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The Silver Coins of England

Edward Hawkins, 1841
Sole Monarchs of England - Henry III

Table of Contents

Henry III., 1216-1272.

Of Richard I. and John there is not any known English money. Rud. ii. 8. and Sup. i. 14. Sn. i. 33 and 34 are now known to be forgeries. Having restored to Henry II. the short cross money, of which he had been deprived by Mr. North and subsequent writers, the only silver money to be ascribed to Henry III. are pennies with the word TERCI, or numerals, to indicate that he is the third king of that name. From records it appears that there were more coinages than one in this reign, but there are not any sure means of separating one from the other.

The types of his coins are,

  1. The king's head, bearded, full faced, within an inner circle, outside of which is his hand holding a sceptre; he is styled HENRICVS REX III. Rev. cross of double limbs, each botone extending to the edge of the coin, generally a pellet in the centre, three pellets in each angle. (287). Rud. ii. 18. MB. 14.

    All the coins of this type were struck at Canterbury or London, one, (288) MB. 2. which reads PHELIP ON LUND, has the U in Lund of the old English character, not the Roman V as upon all the others; the workmanship, too, is very different, especially about the hair, which is formed in wavy curls as upon the coins of the Edwards; whereas upon all the others it is expressed by two curls on each side, like the volutes of an Ionic capital. As the L is united to the preceding N, the U of a perculiar form looking like a B, and the oblique line of the N omitted, the word has been read BID instead of LVND, and thereby erroneously considered to have been struck at Bideford.

  2. King's head as No. 1, but not hand and sceptre; over the head a mullet, HENRICUS REX III. Rud. ii. 16. MB. 29, or TERCI, 17. Sn. i. 41. MB. 9. Rev. same as No. 1.
  3. Same as No. 2, but crescent under the mullet, HENRICUS REX ANG. Rud. Sup. i. 16. Sup. ii. 7. Sup. 2. i. 14. Sn. i. 42. MB. 2. Of these the Museum has one which reads LIE TERCI' LON (289). This legend is a continuation of that of the obverse, thus: Henricus Rex Ang-liae tertius, London. There can be little doubt that this is the correct mode of reading the legend, though other modes have been suggested, as TERCIL ON LIE, i e. Tercil on Leicester; but the mark of abbreviation after TERCI shews that to be incorrect; or TERCI L ON LIE, i. e. tertius L. on Leicester. A coin of Mr. Cuff's decides the point, for it reads LVN, which can only be LIE TERCI LVN. A somewhat similar coin is represented, Rud. Sup. 2. i. 14, which reads LIE TERCI HED. This also is read in various ways, as Hedlie, for the name of the place of mintage, or of the moneyer Hadley, which occurs upon a penny of Edward I.; or it is suggested that the reading ought to be AED for St. Edmundsbury or Shaftesbury. This coin was first published by Mr. North; we have not seen it, and rather suspect it may be a blundered representation of the former coin.
There are not, upon any of these three types, any single letters after the moneyers' names, as upon the coins of Henry II. With these monies of Henry III. commences that simple device of a cross with three pellets in each angle, which continued almost without variation till the 18th year of Henry VII., a period of nearly 300 years, and was not abanded upon the smaller coins till about the close of the reign of James I.

Ruding, Sup. 2. ii. 23, after Mr. North's undescribed plates, gives a coin, of the size of a groat, and of the type of No. 1. This piece is now unknown; it looks like the drawing of a genuine coin, and may have been the pattern for a groat, which according to Grafton, was ordered to be struck in 1227; or, it may be taken from a common penny and magnified, as was not unusual in representations of coins in former times, a barbarous inaccurate practice, not altogether abandoned in modern days of diluted science and diffused knowledge.

Henry II | Table of Contents | Edward I


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