the use of broken monies, and coined half-pence and farthings round, which continued till the reign of King James I, who left off coining of silver farthings.⌉ The Danes also, whilst they governed here, used the Saxon-like penny; though they reckoned by † † Oras.Ores; but having never seen any of them, I conceive it was not the name of any coin, but used only in accounting; as with us, a mark, a noble, &c.
IV. Ingulfus observes, that the Saxon alphabet was changed by King ÆlfredAElfred , who being very learned and curious, introduc’d the French manner of writing. Their former hand seems to have borrowed much from the Runic, as you may see in the Table added to the last plate of the Roman Coins. That which he introduced, was according to the best Roman at that time used, though he took it from the French. For, by those characters, we may make a good judgment of the writings of those times, and the antiquity of the Manuscripts. Their W (the form whereof may be seen in the Saxon Alphabet) was peculiar to them: it seems to have been in pronunciation the same with the V consonant; which anciently, I believe, did not partake of the B. For that sound, the Emperor Claudius invented the Digamma ÆolicumAEolicum ; but, after his death, it was disused. Vir the Saxons pronounced were; vallum, wall; vidua, widwe a widow, and the like. The Greeks expressed Vespasianus, by , the Latins called vinum, the Saxons wine. More may be observed concerning their alphabet; which perhaps may be considered in another place.
V. Mr. Thoresby. ⌈The Saxon Coins in the following
Tables, which are distinguished from the rest by their largeness, are supposed by persons of Curiosity to be
indeed larger by far than the Originals; and tho’ Speed hath delineated them so, before the lives of the Monarchs, it
is certain, that the Saxon
was merely nominal, as our Marks and Nobles, and that no larger pieces were ever coined, than their
Pennies, which in their dimensions are between the Sizes of the three pences and groats of
the late hammered monies. And to put this matter beyond dispute, tho’ some of these large pieces are ascribed to Sir
Andrew Fountain and Mr. Thoresby, they have, in their respective Musæum’s, none larger than
the common sort; one only excepted, which yet is no larger, than according to the † † Fountain’s
Tab. ix. Num. incert. II.draught thereof.
VI. To make the Saxon Coins more intelligible to such as are not well acquainted with their Characters; besides Mr. Walker’s Notes, the Inscriptions in each Table are given in modern characters by Mr. Thoresby; the remaining letters of each word (not expressed in the Inscription) being added in smaller letters.⌉
Saxon Coins. Tab. I.
Notes upon Tab. I. by Mr. WALKER.
1, 2. THE first and second are of the same Cuthred King of Kent, (there seem very few coins of the Kings of Kent, extant). There were also two of the same name, West-Saxons, and Christians. This Cuthred was by Coenuulf King of Mercia made King instead of Eadbertus Pren. He reigned (though obscurely, as being set up by an enemy) eight years, and died Anno 805.
3. The third is of Plegmund, Anno 890. chosen by God and all his Saints (saith the Saxon Chronicle) to be Archbishop of Canterbury. He was a person of excellent worth, for learning, prudence, and devotion: at first, an Hermit living near Chester; whence he was brought by King Alfred, both to instruct him when young, and advise him when he came to his Kingdom; by whom also he was thus advanced. He was in great veneration in the whole Church, as appears by the Archbishop of Rhemes letters: he deceased Anno 923.
4. The fourth, Ceolnoth; consecrated Archbishop, Sept. 1. 830, and Anno 831 received the Pallium; he died Ann. 870. He was commonly called, The good Bishop.
5. The fifth, Eadberht, was the name of two Kings of Kent, and of one of Northumberland. Which of these coined this money, is uncertain. His name (as too many of those of our ancient Kings) is diversly written, as Edbert, Eadbert, &c. The Reverse (a Dragon) if yet it be a Dragon (v. Tab 1. Sect. 3.) was an ensign used by divers of the Northern Princes. This seems copied from one of Antiochus Epiphanes. The Romans, from Trajan’s conquering of the Dacians, used it also; but their’s was in the form of a great serpent, and not of an Imagination, as this is.
6. The 6th, Ecgbert, was the name also of divers Saxon Kings; one of Kent, one of Northumberland, one of Mercia; besides him of the West-Saxons, who reduced all the Kingdoms into one Monarchy. For whom this coin was made, is to me unknown: he seems placed between two crosses in imitation of some of the Eastern Emperors. The reverse seems to be only the name of the Mint-master. Uiborhtus is a name still in reputation in the North; it may be this Ecberht was the Northumbrian.
7. The seventh, Cuthred; whether the same with the former, is not known. I rather think him to be the West-Saxon, the brother of Ethelwerd, about the year 740; a valiant and victorious Prince. Sigebert seems to have been the Noble-person, who was commander of the place where this was coined.
8. The eighth, Alred, is Alhred King of Northumberland Anno 765: he reigned eight years, and, at York, was expelled his Kingdom Anno 774. On the reverse, Edwin, seems to have been a Nobleman.
9. The ninth, Eanred may either be Eanfrid or Eandred, both Kings of Northumberland. Eanfrid, eldest son of Ethelfrith, was expelled his country by Edwin; who had slain his father, and usurped the Kingdom Anno 617, but being slain by Ceadwalla and Penda, Eanfrid returned to the crown Anno 634, and was baptized, and built St. Peter’s Church at York (of which S. Edwin had laid the foundation) making Paulinus Bishop. Eadwin on the reverse, seems to have succeeded Eanfrid, after some years.
10. The tenth, ÆlfredAElfred , seems by the cypher or monogram on the reverse, to have been the King of Northumberland (the face not corresponding to that of Ælfred the West-Saxon). He murthered his true and lawful Prince Anno 765; and himself was expelled also. He is said to have been very learned: to shew which, it may be, he stamped that Monogram on the reverse: (after the example of divers Constantinopolitan Emperors, but not after those of the Franks;) which was begun by Charles the Great, probably because he could not write so much as his name, as Eginhart saith; and that, even in his old age, he vainly endeavoured to learn.
11. The eleventh, Edilred, seems to have been Ethelred King of the Northumbers, son of Mollo. After he had reigned four years, he was driven out, and Readuulf crowned; who being slain by the Danes at Alvethlic, Ethelred again succeeded. But carrying himself tyrannically, particularly murthering Oelf (Alfus) and Oelfwin, (Alfwin) sons of Alfwold, he was again expelled, and died in banishment. There was also another Ethelred, son of Eandred, a tributary King of the Northumbers; who was forced from his Kingdom in the fourth year of his reign: and, being again restored, he was slain four years after.
12. The twelfth Eandred, son of Eardulf, King of the Northumbers, reigned thirty years after Alfwold the Usurper: Afterwards, he submitted to Egbert.
13, 14. The thirteenth and fourteenth belong to Offa, the Mercian King (the reverse being the same in both, who seems to have been a Nobleman, and not a Mint-master.) Three of that name, An. 803. subscribed the Synod at Clovesho, and another succeeded S. Boniface in the Archbishoprick of Mentz. Offa having slain Beornred Ann. 557. reigned over the Mercians: a Prince he was of great courage and success in arms; but not just nor virtuous: for he basely murthered Ethelbriht King of the East-Angles (enticing him to his Palace that he might marry his daughter,) and seized upon his kingdom. He had much entercourse, and at length friendship also, with Charles the Great. He drew a Trench of wondrous length from sea to sea, separating the Mercians from the Welch; part whereof remains visible to this day.dyke He was the first who granted a perpetual Tax to the Pope out of every House in his Kingdom, at his being at Rome; and gave very bountifully, after his return, to the Clergy, by way of Penance for his Sins. He died An. 794.
15. The fifteenth Beornuulf, a valiant man, usurped the Kingdom of Mercia from Ceoluulf; and in his third year was overthrown by King Egbert at Ellendon, An. 823. He retired thence to the East-Angles (as part of his dominion, by the seisure of King Offa,) with the remainder of his army, and was there encounter’d, and slain: Whereupon the East-Angles surrender’d themselves to Egbert. The reverse I take to be Moneta.
16. The sixteenth, Ludican, succeeded Beornuulf in Mercia, An. 824. He reigned only two years: then, preparing to revenge the death of Beornuulf, his kinsman, upon the East-Angles, he was by them, with his five Consuls, surprized and slain. The reverse I understand not.
17. The seventeenth Berhtulf, An. 838. reigned in Mercia, but as feudatary to the West-Saxons: being much molested with the invasions of the Danes, he quitted his Kingdom, and retired to a private life. The reverse is Uulfhean; but who he was, is unknown.
18. The eighteenth, Burgred was by King Etheluulf made King of the Mercians, and married his daughter Ethelswith. To avoid the oppression of the Danes, he resigned his kingdom, and retired to Rome; where he lived in great reputation of Sanctity till his death. His Queen also enter’d into a Monastery at Pavia, and there died. The reverse is Vvhne, only the Mint-master. There are divers other of his Coins, but, differing only in the names of the Mint-masters, they seem not worthy to be inserted.
19. The nineteenth seems (however unlike the faces are on the Coins,) to have been of the same person. The reverse seems to be Moneta Uulffard; who he was, is not known.
20. The twentieth, is of Adulf or Aldulf, King of the East-Angles, son of Ethelwald’s brother; a very worthy and pious Prince, as appears by the reverse; and a great friend to venerable Bede: What Prisin means I know not. The reverse is remarkable, because his name is otherwise spell’d, than upon the Coins.
21. The one and twentieth is St. Edmond, King of the East-Angles, crowned at fourteen years old, at Buers, against his will: a very pious, valiant, and hopeful Prince. In the year 871. his kingdom was invaded by the Danes; against whom most valiantly fighting at Theotford, his army was routed, and himself taken and shot to death with arrows. Neither this, nor the two following, seem to have been Coined by him; but, as I conceive, by some of the West-Saxon Edmunds, who were all very much devoted to this holy martyr; tho’ they may also denote king Alfred. The reverse seems to be the name of the Mint-master.
22. The reverse of the two and twentieth, Oda Moneta; the place I understand not.
23. On the three and twentieth, Jomam me fecit, signifies, that Jomam was the Mint-master. Me fecit, is common upon the Coins of the Franks, in Gallia.
