The last indenture, of the twenty-first of King James, with Sir Randill Cranfield master-worker of the mint,
being determined by his Majesty's decease, a commission [Rymer, tom. 18, p. 6, 1 April.] was issued five days after to
Sir Edward Villiers, and Sir William Parkhurst, knights, wardens of the mint, and others, impowering them
to coin all bullion of gold and silver brought to the mint, and to continue the same stamp till others could be provided,
in the same manner as the said Sir Randill Cranfield should have done by the said indenture. But probably there was but
little Money coined under this commission; for the fourth of September, a proclamation [Rymer, tom. 18, p. 184, 1 April.]
was issued, for making the Silver Coin of France, called the Cardecue, current at nineteen Pence Halfpenny,
which his Majesty received for the Queen's portion, and intended to have had new stamped at the Tower; but by reason
the plague had taken hold of many of the workmen of the mint, was prevented; under colour of this proclamation, other like
Moneies, which were light, having been imported, another proclamation [Rymer, tom. 18, p. 736.] was made the twenty-sixth
of July following, to prohibit the currency of these Cardecues. The next year, by a commission [Rymer, tom. 18, p.
740, 2 Car. 1 pat. 2.] dated the fourteenth of August, the two wardens before-mentioned, Richard Rogers, Esq.
comptroller, and Andrew Palmer Esq. assay-master, or any three of them, were appointed commissioners for coining
Money of silver and gold, in such species as were usually coined in the mint, with the King's picture, titles, arms, and
inscriptions, as formerly they did, thill his Majesty should make a further settling. The silver to make of current
Money three Pounds ten Shillings and Sixpence, and the crown gold forty-four pounds by tale, to be delivered by weight,
as was then done: and the warden was to take up for the King's use, of every pound weight of silver Money five Shillings
and Sixpence by tale, out of which the moniers were to have a Penny for the better sizing the Money, and fourteen Pence
for the working, as then used; and of every pound of crown gold two Pounds twelve Shillings, out of which to be allowed
for workmanship five Shillings; and the commissioners were to be allowed after the rate of seventeen Pence upon every
pound weight of Angel and Crown Gold, out of the six Shillings for coining Angel Gold, and six Shillings and Fivepence for
Crown Gold, formerly allowed; and for every pound weight of silver fourteen Pence. The same powers were renewed by another
commission [Rymer, tom. 18, p. 753. A.D. 1606. 2 Car. 1 p. 2.] to the same effect, dated the seventh of September
following, to continue until the indenture intended to be made was fully effected.
This indenture [Ib. p. 67. Mint-Books.] is dated the eighth of November, in his second year, with Sir Robert Harley, Knight of the Bath, master and worker of the Monies of gold and silver, within his Majesty's Tower of London, and realm of England, whereby a pound of gold of the right old standard of England, viz. twenty-three carrats, three grains and a half fine, and a half grain allay, was to make forty-four Pounds ten Shillings sterling by tale; in Rose Rials at thirty Shillings a-piece, Sour Rials at fifteen, and Angels at ten Shillings; and of crown gold (twenty-two carrats fine, and two carrats allay) forty-one pounds sterling by tale; in Unites at twenty Shillings, Double Crowns at ten Shillings, and Britain Crowns at five Shillings; and the pound of silver, of th eold right standard of the silver Monies of England, namely, eleven ounces two pennyweights fine, and eighteen pennyweights allay, to be coined into pieces of five Shillings, the half five Shillings, Shillings, (sixty-two to the pound Troy,) Half Shillings, Twopenny Pieces, Pennies, and Halfpennies; and the master was to make of every hundred weight of silver four pounds weight of small Monies, viz. two pounds weight of Twopences, one pound and a half of Pence, and half a pound of Halfpence. The King was to have for coinage out of every pound of gold fifteen Shillings; of which the master was to have six Shillings for fine gold, and six Shillings and Fivepence for crown gold, for all expences about the same, paying the moniers two Shillings; so there remained to the King upon every pound coined, nine Shillings sterling upon fine, and eight Shillings Sevenpence upon crown gold, and to the merchants forty-three Pounds fifteen Shillings. And out of every pound of silver the King was to have two Shillings, out of which to the master fourteen Pence, whereof the moniers were to have Eightpence; so remained to the King Tenpence, and to the bringers three Pounds. And the master was allowed for remedy of fine gold, the eight part of a carrat; for crown gold one sixth part of a carrat; and for silver, two pennyweights of silver: and over and above the ordinary price, the moniers and workers were to be allowed one Penny of every pound of silver in tale, for the better sizing thereof, so long as the Monies were well forged and coined; and out of the King's profits were to be paid the salaries, diet, and fees to the respective officers, reparations of houses, and other incidents.
