Rare Medieval British Coins Discovered by Metal Detectorists Sell at Auction

By Dix Noonan Webb ……
 

Two rare and noteworthy Medieval English gold coins were sold at Dix Noonan Webb on Tuesday, March 8, 2022, in London:

Crispus Gold Thrymsa

A gold shilling or thrymsa struck between 650 and 670 CE sold for £18,600 (about $24,307 USD; includes 24% buyer’s fee) in the company’s auction of Coins, Tokens, and Historical Medals at their Mayfair saleroom. Measuring just 13 millimeters in diameter and weighing 1.3 grams, the Medieval coin had been expected to fetch £8,000-10,000 and was bought in the saleroom by a member of the trade for a client.

Discovered in Haslingfield in South Cambridgeshire on Monday, January 3, 2022, by 55-year-old drainage engineer Mark Pallett from Brentwood in Essex–who decided to search a stubble field that he has been to many times before with his Minelab Equinox 800–it is one of only eight examples of this ‘Crispus’ type to have been recorded on the Early Medieval Coins database at the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge. The gold shilling was in extremely fine condition and centrally struck with all the inscriptions visible.

Following the sale, father-of-three Mark, who has been detecting for almost 40 years, said:

“I am truly overwhelmed by the price that the coin achieved and am pleased for myself and the farmer who will get half of the proceeds.”

He continued:

“I did think about buying a new detector with the money but I don’t think that there’s anything wrong with my current one as it helped me find this wonderful coin!”

Gold Leopard of Edward III

The second Medieval coin of note that sold at the March 8 auction is an extremely rare and important Gold ‘Leopard’ coin (florin) from the reign of Edward III (1327-77), dating from January 1344 and minted in 23-carat gold at the Tower of London. It sold for £173,600 (about $226,835 USD; includes buyer’s fee). Discovered in Reepham in Norfolk by metal-detectorist Andy Carter, the coin features a leopard sitting upright wearing a banner, has a face value of three shillings (36 silver pennies), and was in circulation for just seven months before being withdrawn. It was bought by a private UK collector.

Following the sale, Andy, a 65-year-old retired research scientist from Norwich, said:

“This has been a very long two and a half years since I found the coin and I can’t believe that the day is actually here. Before the coin sold my mouth went very dry and I am delighted at how well it sold. This is a life-changing amount of money and I will share with the landowner, but my partner would like a new kitchen and I have always dreamt of getting a Land Rover Defender, not sure where I will park it though!”

Nigel Mills of Dix Noon Webb continues:

“We felt very privileged to have sold the coin on behalf of Andy Carter and his partner, it’s a substantial amount of money.”

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About Dix Noonan Webb

Dix Noonan Webb Ltd is one of the world’s leading specialist auctioneers and valuers of coins, tokens, medals, militaria, paper money and jewelry. Established in 1990, the company boasts over 250 years’ combined experience in this field and stages regular auctions throughout the year.
 

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