24. The twenty-fourth, ÆthelredAEthelred Rex Anglorum, seems not to have been one of the West-Saxons; the first of whom is commonly written ÆtheredAEthered ; and the second is neither in countenance nor habit like this. There are mentioned in our Histories, an Æthelred, successor to his brother Wulfred in Mercia: another, the son of Mollo; and another the son of Eandred, of whom we have already spoken. He is said to have married Leofrun, mother to Ethelbert, who was murthered by Offa; and to have reigned fifty years: little besides is known of him. The reverse seems to be a devout acknowledgment of his being sustained by the hand of Almighty God, who is Alpha and Omega. Who Holizard was, is not known. This seems to have been coined at Norwich.
25. The twenty-fifth is like this reverse, on both sides, but of what Prince unknown: it is read Tuna moneta Eaxceaster, as I conceive. I cannot make sense of the Reverse.
26. The twenty-sixth seems to be Sigfrid Moneta, a King of the East-Saxons; called also Suuefred, and denominated Sigfrid the good. He makes no great figure in our Annals. It is not usual to add Moneta to the King’s name. Concerning Euura, I can find nothing.
27. The twenty-seventh seems to have been King of the East-Saxons, son of Siger; a very comely and virtuous person, and exceedingly beloved of his people. Yet, devotion prevailing, after a short reign, he, with Kenred King of Mercia, went to Rome in the time of Pope Constantine, and there retired into a Monastery. Ibba on the reverse, seems to be some Nobleman.
28. The twenty-eighth, Edmund Rex, seems to have been one of the West-Saxon Edmunds. The reverse may be, Edmund Martyr.
29. The twenty-ninth I do not understand.
30. The thirtieth. For which of the Athelstans this was, I know not, as neither the reverse.
32. The thirty-second: I cannot find any mention of Heareth and Herred.
33. The thirty-third is imperfect.
34. The thirty-fourth seems not to be ÆlfredAElfred the West-Saxon, because the name is spell’d otherwise. Ounig is also unknown.
35. The thirty-fifth is to me unknown.
Notes upon Tab. I.
By Mr. THORESBY.
4. 4th, CEOLNOTH ARCHIEPiscopus. Reverse, DIALA MONETA DORObernenis.
5. 5th, EOTBEREHTVS. Reverse, a Dragon without any Inscription: Speed takes this for Ethelbert, the first Christian King of Kent: Sir Andrew Fountain, more probably, for Eadbert King of Northumberland, to which the smallness of the piece (being no bigger than the brass of those ages) inclines me.
6. 6th, ECGBERT the Northumbrian King. Reverse, VIBEREHTVS.
7. 7th, CVTHRED REX. Reverse, SIGEBERHT.
8. 8th, EALRED REX (NorthumbriæNorthumbriae .) Reverse, EADWINI.
9. 9th, EANRED REX (Nor.) Reverse, EADWINI.
10. 10th, AELRED REx (Nor.) the at the King’s Beard, stands for the Letter X, for which there is no room in its due place, as * * Notæ in Anglo-Sax. nummos, p.1.Dr. Wotton very well observes. Upon the Reverse, a Cypher or Monogram, which Mr. Edward Thwaits conjectures to be CIVITas NORTHVICum, and consequently ascribes the Coin to Alfred the Great; Norwich not being a place of any note in the time of the Northumbrian Alfred. (Mr. Hearn’s notes upon King Alfred’s life, p.164.)
11. 11th, EDILRED rex North. Reverse, MONNE.
12. 12th, EANRED REX (North.) Reverse, FORDRED.
13. 13th, OFFA REX (Merc.) Reverse, LVLLA.
14. 14th. Same Inscription.
15. 15th, BEORHWLF REX (Merc.) Reverse, MOHN.
16. 16th, LVDICA REX MErciorum. Reverse, WERBALD or BALDWER MONEta (or Monetarius.)
17. 17th, BERHTVLF REX (Merciorum.) Reverse, VILLEHEAH.
18. 18th, BVRGRED REX (Merc.) Reverse, WHNE or WINE MONETArius. Dr. Wotton inclines to have the E, after WIN in the reverse, to signify , the Earl’s money.
19. 19th, BVRGRED REX (Merc.) Reverse, VVLFEARD MONETArius.
20. 20th, AVDVLFIVS PRISIN (what the latter word signifies, I know not.) Reverse, VICTVRIA ADVLFO.
21. 21st, SC (Sanctus) EADMVND REx A. Reverse, WINEFeR MONETArius. Dr. Wotton makes it WINIF Regis MONETARius.
22. 22d, Reverse, ODO MONERLIA. – ODO MONEtarius Regis LINcoln, Dr. Wotton, p.9.
23. 23d, IOMA. Monetarius ME FECIT. These three were coined in memory of St. Edmund, King of the East Angles; and, I suppose, from the A in the Center, by King Alfred.
24. 24th, ÆTHELREDAETHELRED REX ANGLORum (An. 978.) Reverse, FOLCEARD MOneta NORTHumbrorum; as Mr. Walker in the latin Edition of King Alfred’s life; or Norwich, as Sir Andrew Fountain.
25. 25th, TVNA MOnetarius EAXEEST (Exeter.)
26. 26th, SYCFRADNII. Reverse, EVVRA MHO (monetarius).
27. 27th, OFFA. REX. Reverse, IBBA.
28. 28th, EADMVND REX (941.) Reverse, EADMVND Monetarius.
29. 29th, Unknown.
30. 30th, ÆTHELSTANAETHELSTAN REX (925.) Reverse, or WAVLLSIG, (Wulsig.) The Building is revers’d by the Engraver’s mistake.
31. 31st. What is supposed to refer to Oxford, is certainly King Osbright; only the Letters are to be read the contrary way Reverse EVNAARE. The Letters are very often thus misplaced in the brass pieces of that age; and sometimes, tho’ much more rarely, I have met with them so upon the Roman Coins of the Bass Empire.
32. 33. 32d and 33d. These seem imperfect.
34. 34th, ELFRED REX. Reverse, OYDIG MONetarius.
35. 35th, Seems to be of Edmund the Martyr, his name is inverted ; but what to make of the rest of the Letters, I know not. Reverse, ENSAM MOneta. perhaps for Evesham or Esham in Worcestershire.
Saxon Coins. Tab. II.
Notes upon Tab. II. by Mr. WALKER.
1. TO the first; there were two Ethelweards, one of the South, the other of the West-Saxons; this seems to be of the latter. In some writers he is called Ethelheardus. Little is remember’d of him; besides that when King Ina went to Rome, Anno 728, he assumed the government of the Kingdom, and fought a battle with Prince Oswald: with what success, is not mentioned. He is said to have governed fourteen years. On the reverse is Edmund, with a ligature of several letters, which cannot stand for St. Edmund the Martyr, since that happened not till Anno 870. After which time there was none, except Ethelbert, the son of Ætheluulf;AEtheluulf but he also was before the Martyrdom of St. Edmund. I rather think that cypher to signify some mark of the Monetarius.
2. The second Coenuulf, called commonly Kenulph, Kinulf, Ceoluulf. One of that name was adopted to be King of the Northumbers by Osric. Little more is known of him, than that he left his Kingdom, and became a Religious at Lindisfarn. Another was King of the West-Saxons, who reigned in great splendor and renown thirty one years. He was once worsted by the great Offa at Bensington (now Benson) in Oxfordshire. He was slain at Mereton in Surrey (by Kinheard, a seditious noble man, who had been banish’d by him) as he was with a Lady there, too much affected by him, about Anno 786. But this Coenuulf seems to have been a King of Mercia, a very worthy Prince. This Coin is of him; he was a very powerful and victorious, as well as pious Prince; and accounted one of the great Saxon Monarchs. He dispossess’d Ethelbertus Pren, King of Kent, and took him prisoner, but afterwards released him without ransome or other condition.
3. The third, Beormerick (by Speed called Brithric; for of that other name we find no mention in histories) was King of the West-Saxons, and succeeded Coenuulf. In the third year of his reign, was the first appearance of the Pirates upon these coasts. Pirates, I call them, because they were not owned by any Sovereign Prince till long after: but were a confluence of all sorts of thieves, who, by spoil and robbery, arrived to much wealth, and had the confidence to erect a kind of Community or Republick at a strong town, now called Wollin in Pomerania; whence they went out to rob, and laid up their prey there. Brihtrick banished Ecgberht, fearing both the goodness of his title, and his great abilities; yet dying childless, he left the Kingdom to him, An. 800. He was poysoned by his wife, the wicked Eadburga; tasting by chance of a Cup which she had prepared for one of his favourites. Upon his death, she fled, with all her treasures, into France; when, coming to Charles the Great, he ask’d her whom she desired to marry, himself or his son, there present? She foolishly answer’d, that if it were in her choice, she would marry his son, because he was the younger. Whereupon the Emperor told her, that if she had chosen himself, she should have married his son; but now, that she should retire to such a monastery. Whence also, for her incontinency, she was shortly turned out, and died begging.
4. The fourth, Ecgberht, partly by conquest, partly by the submission of other Kingdoms, united all into one dominion, calling it England; because, as it is said, himself, the King of the West-Saxons, was an Angle. It seems that Almighty God saw it necessary, for resisting the violence of the heathenish Pirates, to unite the intire force of all the Nation, yet little enough to defend themselves. He was a Prince (though but of small stature) of extraordinary wisdom and valour; for, being banished by Brithric, he apply’d himself to Charles the Great, who bestowed upon him a considerable post in his Army. And he was signally blessed with a numerous succession of most worthy Princes of his family and blood; which indeed was necessary for the preservation of the Nation, and its peace and unity.
5. The fifth, Cenedryd Regina, some suppose to have been wife to the great Offa, the Mercian, and to have reigned after his death; and that Eopa was one of her chief Ministers. But she rather seems to have been the eldest daughter of Kenuulf the Mercian: to whom also he left the care of Kenelm his son; whom, out of ambition, she caus’d to be murthered by his Educator. After his death, she reigned some time; and perhaps might be married to some of the West-Saxon Princes: As Eopa (a name frequent amongst the Saxons) was the Son of Ingilidus or Ingilfus, brother of Ina; and therefore probably might be in some great, perhaps the chief, employment under her, or else married to her: and for that reason placed upon her Coin; and not as a King, or a Bishop, though he hath a Cross in his hand. That she was a Mercian, appears by the letter M upon the reverse.
6, 7. The sixth and seventh are of King ÆthelwolfAEthelwolf , son and heir of Egbert, a peaceable and devout, yet very valiant, Prince. He first gave the tithe of his own Estate, and afterwards of the whole Kingdom, with the consent of the Nobility, to the maintenance of the Clergy.