In the former reign we have observed, the great quantity of silver brought into Europe upon the opening [of] the mines of Peru and Mexico, had raised the price of gold, and caused it to be exported; so that for two years, hardly any usual payment were made in gold: but the gold, by reason of this advanced price, being brought back, there followed as great a scarcity of silver. For it had been the practice for some years among the goldsmiths, to call out [Rushworth's Collections, part 2, vol. 1, p. 149, 150.] the weightiest and best Money, (for which they gave two Shillings, and sometimes three Shillings, the hundred Pounds) to melt and transport the same, whereby the price of silver was raised above the value it was current for. The King therefore [Rymer's Foedera, tom. 18, p. 896.] appointed Henry Earl of Holland, exchanger, and by proclamation, the fifth of May, 1627, enjoined all the laws and statutes against transportation of Coin or Bullion to be strictly observed, and that none should melt any of the current Coin. And to prevent the currency of light and clipped Money, that in every gold piece current for thirty Shillings, twenty Shillings, fifteen Shillings, ten Shillings, five Shillings, or two Shillings and Sixpence, the remedy and abatement should not exceed four grains and a half, three grains, two grains and a half, two grains, one grain, and half a grain; and wanting more should not be current, but any person to whom they were offered in payment, might lawfully brand the same, by striking a hole through such pieces, returning them to the owners, and that the same should be brought to the mint to be coined.
And about the year 1630, the Lord Cottington, by virtue of a commission [Videt's Append. to Caesar, p. 24.] under the great seal, made a most advantageous contract with the King of Spain, for bringing in silver from thence into England, in English bottoms; which being landed at Dover, one third part was to be coined in the mint, and the other two thirds to be transported with licence; and above ten millions of silver was coined upon that contract, from the year 1630, to 1643. Nevertheless, in 1632, [Rushworth, part 2, vol. 1, p. 149, 150.] there was such plenty of gold, and such scarcity of silver, that the drovers and farmers who brought cattle to Smithfield, would commonly make their bargain to be paid in silver, and it was usual to give Twopence, and sometimes more, to change a twenty Shilling piece full weight, and most people carried scales in their pockets to weigh gold. And in Hilary term 1635, twelve persons were fined and imprisoned, some of whom had carried on this practice from the year 1621, and for several years had culled fifty thousand Pounds yearly, which did produce seven or eight thousand Pounds a year, heavy Money, part of which was melted down into ingots, and sold, the rest sold unmelted; several aldermen of London [Violet, 12o. 1650.] were likewise accused of this practice, but procured the King's pardom. These examples, it is probable, put a stop to this pernicious practice at that time.
In 1637, a mint was erected [Rymer, tom. 20, p. 163. A. D. 1637, p. 13, Car. 1.] in the castle of Aberuswith, in the county of Cardigan in Wales, with proper officers to be regulated from time to time by the warden of his Majesty's mint in the Tower. The thirtieth of July, the same year, is an indenture with Thomas Bushell, Esq. warden, and master-worker of his Majesty's Monies to be made within the said castle of Aberuswith, during pleasure, for the coining of all such bullion only, as shall be drawn out of the mines within the said principality, in manner following, viz. Five manners of Monies of silver, viz. Half Crowns, Shillings, Half Shillings, Twopences, and Pennies; eleven ounces two pennyweights fine, and eighteen pennyweights allay, being the old right standard of silver Monies of England; every pound weight Troy to make three pounds two Shillings sterling. And the said master-worker was bound to have a privy mark to all the Monies made by him; and also to cause the Monies made in the said mint, to be stamped with the feathers on both sides, for a clear difference from all other his Majesty's Coins.
The Romans [Fuller's Worthies in Wales, fol. Lond. 1662, p. 3.] are supposed to have begun first to mine here, (by their Coins discovered here) and found plenty of lead. The Danes and Saxons liewise found lead. Customer Smyth about the latter end of Queen Elizabeth, discovered silver, and send it up to the Tower of London, with great expence to be coined. After his death, this design was prosecuted, and improved, by Sir Hugh Middleton, Knight, coining the silver at great charge (as his predecessor had done) at the Tower. AFter his death, Sir Francis Godolphin of Cornwall, Knight, and Thomas Bushell, Esq. undertook the work; and King Charles, for their greater encouragement, granted them power of coinage at Abernisky; but Sir Francis dying soon after, Thomas Bushell proceeded alone, and was constituted warden and master of the mint erected there, as hath been mentioned: and at last these mines were so far improved, as to yield a hundred Pounds a week, besides lead, amounting to half as much. And the mint afterwards proved of great service to the King during the Rebellion.
