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Curious die markings at the Thetford mint

498107. SOLD $650

ANGLO-SAXON, Kings of All England. Edward the Confessor. 1042-1066. AR Penny (20mm, 1.24 g, 6h). Hammer Cross type (BMC xi; Hild. G). Thetford mint; Ælfwine, moneyer. Struck circa 1059-1062. +EDPΛR • D REX, crowned bust right, scepter before / [+ E]LFPINE ON ÐET, voided cross, arms terminating in inward-facing crescents; extra lines cut into third quarter. Freeman 28; SCBI 1 (Fitzwilliam), 930 (same dies); North 828/1; SCBC 1182. Good VF, lightly toned, areas of weak strike. With unusual ‘cancelation’ marks to reverse die.


For a discussion of the die markings, or cancelations, that occur at the Thetford mint during the reign of Edward the Confessor see R.A.G. Carson’s article in the 1949 volume of the Numismatic Chronicle. Carson believed these markings were added by the moneyers themselves and not at the central die cutting workshop. Perhaps they were ‘to mark off the coins struck after say the receipt of some fiscal instruction’ or maybe they were indicative that the moneyer ‘had paid some interim fee for the prolongation of the use of the dies.’