He obtained a very great and glorious victory over the Danes at † † Perhaps Ockham, in Surrey.Aclea. He subdued also part of North-wales, upon the intreaty of Burhred, King of Mercia; and, out of great bounty and moderation, resigned it to him. After, setling the Kingdom, he had so much leisure, as to go to Rome (a journey mentioned with honour by Anastasius Bibliothecarius;) where he sojourned in very great esteem twelve months. In his return, he married Juditha, the beautiful daughter of Carolus Calvus; who, after Etheluulf’s death, was re-married to Baldwin ferreum-latus, Forester, and afterwards Count of Flanders. At his return, his undutiful, if not also rebellious son, Æthelbald,AEthelbald endeavoured to exclude him the Kingdom. Yet, notwithstanding the Nobility freely offered their assistance against Æthelbald; rather than engage in a war with his own people, he, in wonderful moderation, consented to divide the Kingdom, and contented himself with the worse half.
8. The eighth, Plegmund, is out of its place; yet not to be omitted, because on the reverse is the Pallium, or Archiepiscopal ornament received from the Pope, who thereby acknowledged and authorized such an one to the dignity of an Archbishop; and from this also, seems derived that which is now since, even till this time, the Arms of that Archbishoprick, though otherwise fashioned. This of Plegmund is not unlike the Pedum of the oriental Bishops.
9. The ninth. It is uncertain, for which ÆthelstanAEthelstan this was made, for there were divers. One was King of Kent, a very valiant and victorious Prince against the Danes (whether he was the son of Egbert or Ætheluulf, is not easily discovered from our authors; I rather think him the second son of Egbert.) Another was a Danish King, called Godrun, who was overcome by King Alfred at Edington, and afterwards Christen’d, and call’d at his baptism Æthelstan;AEthelstan of whom hereafter. But this seems most probably to have been the son and successor of Edward Senior. Regnald on the reverse, seems to have been the son of Guthferth, the son of Sihtric, a Danish King in Northumberland. Chron. Sax. An. 923. he took York; which he seems to have kept, till recover’d by Æthelstan; yea, though An. 924, it be said, that the Scots, and Regnald, and the son of Eadulf, and all the inhabitants of Northumberland, had chosen Edward Senior to be their Lord and father. That was only for fear of his arms, and they rebelled again presently after his death. I cannot but lament the misery of this Nation in those times. When (v.g.) in Northumberland, The Danish Invaders had one King, the Saxons another; and they had not their limits distinguished, but lived promiscuously one amongst another, so that here was always certain war, or uncertain peace. In the time of King Edmund, An. 945. Regnald was baptized; but relapsing (as it seems) he was by King Edmund driven out of his Kingdom. The Building, upon the reverse may perhaps signify some repairing of the Minster; and AC may also stand for Archiepiscopus. It is reported by divers of our Historians, that Ethelstan, in his march towards the North, seeing a great number of people going upon the way, demanded whither they went? and being answer’d that they went to visit the Shrine of St. John of Beverly, who wrought many miracles, he resolved to go thither also, and after having paid his devotions, vow’d, that if St. John would pray to God for victory over his enemies, he would redeem his knife (which he there presented and left) with somewhat of value; which he did at his return with victory. See Yorkshire at Beverley. And I have been inform’d, that about 1660, the people going to repair something in that Church of Beverley, light accidentally on the Coffin of St. John; upon the opening of which, they found the dried body of the Saint, and an old fashioned Knife and Sheath.
10. The tenth and eleventh are of the valiant, devout, and bountiful third son of King ÆtheluulfAEtheluulf . He fought many and sore battles against the Danes, most-what successfully. At Ashdown (near Lamborn in Barkshire) was a most terrible fight against the whole body of the Danish forces, divided into two wings; one under two of their Kings, the other led by their Earls. King ÆtheredAEthered divided his army likewise into two bodies; the one commanded by his brother ÆlfredAElfred , the other by himself. Ælfred was ordered to sustain their charge, whilst King Æthered heard publick Prayers; and though word was brought him that the battle was begun, and his brother fiercely charged, yet would he not rise from his Prayers till all was ended; and then, after a most terrible battle, he obtained an entire and glorious victory, wherein were slain one of their Kings, and most part of their Earls and chief Commanders. In another battle, this most worthy, valiant, and benign Prince, was mortally wounded, and died at Winborn in Dorsetshire.
11. In the eleventh, the name is Æthered, as it is also in the Testament of King Ælfredaelfred: the letters of the former reverse I cannot interpret; in the latter, is Osgut moneta. The other letters I understand not.
12. From the twelfth to the eighteenth, they are of the great Ælfred. The reverses of all, or most of them, seem to be Noblemen and Governours. The reverse of the twelfth, seems to be in honour of St. Cuthbert, one of the first, greatest, and most famous of our English Saints. His life is written both in prose and verse by Venerable Bede, who was born some time before Cuthbert died, so that his story was then fresh in memory. When King Ælfred was in his lowest estate, absconding in Athelney, St. Cuthbert is said to have appeared to him, and to his wife’s mother, declaring to them, that Almighty God was reconciled to him, and pardoned his offences (the chiefest whereof were the neglect of his duty, and too much addiction to hunting in his youth, as St. Neot warned him) and would suddenly give him a signal victory over his enemies (which happened at Edington in Wiltshire,) and would restore him to his Kingdom. The King, in gratitude, gave to the service of God, in St. Cuthbert’s Church, the Province called now the Bishoprick of Durham, and put his name upon his Coin: as he did likewise that of Uulfred,13. Count or chief governour of Hamshire, upon the thirteenth.
14. Of the fourteenth I understand neither side. The reverse seems to be Bernwaled; but it is unknown to me who he was. 15. So is also that of the fifteenth, only it was an eminent name amongst them; as was also Æthelstanaethelthelstan 16. on the sixteenth. 17. That upon the seventeenth, was likely the valiant and noble Viceroy of Mercia, married to the King’s daughter Ethelfleda, a woman of admirable wisdom, courage and zeal; in sum, a daughter worthy of such a father.
18. The eighteenth, is of Edward Senior, that victorious and glorious son and successor of King Ælfred; equal to his father in valour and military skill, but inferiour to him in learning and knowledge. His actions are sufficient for a volume. On his head is a close (or imperial) crown, which is born by few, if any other, besides the Kings of England. The reverse is Leofwine, or Lincoln.
23. The twenty-third, Beornwald. I rather read it Deorwald, i.e. Deirorum sylva, York-woulds; the chief Town whereof was Beverly. And the rather, 24.because of the twenty-fourth, Diora Moneta, which seems to be the money of the Deiri, or Yorkshire-men.
The rest of the Coins of this Prince are easily understood. The names upon the reverses seem to have been Noblemen or Governours. 25. The twenty-fifth is remarkable for the spelling, Jedword; the reverse is Arnerin on Eoferwic, i.e. York. 26. The twenty-sixth hath the reverse Othlric on Ring; which might be Ringhornan in Lancashire, a large Town, and one of the eight which was built by his sister Ethelflede. 27. Of the twenty-seventh, I do not understand the reverse.
28. The twenty-eighth is of that most famous and worthy King Æthelstan, the true progeny of such a father and grandfather. In his youth, his grandfather King Ælfred saw such a spirit and indoles in him, that he foretold, if it should please God that he came to the Crown, he would perform very great actions for the good of his country; and he made him also (I think the first that we find to have received that honour in this nation) a Knight, and gave him ornaments accordingly; the more likely, because Ælfred also order’d the robes and ceremonies of the Coronation. This Prince extended his Victories Northward, even into Scotland: Which countries, till his time, were never peaceably settled; because the two nations, the Saxons and Danes, were mingled together in their habitations; and yet, having several Kings and Laws, they could never be long in quiet. Upon the borders of Scotland, he fought one of the most terrible battles that ever was in England, against Anlaf King of Ireland, Constantine King of Scotland, and a very mighty and numerous Army. Wherein were said to be slain five Kings, and seven Earls or chief Commanders, besides vast numbers of inferior Officers and Soldiers. Authors say, that King Æthelstan’sAEthelstan valiant Chancellor and General Turketill, did with wonderful courage and strength, break through the enemies ranks, till he met with King Constantine, and slew him with his own hand. Others say, that Constantine was not slain, but his son. Turketill, after all his wars and greatness, resigning his estates and wealth, repaired to the Monastery of Croyland, and lived in it till his death. The reverse is Biorneard moneta Londonensis civitas or Holond ci. The former reading is the true.
29. The twenty-ninth is King Edmund, Brother, and not inferior in valour or counsel, to Æthelstan. He pursued the design of reducing all his subjects to perfect unity and peace, by extirpating those rebellious irreconcileable enemies, the Danes. In the beginning of his Reign, he cleared Mercia of them. For King Edward, seeing the Kingdom so much depopulated by those destructive wars, ever since the entrance of the Danes; did, upon promise and oath of fealty and obedience (as his father also had done amongst the East-Angles) permit these Danes to live amongst his natural Subjects; and chiefly in the great Towns: thinking, that because of their profession of arms and soldiery, they would better defend them than the Saxons, who were more industrious and skilful in labour and husbandry. The Danes also, having been themselves beaten and conquered by him, were very ready to promise obedience, peace, and loyalty. But the Saxons, by their labours growing rich, and the Danes retaining their former tyrannical and lazy dispositions, began to oppress and domineer over the natives. Edmund therefore, began, after Mercia, to reduce Northumberland, where remained the greatest number of them (for Edward himself had suppressed those in East-Anglia,) and to reduce those Northern counties into the form of Provinces: and committed Cumberland (as a Feud) to Malcolme King of Scotland. His zeal for justice cost this heroical Prince his life. For, celebrating the festival of St. Austin, and giving thanks for the Conversion of the nation; he spied amongst the Guests one Leof, a notable thief, whom he had before banished. The King’s spirit was so moved against him, that rising from the Table, he seized upon him, threw him to the ground, and was about to do some violence unto him. The Thief fearing what he had deserved, with a short dagger, which he concealed, wounded the King mortally; who died in a short time, to the great grief and affliction of his people. The reverse is very imperfect; but it may perhaps be Edward Moneta Theodford, or rather Eadmund Martyr, to whose Church he gave the Town called St. Edmund’s-bury.
30. The thirtieth is Eadred, who did not degenerate in the least from his father King Edward, or his brethren the precedent Kings. He compleated the reduction and settlement of the North; making Osulf the first Earl of it. The Scots voluntarily submitted, and swore Allegiance to him. An. 955. in the fifth year of his reign, and flower of his youth, he sicken’d, and died, and was exceedingly lamented of his subjects.
31. The thirty-first is Eadwig, son of King Edmund, who being come to age, received the Kingdom: so lovely a person, that he was named the Fair. His actions are variously reported by Historians; generally, they accuse him of voluptuousness, and neglect of his affairs: insomuch that a great part of the North applied themselves to his Brother Edgar, and set him up against Edwy, who with sorrow (as it is thought) sicken’d, and died, An. 958. Heriger on the reverse, seems to have been Mint-master.
32. The thirty-second, Scus Edwy, is here placed next to his names-sake: but it is a mistake, for it should be Scus Edwynus. There were two St. Edwins, both Northumbers; the first a Monk, the second a King. He laid the foundation of the Cathedral of York; and was slain by Penda and Cadwallin the Britain (to whom Penda, being taken Prisoner, had sworn submission;) Offred his son, and the whole Army, being dispersed. His head was brought to York-minster; and that whole Kingdom came into very great divisions and calamities. But this was not coined by him, nor do we know by whom: neither is it known to what King Badi, the Mint-master, belonged; only, that letter A is upon divers Coins of the West-Saxons, and therefore probably this also belonged to some of those Kings.
33. The thirty-third, Eadgar, son of King Edmund, peaceably enjoyed the fruits of the labours and dangers of his predecessors. A man admired by all, both foreigners and natives, for his great piety, justice, prudence, and industry in governing the Kingdom. Sine prælio omnia gubernavit prout ipse voluit; i.e. he govern’d all at his pleasure, and that without war. The reverse is, Leofsig Moneta Hamptonensis.
34. The thirty-fourth is of Eadward, son of King Edgar, by Ethelfleda the fair (called also Eneda,) Daughter of Duke Ordmear. He is much commended for a virtuous, well-disposed, and hopeful Prince; and such, the small remainders of his History do truly represent him to be. But, by order of his Step-mother Alfritha, to whom he was too obedient, he was murthered, to make way to the Throne for her son ÆthelredAEthelred . Edward was accounted a Saint and Martyr, because of the many miracles said to be done at his Tomb; which occasioned the removal of his body from Wereham to a more honourable place (Shaftesbury:) and the Murderer, repenting of that wicked action, spent the rest of her days in grief and severe penances. Who that Heremod on the reverse was, we know not.
35. The thirty-fifth is of Æthelred, son of Edgar by Alfritha, the only weak and slothful Prince of all the line of King Egbert; as endeavouring to govern his Kingdom, not by true justice and valour, as his predecessors had done, but by tricks, and (as they call it) Policy. First, he gave an opportunity to the Danes to renew their invasions; and then, negligently or unfortunately, opposing them, he brought the Kingdom into great poverty and calamity, and afterwards into subjection unto those ancient enemies and robbers of the country: by his laziness, losing all that his forefathers by their industry had acquired; as Historians say St. Dunstan foretold of him at his Baptism. Egbert began the advancement of the Kingdom, by reducing it into one Monarchy; his successors valiantly defended, and settled and augmented it, by subduing the Danes and all other enemies: Edgar enjoyed it in full peace, prosperity, and glory; and his son, this Æthelred, suffered it to run down again into a worse condition than ever. And indeed it would be strange to imagine so great a change in one man’s time; did it not appear that there was no cause of ruin left unpractised in his long reign, viz. his own negligence, cowardise, want of intelligence, and unskilfulness in war; and the great factions, enmities, and treasons of the nobility: the particulars whereof have filled the tedious relations of our Historians.
Notes upon Tab. II.
By Mr. THORESBY.
1. 1st, ÆTHELVEARDAETHELVEARD REX (Occident. Saxonum.) Reverse, EADMVND Monetarius.
2. 2nd, COENVVLF REX (Merciorum.) Reverse, LVL.
3. 3d, BEORMIRIC REX (Cœnwulf’sCoenwulf Successor.) Reverse, EELHEARD; whether nobleman or Minter, is uncertain.
4. 4th, ECGBEARHT REX (the Great.) Reverse, DEBLS MONETArius; the monogram makes EBORACum.
5. 5th, EOBA; but the head of Cynethrith, the Wife of Offa. Reverse, CYNETHRETH REGIN--M (in the Center) is for Merciorum.
6. 6th, AETHELVVLF REX. Reverse, BRITH MONETArius.
7. 7th, ÆtheLVVLF REx. Reverse, DVNN MONETArius.
8. 8th, PLEGMVND ARCHIEPiscopus; a Pastoral Staff. Reverse, ÆTHELVVLF MOnetarius.
9. 9th, ÆTHELSTANAETHELSTAN REX(the Monarch;) the Reverse is evidently EBORAC. A. (AEcclesia as Ecclesia is frequently writ in the barbarous Age.) Civitas REGNALD MONeta.
10. 10th, ETHELRED REX ANGLOrum. The Reverse seems to have been GodRIC MOneta On LVND or LIN.
11. 11th, ÆTHEREDAETHERED REX ANGLOrum. Reverse, OSGVT MOnetarius On WIN (Winchester).
12. 12th, ÆLFREDAELFRED alfred REX. Reverse, CVDBERHT.
13. 13th, AELFRED REX. Reverse, VVLFRED.
14. 14th, ÆLFRED. below ORSNA and above FORDA, as it is by Sir Andr. Fountain more correctly described; it seems design’d for Oxford, which was sometimes writ Oxnaford, as appears by the Saxon Chron. Ann. 912. Reverse, BERNFALED or BERNFALD Regis MOnetarius. (D and R being interwoven in the true draught of it.)
15. 15th, ELFRED REX. Reverse, LVDIG MONetarius.
16. 16th, Reverse, ETHELSTAN MOnetarius.
17. 17th, ÆTHERED (Æthelredaethelred , E and L in one) MOnetarius.
18. 18th, (W)ARD REX ANglorum. Reverse, LEFWINE ON LINK (Lincoln). This with the rest of the same form, I take to be Edward the Confessor’s (not Edward Sen.) and communicated them as such to Sir Andrew Fountain, who has afforded them his Sanction. The next is EADWEARD of a different Orthography; upon which it may not be amiss to observe, that as there were Three Edwards before the coming of the Normans, so there are as many material distinctions upon the Coins that bear the same name; which, in my slender opinion, may be thus best accommodated to the several Princes. Those with the Half-face and Scepter, to Edward Senior: Those with the full-face and arch’d Crown, to Edward the Confessor: And those without either Crown or Scepter, and indeed, for the most part, without any Effigies at all, to Edward the Martyr; which have also this further distinction in the form of the VV, not ; and they differ also in the Orthography, the latter part of the name being always WEARD not . By this distribution, each King has his distinct moneys; and without this, Edward the Martyr is wholly excluded: which is hard upon him who reigned five years in an Age wherein the Saxon moneys are most plentiful.
19. 19th, EADVVEARD REX. Reverse, EADMVND MONeta.
20. 20th, Same. Reverse, ÆTHERED MOneta.
21. 21st, Same. Reverse, WLFHEARD MONeta.
22. 22d, Same. Reverse, BEANSTAN (or BEAHSTAN Beeston.) MOneta.
23. 23d, Reverse, BEORNWALD MOneta.
24. 24th, Reverse, DIORA MONEta.
25. 25th, IED (W)ERD REEX. Reverse, ARNERIM ON EOFER (York) in which Northern parts the name is often by the vulgar pronounc’d Yedward to this day. Dr. Wotton reads the Reverse, ARN. Regis MONetarius EOFR . And so the next OÐLREgis MONetarius.
26. 26th, EADWEARD REX. Reverse, OÐeLRIc MONeta (or Monetarius), de , hodie Runckhorne, as Sir Andrew Fountain reads it.
27. 27th, EADWARD REx. Reverse, S (W)EART. MONetarius , Winchester, with PAX in the middle.
28. 28th, ÆTHELSTAN REX. Reverse, BIORNEARD MOneta LONDini CIvitatis.
29. 29th, EADMVND REX. Reverse, EADGAR MOneta de NORTHWIC.
30. 30th, EADRED REX. Reverse, VNBEIN MONETArius.
31. 31st, EADWIG REX. Reverse, HEREGER MO.
32. 32d, SC (Sanctus) EADWI. Reverse, BADI MONetarius.
33. 33d, EADGAR REX ANGLOrum. Reverse, LEOFSIC MOneta HAMTonensis.
34. 34th, EADWEARD REX. Reverse, HEREMOD Monetarius. '
35. 35th, ÆTHELRED REX ANGLOrum. Reverse, ODA MOnetarius de WELINGford: In the four quarters, is CRVX.
Saxon Coins. Tab. III.
Notes upon Tab. III. by Mr. WALKER.
1. ALL the first ten, are of CnutCanute (called the Great) the first Danish King of England. There are very many of his Coins extant. I have only described those wherein is some notable variety. Though Swane his father made divers conquests, and several countries as well as persons (preferring his activeness before Æthelred’s sloth, without regarding the Justice of the cause) submitted to him, and paid largely for his protection; yet was he never King, nor assumed (he nor his son) the title; till Edmund Ironside consented to divide the Kingdom with him. Amongst all these figures of Cnut, only one (the seventh) is with a crown; and that an open one contrary to that of the English Kings before him, and adorn’d with lilies; which would make me suspect that Coin to be counterfeit, were it not that our Historians say, that when he was young he wore his Crown at the great assemblies of the Nobility, so many times in the year; as was the custom, both here, and in France and Germany, and I think with all European Princes in those times. But one time, being mightily flattered by his Courtiers, he chanced to be upon the sea-banks, whither he commanded his chair to be brought; where, sitting down upon the beach in great Majesty, he told the sea, that that was his land, and the water his water; wherefore he commanded the sea to be content with its own chanel, and not to cover any part of the land. Which he had no sooner said, but the water dashed upon him: whereupon he told his flatterers, that they should hence-forward forbear all boasting of his power and greatness. After this, it is reported that he would never wear a Crown. Others say, that he never wore a Crown after his coronation; and that then also, at his coronation, presently after the Crown was set upon his head, he took it off, and fixed it upon the head of our Saviour crucified. The ordinary covering of his head was sometimes a Mitre (as fig. 6.) at other times a cap (as fig. 5.) and at other times a triangular covering, used after him by Andronicus the Eastern Emperor, and by St. Edward the Confessor. The reverse of the first, is Farthein Monet Eoforwic i.e. York; of the second, 2, 3.Sunolf; of the third, Crinam.
4. The fourth is Wulnoth. All coined at York.
5. The fifth is Leodmer, and seems to have been coined at Raculfminster, now Reculver.
6. The sixth hath Luffwine, or Dover.
7. The seventh hath Wulfric on Lunden.
8. The eighth is Selwi, at Theoford.
9. The ninth is Outhgrim, at York.
10. The tenth is CnutCanute, aged, with a Diadem about his head. The reverse is Nodwin Moneta. The name of the place I cannot read. In his younger years, he spared no labour, nor any art, just or unjust, oppression or murder; to acquire and settle the Kingdom to himself and Posterity. Which being performed, as well as he could, he endeavoured to act more justly and plausibly, that he might retain the obedience of the people, which he had so unjustly gotten. Yet not long before his death, he dispossessed Olavus King of Norway of his dominion, about An. 1029.
11. The eleventh is of Harold, Cnut’s second son, called for his swiftness Hares-foot. To his eldest son Suane, suspected to be none of his own, Cnut gave the Kingdom of Norway: to Harold, his second son (by foreign writers also called a Bastard) the Kingdom of England: and to Hardacnut, his son by Emma, he gave Denmark. Harold’s Reign was short, about four years, and employed more in endeavouring to settle his title, than in performing any worthy action. The reverse is, Godric at Theotford.
12. The twelfth is of the same, with a Diadem about his Helmet. The reverse is, Sliwine on Theodford.
13. The thirteenth is of Harthacnut. He reign’d about two years, and died suddenly at a great feast in Lambeth. Little of note is mention’d of him, besides that he was very affectionate to his mother’s children; and that he loved good eating, making four meals a day. The reverse is Elnwine on Wice. — perhaps Worcester.
14. The fourteenth is of St. Edward the Confessor; of whom there are very many Coins still extant. I have presented only those of most variety. This represents him as a young man sitting with a staff or scepter (which amongst the Romans was the Hasta pura and Sceptrum, sometimes made of Ivory, and many times with an Eagle on the top of it; instead of which, our Kings used commonly a Cross, tho’ not always of the same fashion; sometimes also a Lily:) In his left hand, a globe, with a cross fasten’d in it. This was used only by Christian Emperors and Kings, as intimating that they had that power through the virtue of the Cross, or Passion, of our Saviour. The Pagan Roman Emperors used rather a stern or oar fasten’d to a globe, showing that they steer’d the world; not expressing whence they receiv’d that power. Whereas Suidas saith of Justinian, that in his left hand he carried a globe with a cross upon it; signifying, that by faith in the Cross of Christ he was advanced to be Lord of the world, i.e: that he obtained that dominion by Christ crucified, who was now made Lord of Lords, and Prince over the Kings of the earth. This Prince was son to King ÆthelredAEthelred ; so that in him, to the great joy of the English (the Danish Government being extinguished) the noble ancient Saxon Line was restored. He was a Prince of very great justice, devotion, mildness, bounty, and many other excellent virtues. And indeed, several things reported to his prejudice, seem capable of a rational Apology; as the hard usage of his mother Emma, and his wife Edith. Neither wanted he Courage, or diligence: but the factions of the great nobility, and the ambition of Earl Godwin, required a more severe, if not austere, Government. The reverse, Othgrim on Efrwic, I conceive to be York.
15. The fifteenth is of the same Edward, but with an unusual Ornament upon his head: in his hand, a scepter ending in a Lily. The reverse perhaps is Ailmer on Scrobe. — coined at Shrowesbury.
16. The sixteenth is of the same, with an Imperial or close crown: his scepter hath three pearls cross-wise. On the reverse, is a Cross between four martlets, I suppose; which was the original or first of those Arms they call the Arms of the West-Saxons (though Arms and Scutcheons, &c. are of a later invention,) and are now of the City of London, and of divers other places: But they are, in several particulars, alter’d from what they were in his time; perhaps for the greater beauty. The reverse of the sixteenth is imperfect. That of the seventeenth,17. I cannot read: perhaps, it is the same with that of the nineteenth.
18. Of the eighteenth, the reverse is Walter on Eoferwick.
19. The nineteenth is Edward, with a crown Imperial, and Scepter; on it, a cross like that of an Archbishop. The Reverse is, Drintmer on Wal. perhaps Wallingford.
20. The twentieth is Edward, with a crown pearled: the reverse maybe — dinnit on Leicester.
21. The twenty-first hath another unusual ornament on his head: the reverse is Sietmait on Sutho — perhaps some place in Suthfolk.
22. The twenty-second is of Harold, a younger son of Earl Godwin. How he gain’d the Kingdom, whilst the rightful Heir Edgar was alive, except by force and power, I know not. Some say, King Edward bequeath’d it to him; conceiving Edgar not so able to govern: others, that he was chosen by the consent of the Nobility; but this is not probable. But his father as long as he lived had used all means, just and unjust, to get the great offices of command into his hands, which, coming after his death to Harold, the best and worthiest of his children, he made use of accordingly. Before his reign, he had shewed himself very valiant, diligent, and loyal also: at least more than his brethren: and, as soon as crown’d, he endeavour’d by all prudent and fitting means to obtain the favour of the people. But his reign lasted not long, and was taken up with wars and troubles: At last, fighting rashly and indiscreetly with William Duke of Normandy, he was slain with two of his brethren; the third being killed before in a battle near York. And so ended the great power and ambition of Earl Godwin and his family: as also of the Kingdom of the Saxons.
23. From the twenty-third to the twenty-eighth, is Sancti Petri moneta; most of them coined at York, yet with several stamps. I am in great doubt, whether these were coined for Peter-pence (or Romescot) which was an annual tax of a penny each houshold; given for the West-Saxon Kingdom by King Ina, about Anno 720; and for Mercia by King Offa; and paid at the festival of S. Petri ad vincula: At first, as some say, for the education of Saxon Scholars at Rome; but afterwards, as a Grant for the use of the Pope himself, not then so well provided as afterwards. (The like tax, of three half-pence and a sieve of oats for each family, was about the same time given by the Polonians, upon the same reasons.) Or it may be, it was the ordinary money coined by the Archbishop, whose famous Cathedral was St. Peter’s. For amongst the great number of such coins, I have seen very few (one is, the 26th in this table) stamped other where. Besides, there is such great variety in the stamps, that very many (more than seem to be necessary for that payment) must needs have been coin’d: nor is the sword a proper symbol for St. Peter.
26. The twenty-sixth. What the word in the reverse signifies, whether the name of a person or place, I know not.
28, 29, The twenty-eighth, and twenty-ninth, St. Neglino, I do not understand, as neither the thirtieth.
30. These coins of St. Peter, with the three following, and divers others scattered in the other plates, were found at Harkirk in the parish of Sephton in Lancashire, as they were digging for a burying-place; and were all afterwards engraved and printed in one large sheet: but having seen many of the same, it was not fitting to omit them here.
31. The thirty-first is of Berengarius, King of Italy, in Charles the Great’s time. The reverse shews the building of some church; but what church we know not: the words Christiana Religio shew also so much.
32. The thirty-second is Ludovicus Pius. The reverse much the same.
33. The thirty-third is of Carlus Magnus; and informs us of his true name, which was not Carolus from Charus or Carus; but Carlus, in the Northern languages signifying a man, vir, or a strong man. Metullo was one of the coining places in France, in his time.
34. The thirty-fourth is Anlaf Cyning; a name very troublesome about the times of ÆthelstanAEthelstan , and after. There seem to have been two of them; one, King of Ireland; another, of some part of Northumberland. V. Tab. II. c. 28. What that not unelegant figure in the midst implies, as also that in the reverse, except it be the front of some church, I cannot conceive; as neither, who that Farhin or Farning was. I much doubted, why Anlaf a Pagan should stamp a church with crosses upon his coin; till Mr. Charleton shewed me on a coin of Sihtric (Anlaf’s father) a Christian, the very same figures; the Mint-master for haste, or some other reason, making use of the same stamp.
35. The thirty-fifth is of the unfortunate ÆthelredAEthelred , and is mentioned here, because coined by Earl Godwin in Kent. Whence appears what I hinted before, that the Nobility and Governors put their names upon the coins; and not only the Mint-masters, as was more frequent in France.
36. The thirty-sixth is of Harold, the son of Godwin. The reverse is Brunstan on Lot fecit. Brunstan seems to have been only a Mint-master; where Lot is, I know not.
37. The thirty-seventh is of Harold son of Cnut.canute The reverse is Leofwine on Brightstoll.
38. The thirty-eighth hath the reverse Brintanmere on Wallingford, as I conceive. These three by misfortune were misplaced, yet fit to be known because of the places of their stamping.
Notes upon Tab. III.
By Mr. THORESBY.
1. 1st, CNVT REX ANGLorum.
Reverse, FARÐEIN MOnetarius de EOFerwick (York.)
2. 2d, Reverse. SVNOLF MOnetarius de EOFerwick.
3. 3d, Reverse, CRINAN MOnetarius de EOFeRwick.
4. 4th, CNVT. Reverse, WvLNOTH MOnetarius de EOFeRWick.
5. 5th, CNVT REX. Reverse, LEODMER ON RINCofa (Runcofam, built by Ethelfleda, Sax. Chron. Anno 913.)
6. 6th, CNVT REX ANGLorum. Reverse, LVFFWIN ON DOF (Dover.)
7. 7th, CNVT REX ANGLORVM. Reverse, WVLFRIC ON LVNDene (London.)
8. 8th, Reverse, SELWIN ON THEOTFOrd (Thetford.)
9. 9th, Reverse, OVTHGRIM MOnetarius de EOFerwick.
10. 10th, CNVT REX. Reverse, NODWIN MONetarius de IIRAT.
11. 11th, HAROLD REX ANGLorum. Reverse, GOTHRIC ON THEOTFord, with PAX in the Center.
12. 12th, HAROLD REEX Anglorum. Reverse, SLEWINE ON THEODford.
13. 13th, HARTHACNVT REX. Reverse, ELWINE ON WIGE (Worcester.)
14. 14th, EDWARD reX ANGLORum. Reverse, OTHGRIM ON EFeRWIc (York.)
15. 15th, EDWErD REX. Reverse, ÆLMER ON SCROBE (Shrewsbury.)
16. 16th, EADWARd reX ANGLOrum. Reverse, BRANd on Walingford.
17. 17th, BRINTRIL ON WALIngford.
18. 18th, EADWEARD REX. Reverse, WALTER on EO .
19. 19th. EADWARD REX. Reverse, DRINTMER ON WAL .
20. 20th, EADWaRD REX. ANGLOrum. Reverse, RDIN NIT (or rather BRIN) ON LEIcester.
22. 22d, HAROLD REX. Reverse, SWAFA ON LINCOLN.
23. 23d, SCI (Sancti.) PETRI. Reverse, EBORACEnsis or EBORACEnsium CIVitas.
24. 24th, SCI. PETRI. Moneta. Reverse, EBORACEns: CIVitas.
25. 25th, SCI. PETRI MOneta. Reverse, EBORACEns: CIVitas.
26. 26th, SCI. PETrI MOneta. Reverse, ERIVHT or ERMIT M.
27. 27th, SCI. PETRI. MOneta. Reverse, EBORACEns: cIvitas. The two next are, doubtless, design’d by the bungling minters of those ages, for the same Inscriptions.
29. 29th, Same mistake. Reverse, EBORAcens: CIFE for CIVEtas. by change of V consonant into F, as is frequent in other languages (Mr Lhuyd’s comparative Etymol. in his Arch. Brit.)
30. 30th, As engraved, I can make nothing of it.
31. 31st, BERENGARIVS REX. Reverse, CHRISTIANA RELIGIO.
32. 32d, HLVDOVVICVS IMPerator. I have one of them, and the last three letters are very distinctly IMP. not IRE, as engraved before. Reverse, XIPSTIANA RELIGIO.
33. 33d, CARLVS REX FRancorum. Reverse, METXVLLO.
34. 34th, ANLAF CVNINC (King.) Reverse, FARNAN MONETA, Dr. Wotton supposes this coined at Farne-Island, when Anlaf was baptized, and this to be the book with seven Seals, &c.
35. AETHELRAED ethelred 35th, ÆTHELRÆD REX ANGLOrum. Reverse, GODWINE MOneta (Cantwari,) the people of Kent.
36. 36th, HAROLD REX. Reverse, BRVNNSTAN ON LOTF; I suppose for .
37. 37th, HAROLD REX ANGLorum. Reverse, LEOFWINE ON (Bristow.)
38. 38th, BRINTNÆR (or MÆR) ON : in the center of each is PAX.
Saxon Coins. Tab. IV.
Notes upon Tab. IV. by Mr. WALKER.
IN this plate are collected divers unknown coins, yet such as I conceive to have belonged to these Nations: some also of former Kings are repeated; but for the most part the faces, and in all, the reverses, are divers. They are added here, in hopes that it may not be ungrateful to them who have the curiosity to collect these rarities, to have the more assistance for the understanding of them.
1. The first is of the unfortunate King Æthelred, the face unlike the ordinary one; the reverse CRVX. between the four branches of the cross, Winstan moneta on Winchester.
2. The second, a spread Eagle, Anlaf cyning. The reverse, Æthelred minetric. which seems to be Mint-master.
3. The third is Eadmuud Rex. Reverse, Reingrim moneta. Which Edmund this was, is uncertain. Besides the son of Edward Sen. (of whom we have spoken before, Tab. II, c.29.) there is none famous in our Histories but Edmund sirnamed Ironside, the valiant son of King Æthelred, and St. Edmund King of the East-Angles. Edmund Ironside reigned so short a time, that there are very few, if any, coins extant of him; those which may probably be thought his, are in this Table. He was a very bold indefatigable Soldier, but unfortunate; being in most of his enterprises betrayed or defeated by the Traitor Edric. Who, being a man of a mean family, got by his insinuations into power; of a crafty wit, and fair-spoken tongue: he exceeded all men living of those times in malice and treachery, in pride and cruelty. His brother Agelmer was the father of Wulnoth, the father of Earl Godwin.
4. The fourth is Ethelstan Rex Anglorum. Reverse, Hegenredes moneta on Deorabi. Coined at Darby.
5. The fifth is another face of King Ethelred. Reverse, Watlfreth moneta Gippeswic. Ipswich the place of coining it.
6. The sixth is Eadmund. Reverse, Boin LYG. Who it was, I know not.
7. The seventh seems to be of Coenuulf, King of the West-Saxons. Of whom see Tab. II. c.2. of the Northumbers. I know not where to begin to read the letters on the reverse; nor do I understand them.
8. The eighth is Eadred Rex. The reverse, Manna moneta. This face resembles not that in Tab. II. c.30.
9. 11. 12. 37. The ninth, eleventh, twelfth, and thirty-seventh, seem to be of the ancient Irish Kings, the only ones that I ever saw. The letters are very unusual, and therefore difficult to be read or understood. The ninth, I conjecture to be Dida Medino. The reverse, two hands in the opposite angles of a cross. The word seems to be Iniconeic, a name (as I am inform’d) still extant in Ireland.
10. The tenth, if it be not Offa, I know not who it is.
11. The eleventh is of an Irish Prince (I conceive) by the words Midino on the ninth coin. Midini upon this and the twelfth, seems to refer or belong to Midia, now called Meath, one of the divisions and countreys in Ireland.
13. Lundoniae AElfred alfred The thirteenth is Eadgar Rex. Reverse, Æthered moneta Lundoniæ. It was probably one of the Edwards, but the effigies being like none of the other, I know not of whom it is.
14. The fourteenth, Dmo, unless it be one of the Edmonds, I cannot guess at it; but the countenance, cloaths, &c. are not like any of the other. The reverse also is equally unknown.
15. The fifteenth, I do not understand.
16. The sixteenth is Coenuulf a Mercian; but not like any of those already described. The reverse, Ceolheard, I understand not.
17. The seventeenth is set down, because of the beauty and unusualness of the reverse.
18. The eighteenth. There were divers Æthelstans: one was the son either of Egbert or Ætheluulf, and was King of Kent; another was the son of Edward Sen. of whom before: the third was a Danish King called Gormund, who being overcome by Ælfred at the battle of Eddington, submitted himself and his army, either to embrace the Christian Religion or depart the whole Countrey. Himself with thirty of his chiefest Commanders were baptized, with a great part of the Army; the rest quitted the Realm. King Ælfred was his Godfather, and call’d him Æthelstan, and gave him the Kingdom of the East-Angles, then very much dispeopled by the cruel wars. I take this coin to be of him; and the rather, because the reverse seems to be Danish language, and not understood by me.
19. The nineteenth is of Edmond: I should attribute it to the valiant Ironside, if I could find others of his coins; but his reign was short and troublesom.
20. The twentieth is of St. Edward the Confessor; published here, because by the reverse it should seem, what I have read also, that he either founded or re-edified the great Church of St. Edmond at Bury.
21. The twenty-first is ÆthelnothAEthelnoth on Snotenegham (Nottingham.) Who is meant by it, I know not; but it is of no value, since both sides are the same.
22.The twenty-second seems to be of the great ÆthelstanAEthelstan ; what [to Brie] means, I know not †† Perhaps, Totius
Sim. Dun. p.24.. The reverse is Regnald moneta Eoferwic.
23.The twenty-third, I believe, was of Ethelstan King of Kent, a very valiant Prince, and fortunate against the Danes: he died young.Seld. Tit. Hon. p.606. The reverse is Berharhed on; but no place named.
24.The twenty-fourth, is of King Edgar, of whom we have spoken before. The reverse is Wermod moneta.
See Mr. Thoresby’s own Note. The twenty-fifth, Sci Canuti. This rare coin was lent us by that ingenious and worthy Gentleman Mr. Ralph Thoresby; which he saith was sent him out of Swedeland; being found in a vault in Juitland. The reverse in a cross IHC (Jesus) INRI (Jesus Nazarenus Rex JudæorumJudaeorum ). A and D are conjectured to be Anglia and Dania: that King (as Saxo Grammaticus, Hist. lib. lxii. noteth) looking upon his pretensions to the Crown of England as just as any of his Predecessors, was resolved to attempt the regaining of it.
26. The twenty-sixth, I cannot interpret.
27. The twenty-seventh is also of Ethelstan, probably King of Kent; because of his helmet made after an antique fashion, but useful; covering the nape of the neck, and a bar descending as low as his nose: he hath also a gorget. The reverse, Smala, I take to be the name of the Mint-master.
28. The twenty-eighth is Wiglaf. After that Beornuulf was slain by the East-Angles, and Ludican by Egbert; This Wiglaf obtained (I know not how) the Mercian Kingdom. But he being also overcome by Egbert, resigned, and Egbert restored it to him under a certain tribute; and so he reign’d thirteen years. Little is recorded of him. Redward was Mint-master.
29. The twenty-ninth is Sihtric Rex DHGH. What these letters signify, is unknown to me. He was a Danish King in Northumberland, and was, for his pride and tyranny, very much hated of his neighbours. To strengthen himself, he desired to marry Edith the sister of the great Æthelstan; who would not consent, till he promised to become Christian, as he did, and was baptized, but died not long after. His two sons, because they would not turn Christians, fled their country. Gudferth went into Scotland, and Anlaf into Ireland; where they wrought all the mischief they could against the English, till Æthelstan utterly vanquished them both. V. Tab. II. c. 9. The reverse is Colbrand. Why may not this be that Colbrand, in the Romance of Guy of Warwick, mentioned by Knighton and others to have combated, and been vanquish’d by, that famous Earl? whose valour deserved better, than to have been discredited by those fabulous, if not ridiculous, Exaggerations. However, it appears by this coin, that those persons were Contemporaries, in the time of King Æthelstan, and of a Danish King (whom the fable miscalls) enemy for a long time to Æthelstan. The two combatants also seem to have been very eminent for their valour and employments. Upon these true considerations (according to the custom of the times about the holy war) some ill-employ’d persons raised that sorry childish fable.
30. The thirtieth is of Æthelstan; to brie I understand not. The reverse, Pauls moneta Leiec. seems to imply its being coined at Leicester.
31. The thirty-first, I read Eadred Rex. The reverse, Garuurd moneta.
32. The thirty-second, Eadward Rex. The reverse, Uulfgar, under the front of a church, probably Westminster-Abby.
33. The thirty-third is Berthulf Rex, of the Mercians; whom we have mentioned before. The reverse is Byrnuuald.
34. The thirty-fourth is Anlaf Rex to do; the meaning unknown. The reverse is Radulf, under such a plant as is also in a coin of St. Edward’s.
35. The thirty-fifth is a very old face; if of any, I suppose it must be of St. Edward. The reverse is Thorr on Eoferwic.
36. The † † See Mr. Thoresby’s own Note.thirty-sixth, St. Neglin. I have already declared that I knew not who he was.
37. The thirty-seventh seems to be of an Irish Prince; to me not legible.
38. The thirty-eighth is Edwin Rex. This seems to have been the glorious King of the Northumbers; who, being forced out of his country by a cruel and tyrannical Usurper, betook himself to Redwald King of the East-Angles; who also, after many promises and threats, agreed to deliver him up to his enemy. At which time the worthy Edwin was comforted by a messenger from God, promising him safety, his Kingdom, &c. and, laying his right hand upon Edwin’s head, bad him remember that sign; which when it came to pass, he should receive the Gospel. This, Edwin faithfully promised, and afterwards faithfully performed, as may be read in Venerable Bede in his second book of the Eccl. History, which, in great part, is concerning this valiant, victorious, religious Prince. His conversion fell out in the year of Christ 627. The reverse is Sefwel on Eoferwic.
39. The thirty-ninth hath a coronet upon his helmet. Æthel.AEthel Rex may either be Ethelred, Ethelwolf, or Ethelstan; though the face represents none of them. The reverse is not legible.
40. The fortieth is taken out of Dr. Plot’s history of Oxfordshire; it was found in digging the works at Oxford, and is, or not long since was, in the possession of Sir John Holman. It is supposed to be the gold given by St. Edward the Confessor at his curing the ScrophulæScrophulae , or the Kings-Evil. It is worth noting that it hath upon it the figure of a woman veiled (not unlike a Nun;) whether of the Blessed Virgin, or some other holy woman, I cannot determine. But it seems much more proper for that function, than that now used of an Angel; which was taken from the French.
It Mr. Walker’s account, from whom he had the Coins.remains that we declare whence we received these coins. HA were such as were found in making a burial-place at Harkirk in the Parish of Sephton in Lancashire.
JS, is John Speed in his Chronicle; which he copied out of Sir John Cotton’s store in his famous library.
WC, are those which were, with great care, judgment, and expence, collected by that most worthy and ingenious treasurer of ancient learning, Mr. William Charleton; whose kindness deserves a greater testimony, than this place permits.
RT, is Mr. Ralph Thoresby, of Leeds in Yorkshire; who by his great industry hath augmented his father’s considerable stock of this sort of knowledge.
CH, is Mr. Charles Hills, very well known by his eminent skill in all natural and also antique learning.
DP, is Dr Plot, well known every where; DT Dr. Trumball; WK is Will. Kingsley Esq; of Canterbury. Divers also of them are in our own possession.
Notes upon Tab. IV.
By Mr. THORESBY.
1. 1st, ETHELRED REX AIGISIA, which seems to be designed for REX ANGLOrum, and to be either the Engraver’s or Minter’s mistake. Reverse, WINSTAN MOnetarius de WIN (Winchester) CRVX.
2. 2. ANLAF CVNVN GIT. Reverse, ATHELFERD MINETRIL or MINET REGis, as Dr. Wotton reads it. I rather take the bird for a Raven, than an Eagle, because it was the celebrated Ensign of the Danes; as Mr. Hearne in his notes upon King Alfred’s life (p.61.) very probably conjectures.
3. 3d, EADMVND REX (PT before the X seem redundant.) Reverse, REINGRIM MONETArius.
4. 4th, ÆTHELREDAETHELRED REX ANGLOrum. Reverse, WALTFERTH MOnetarius de GYPES (Ipswich) or GYPESlip, (Islip) as Dr. Wotton. This piece is mine; and I cannot but observe, that there are more apparent signs of the Piety of this King upon his moneys, than of most of the other Saxon Kings upon theirs; as here, a hand (to denote the divine Providence) betwixt Alpha and Omega, and upon others CRVX. So that he seems to deserve a better Character than Mr. O. W. (too much influenced by the Monkish Historians of those ages) is pleased to afford him in Tab. III n. 35.
5. 5th, EDELSAN REX AXORUM for Anglorum, or REx sAXONVM (Orientalium) as an ingenious Author reads it; but upon the Coin it self it is strictly RVM. Reverse, HEGENREDES MOnetarius ON DEORABYI or BYE (Darby.)
6. 6th, EADMVND the contrary way. Reverse, BOINLVC or BOI. Monetarius, LV as Dr. Wotton.
7. 7th, COENWLF REX. Reverse seems to be PODELT or POOEL, whence the family of Pool or Powel.
8. 8th, EADRED REX, Reverse, MANNA MONETA.
10. 10th, OFFA REX. Reverse, EOBA, a nobleman.
13. 13th, EADGAR REX. Reverse, ÆTHEREDAETHERED MONETA LVN (London.)
15. 15th, SC (Sancti) EADI, St. Edmond, by King Alfred or some succeeding King. Reverse seems to be CIRV MOneta, , Church-money; or , Chirbury, built by Ethelfleda, Queen of the Mercians.
16. 16th, COENVVLF REX Merciorum. Reverse, CEOLHEARD.
17. 17th, EADVVEARD REX. Reverse, HEREMOD, a nobleman, or minter.
18. 18th, ÆTHELSTANaethelstan REX, the averse way. Reverse, ABERTEE MOneta EOferwick, York; where there is a street to this day which bears his Danish name, Godrun- (as in the Saxon Chron.) or Gudrum-gate.
19. 19th, EADMVND REX. Reverse, perhaps, EVGEAN ON EII or EN. Dr. Wotton reads it CVRCA MONETarius, and deduces thence the name of Croke.
20. 20th, EADWEARD REX. Reverse, EADMVND.
21. 21st, ETHELNOTH ON SNOTENGHAM (Nottingham;) the Original is a very beautiful Coin, but, by some accident, both sides are alike; so that there is no King’s name: tho’ perhaps none was ever design’d, but Ethelnoth’s only, who was a nobleman, deservedly celebrated in the Saxon Chronicle for his services against the Danes, Anno 894. In which Century, we find the names of two Archbishops Ceolnoth and Plegmund, upon their respective moneys, whose Example possibly this noble man imitated, or might have the like Privilege granted him by Royal Authority. This I am the rather induced to believe, because the coin is on both sides one of the fairest minted pieces of those ages.
22. 22d, ETHELSTAN REX TOtius BRITanniæbritanniae. Reverse, REGNALD MOneta EFORWIC (York.) I wonder a person so curious as Mr. O. W. should be at a loss as to the meaning of TO BRIT. Dec. Script. p.24. Simeon Dunelmensis, speaking of this Monarch, saith, primusque regum, totius Britanniæ adeptus est imperium, he was the first King of all Britain: and lest this should be thought the language only of his own age (Anno 1160) the learnedTit. of Hon. p.606. Selden puts it out of doubt, that this title was used in those ages, by an Original Charter, wherein one of the Saxon Kings (Anno 730) subscribes himself Rex Britanniæ.
23. 23d, ETHELSTAN (Son of Edward Senior, as Sir Andrew Fountain apprehends) REX. Reverse, BERNARHDE ON. but no place mentioned. Dr. Wotton makes the three last Letters to signify On .
24. 24th, EADGAR REX, Reverse, DVRMOD MONEtarius. Our common Chroniclers are so taken up with this King’s Title of the Peaceable, that they almost wholly wave his wars; but it appears by a certain Charter of his (in the Introduction to Ireland, tit. Oustmanni) that he conquered the greatest part of Ireland, with her most noble city, Dublin. Of which noted passage, this rare coin seems to be a Confirmation: it being found in digging amongst some ancient Ruins at Dublin, from whence it was sent me under the notion of an Irish coin; and so it may be in some respect, though of our British Monarch. During whose Wars it seems to have been coin’d there; Durmod, or Dermot, being a name familiarly known to those that are conversant in the Irish Annals.
25. 25th, Of St. Canntus was found under-ground in Gotland, an Island in the Baltick Sea, and was sent me by a friend from Sweden. It is inscribed CI. CAN (Sancti Canuti) —ANG. (Angliæ)angliae that King looking upon his pretensions to the Crown of England to be as just as the greatest of his Predecessors. Reverse, within a cross A and D, for Anglia and Dania, with IHC (Jesus) and INRI. the Initials of Pilate’s Inscription. This name is written NVT in all the Coins found in England; but it is written CANVTVS, in old latin Gothic Characters, upon his Coffin found in a Vault when St. Canutus’s Church in Ottensee was repaired, Anno 1582.
26. The 26th is not strictly engraved; having on one side EBORACI though rudely performed; the other side I cannot unriddle, though by the hand it may be suppos’d to be Ethelred’s.
27. 27th, ÆTHELSTANAETHELSTAN REX (Cantii.) Reverse, SMALA MONETArius, a cross Crosslet, as it is called in Heraldry. In answer to Dr. Wotton’s Query, the Coin it self has both and S before MALA.
28. 28th, WIGLAF REX Merciorum. Reverse, REDMAN. Monetarius.
29. 29th, SIHTRIC REX DHGH (but these four letters are not intelligible by me.) Reverse, COLBRAND.PIODGH, perhaps PEONHO, Pen in Somersetshire, a place noted for the Danish affairs. Saxon Chronicle.
30. 30th, ÆTHELSTAN REX. TOtius BRItanniE. Reverse; PAVLS MONETarius LEICester.
31. 31st, EADRED REX. Reverse, SARVVARD MONETarius.
32. 32d, EADWEARD REX, Reverse, WLFGAR.
33. 33d, BERHTVLF REX (Merciorum.) Reverse, BVRNVVALD.
34. 34th, ANLAF REX TOD , perhaps design’d for NORD (Northumberland.) Reverse, RADVLF.
35. 35th, ED (W) AERD REX. Reverse, THORR ON EOFER (W) i. c. York. By Domesday-book it appears, that Torr or Thor, one of the Saxon Barons, had a vast estate in these Northern parts (particularly in Richmondshire) in the time of Edward the Confessor; of which being dispossessed by that Conqueror, most of it lay waste at the time of that memorable Survey: The place of his Residence, according to the custom of those ages, was called Thorsby, from the Saxon habitatio; from which place the family of that Sirname came, which is yet at Leeds, in the same County.
36. 36th, SCI (Sancti) PETRI MOneta. Reverse, EBORACEnfis CIVitas: The Letters of both sides are inverted.
37. 37th, I can make no more of the thirty-seventh, though I have the Original before me, than of N° 9 : 11: 12: and 14; which Mr. Walker supposes to be the ancient Irish.
38. 38th, ED (W) IN. REX Anglorum. Reverse, SEEVEL ON EOFERwic. This most rare piece is justly supposed to be the ancientest of any piece now in Being of the English Nation; and Seevel the nobleman upon the Reverse, may very well be presumed to be one of the Ancestors of the ancient and honourable family of the Saviles, of which Sir John, afterwards Lord Savile, and father to the Earl of Sussex, was the first Alderman of Leedes, which place had been the Seat of the Kings of Northumberland, after this Edwin’s martyrdom by the Pagans. Sir Henry Savile, by his noble Edition of Chrysostom, &c. hath made the name as famous abroad, as his brother Sir John the Judge, and others, have done at home.
39. 39th, ÆTHEL—REXAETHEL angLOrum. Reverse, imperfect.
40. 40th, That Edward the Confessor was the first of our Kings who cured the Struma, is acknowledged by all, and that it was called the Kings-Evil upon that account, is probable enough; but that he and the succeeding Kings gave pieces of Gold in this form, may, I think, be justly scrupled, and can never be proved from EC, the supposed Initials of his name, who is never stiled Confessor upon any moneys or medals of undoubted Antiquity; and if Gold had been coined and distributed upon this or any other occasion in those ages, a greater number of them, no doubt, would have been found in the Cabinets of the Curious, as well as their current moneys; whereas, nothing of that metal appears till Edward the 3d’s time; and that, perhaps, no other, than the current silver moneys of each Prince, except gilded for distinction. Such an one, with an hole for the ribbon to be hung about the neck, was amongst the Curiosities in the old Lord Fairfax’s Musæummusaeum museum, and is yet preserved in this: It has the full face (as he is represented upon his Great-Seal in Speed’s History) with the arched Crown, and may possibly be one of the same numerical pieces given upon that occasion.
As for the Curiosity described by the Ingenious Dr. Plot in his History of Oxfordshire, and from him transmitted to number forty in this table, I look upon it as a sort of Amulet (for which those darker superstitious ages had an extraordinary Veneration,) like that noble one of King Alfred, described by the Learned Dr. † † In his Thesaurus Ling. Vet. Septenir. p.142.Hicks; and do conclude with Dr. Wotton, that those pieces inscribed St. Edmond, were of the like nature.
* Procured by Mr. Thoresby, since the last Edition of the
Britannia. * Saxon Coins. Tab. V.
By Mr. THORESBY.
1. 1st, ELRED REX . Reverse, DIARVALD MOneta. Diarwald, Deirorum SilvæSilvae, York-Wolds. This piece of the Northumbrian Elfred, was probably coined at Beverley (which is upon the Wolds, as they are call’d to this day) for the use of the Deiri, Diera, or Yorkshire-men. Some incline to read it, Rex DoroberniæDoroberniae, for Canterbury; but that City occurs not, I think, upon any of the moneys of the Saxon Kings, by the name of Dorobernia, but Cantwaraburg. Though where ANT or Cent. follows Rex, it may perhaps rather denote , the people of Kent: for though the place of mintage be mentioned on the reverses of several of these ancient Coins; yet where such a name succeeds that of the Prince, I think it not properly confined to a City (King of Canterbury sounding harshly) but rather to denote the people of such a Province: as, Offa rex Merciorum. So Ceolwulf, of the same. So, afterwards, upon the Reduction of the Heptarchy, the Monarchs were stiled, Rex Anglorum; see Tab. III. 35, &c. The Square (as on this Coin) occurs frequently upon the pieces coined in those Northern parts; and I remember not, whether upon any other.
2. 2d, BVRGRED REX (Merciorum.) Reverse, DVDA MONETArius.
3. 3d, ÆÐELRÆDAEDELRAED REX ANGLORum (the King’s head.) Reverse, (W)OLD, MOnetarius ON (de) . This is that ÆthelredAEthelred AEthered or Æthered, who was elder brother to King Alfred.
4. 4th, AELFRED REX. Reverse, AÐELVLF MOnetarius: It is a Coin of Alfred the Great.
5. 5th, (W)ARD REX (King Edward Senior, with half face and scepter.) Reverse, ÐORR ON EOFER (W)IC, York.
6. 6th, ÆÐELSTAN REXAEDELSTAN, the King’s head. Reverse, ÆLF (W) ALD MOneta (or Monetarius) LONDini CIVItatis.
7. 7th, The same. Reverse, DRINTVALD MONetarius: Dr. Wotton reads it M CON (the M and C interwoven, and the C angled) Monetarius CONven ; and so it is engraved in Sir Andrew Fountain’s Numismata (6th of Æthelstan’s;) but this piece wants the lineolælineolae that should compose the C with two angles.
8. 8th, ÆÐELSTAN REX TOtius BRTI (BritanniæBritanniae) no head. Reverse, DEORVLF MO (moneta) LE ECEIcester (Chester.)
9. 9th, EDELZTAN REX (no head.) Reverse, RIDT MONEtarius, the averse way.
10. 10th, ÆÐELSTAN REX, the King’s head very well perform’d. Reverse, WLFHEARD MOnetarius WIN: CI. (Winchester Civitatus.)
11. 11th, EADRED REX, the King’s head. Reverse, ÆÐELVERD MONETArius.
12. 12th, EADRED REX (no head.) Reverse, RICYLF MONetarius.
13. 13th, EADGAR REX (no head.) Reverse, HERIGÆRherigaer MOnetarius.
14. 14th, EADGAR REX, the King’s head, very well done for those Ages. Reverse, PIRIM. MONETA HVNTE ; this piece is neither in Sir Andrew Fountain, nor the Britannia, before.
15. 15th, EADWEARD REX, the head of Edward the Martyr. Reverse, BEANRED MONetarius.
16. 16th, The same Inscription; but no head. Reverse, BOIGA monetarius.
17. 17th, The like. Reverse, ORDVLF M‾O (monetarius).
18. 18th, ÆÐELREDAEDELRED REX ANGLORum: The King’s head and scepter. Reverse, (W) INTERLEDA M‾O (moneta) EOF (York) with CRVX in the Quarters of the Cross. In others of the same Prince we have SVMERLED, to ballance this.
19. 19th, EADMVN REX: whether the Martyr, or Ironside, I determine not. Reverse, O EIMuND MOnetarius: the name scarce legible; but the same with Sir A. F’s V. 17.
20. 20th, EAD (W)ARD REX, the head of Edward the Confessor. Reverse, V TEL ON EO . I think the time scarce agrees to Osketel the Archbishop; as an ingenious Auther inclines to read it.
21. 21st, The like. Reverse, BRININ Monetarius ON TAme; as I choose to read it, rather than MONETA; Tame, in Oxfordshire, being a noted place in those ages.
22. 22d, HAROLD REX ANGLOrum, the King’s head crown’d, and scepter. Reverse, (W)VLFGEAT ON GLEa (Glocester) with PAX in the middle.
All those above are Silver: Those which follow, are of the brass ; eight of which (as the Liards de France) made a penny, as appears by the
Saxon Version of Marc. XII. 42. A considerable number of these (and, amongst others, the first, I
think, that ever were discover’d of King Alla’s coin) were found Anno 1695, near Rippon, at
a place called Alice-hill, I presume, for Alla’s-hill, who was slain Anno 826 (not 926, as
Speed, and from him Isaacson, mistake:) Most of those found here, were the Kings of Deira,
and Sub-reguli, after Egbert had reduced it to be part of his Monarchy.
1. 1st,EThelbert. EDELRET ReX. Reverse, V BRODER.
2. 2d. Alred. ALRED REX (the L and R revers’d, as they are frequently in these Coins:) Reverse, LADDI.
3. 3d. Alred. ALRED REX. Reverse, IVV RED.
4. 4th, AELREV. Reverse, VVNAV.
5. 5th, Eanred. EANRED REX. Reverse, VVLFRED.
6. 6th, Same. Reverse, þORDRED.
7. 7th, EANRED. Reverse, MONNE, the averse way.
8. 8th, EANRED REX. Reverse, BRODR.
9. 9th, Ethelred. EDILRED REX. Reverse, EARDVVLF. This Eardwulf was afterwards King. Another has EDILRED RE‾. Another only EDILRED R. Some have only a single point, others a star of six Rays in the Center, and others a Cross.
10. 10th, EDILRED REX. Reverse, ANRED.
11. 11th, Reverse, MONNE.
12. 12th, Reverse, BERHTVE HDFL; the F and L in Bertwulf are conjoined. Dr. Wotton takes the latter word for DVNEL.
13. 13th, Reverse, LEOFDES M. Dr. Wotton reads it EOFRE . M.
14. 14th, EDEL EY. Reverse, OE Monetarius.
15. 15th, Eardulf, or Ardulf. EARDVVF. Reverse, I—ΓnV FX.
16. 16th, VRDVVLF V (Ardulf cuning.) Reverse, BRODER, Broder or Brother: The name continued till the Danish times:Selden’s Tit. of Hon. p.771. Ego BROTHER miles, occurs with other Knights, &c. as witnesses to a Charter of Canutus.
17. 17th, Ethelhelm EDILHELm. Reverse, BRODER. Neither of these persons occur in the most accurate list now remaining of the Kings of Northumberland. Ethelhelm, I suppose, was some Sub-regulus or (as the Nobleman is render’d, John iv. 46) in the confusion which it was reduced to in its declining state.
18. 18th, Osbright. OSBv , R . Reverse, MONNE. Another has the very same inscription; yet the form of the Letters and Points so different, as shew it coin’d in another Mint.
19. 19th, OSBER REx. Reverse, WINBERHt or Bertwine. Another has the T in Winebertt, which this wants. Another has OSBERV HT, without Rex or so much as R.
20. 20th, OSBER (r) EX. Reverse, E NVVΓE for Eanwulf: This has been covered with a white wash to resemble silver. Another, different only in the central points:
21. 21st, OSBER REx. Reverse, ELNA MONetarius Regis, as Dr. Wotton reads it.
22. 22d, HREB. Reverse, VVLFSIX. (Wulfsige, Dr. Wotton.)
23. 23d, Alla; ΛLLHE Rx. Reverse not intelligible to me. ⌉
Last updated Monday, December 22, 2014 at 10:48