In this reign likewise Gerard Malines, merchant, [Consuetudo, et Lex Mercatoria, by Gerard Malines, fol. Lond. 1656, p. 183.] caused divers workmen to come out of Saxony, Brunswick, and other places of Germany, and tried the ore of the divers other mines, as Slaithborne mines in Lancashire, which yielded four ounces per hundred, Comb-Martin in Cornwall, and Barnstable in Devonshire, which yielded ten ounces per hundred; and at Miggleswicke and Wardel, in the bishoprick of Durham, which yielded six or eight ounces per hundred, of which latter George Duke of Buckingham [Rymer, tom. 18, p. 90.] had a grant for twenty-one years; from whence, no doubt, he thought to draw great advantage. But though they are said [Chamb. State. Eng. Ann. 1700, p. 43.] to be richer than the mines of Potosi, yet lying deep, and hard to come at, and workmen dear, (which is otherwise at Potosi) it has not been found to answer the charge of working.
Upon the King's setting up his standard at Nottingham, the two Universities [Clarendon.] sent to him all, or very near all, their plate, and a considerable sum of Money; the plate was delivered out by weight, as Money, and secret orders were given to the officers of the mint, to be ready to come to his Majesty, as soon as he shall find himself in a place convenient. After this, marching from Nottingham, he came to Shrewsbury where he erected a mint; but Clarendon says, that, for want of workmen and instruments, they could not coin a thousand Pounds a week; for after the parliament [The Moniers' answer to Blondeau, p. 27.] had seized the Tower, most of the officers of the mint were employed by them: but afterwards, his Majesty was attended by the officers of the mint at Aberiswith, for which reason the Money was coined by them has the feathers, or Prince of Wales's device for the mint-mark. When the city of Oxford was made a garrison for the King, New Inn was made a mint-house. And these two and York were the principal mints, though there was Money coined at several other places.
Upon the first Money of this King, both gold and silver, his Majesty is represented with a large rough about his neck, and upon all he appears with a peaked beard, which is peculiar to this reign.
The Rose Rial of thirty Shillings of fine gold, has the King's figure sitting in state, with the portcullis at his feet, and the same reverse and legend as his farther's; CAROLVS. D. G. MA. BRI. FR. ET. HIB. REX. A mullet of six points the mint-mark.
The Spur Rial like his father's, and the same mint-mark.
The Angel has St. Michael and the dragon, as usual, with the figure X. denoting the value. Reverse, the ship, like his fathers; AMOR. POPVLI. PRAESIDIVM. REGIS. A mullet of six points, a castle, or a heart, the mint-marks. These are supposed to be the last Money coined of the old standard.
The first Unites are like the first Shillings, having the King's bust crowned, the face turned to the right, the collar of the garter about his neck, and a larger ruff than what we see afterwards upon the Money, and XX. behind the head for the value; CAROLVS. D. G. MAG. BR. FR. ET. HI. REX. Reverse, the arms as his father's , in a shield, crowned, CVLTORES. SVI. DEVS. PROTEGIT. A fleur de lis or a cross upon a mount, the mint-mark.
Another with a smaller ruff, neatly struck, has a heart the mint-mark, an anchor, or a castle.
Another sort, much neater than the former, has the head smaller, the bottom of the bust breaking into the inscription, the scarf being gathered in a knot upon the shoulder, the ruff and george in a ribbon about the King's neck, and this legend, FLORENT. CONCORDIA. REGNA. The Prince's device the mint-mark. In others the bust does not break into the legend, and the arms are in an oval shield between C. R. Mint-marks, a large double rose, a blackmoor's head, a castle, or a cross upon a mount.
To the ruff succeeded the band, XX. behind the King's head as before; CAROLVS. D. G. MA. BR. FR. ET. HIB. REX. Reverse, the arms in an oval shield, crowned, between C. R. crowned; FLORENT. CONCORDIA. REGNA. A portcullis, a triangle within a circle, an arched crown, or a sun, the mint-marks.
One with the band has the arms in an oval shield, between C. R. crowned, and the legend, CVLTORES, &C. having the letter (P.) within a parenthesis for the mint-mark, being coined by the parliament in 1644.
The Half Unites, or Double Crowns, are like the Unites of the same mintage, with X. behind the head for the value.
The Britain Crown, in like manner, have V. behind the head.
The Unite of the milled sort, with graining upon the flat edge, CAROLVS. D. G. MAG. BRITAN. FRAN. ET. HIB. REX. XX. behind the King's head, crowned. Reverse, the arms in a square shield, crowned, between C. R. crowned, CVLTORES. SVI. DEVS. PROTEGIT. Mint-mark, a flower like a marygold, and a little B. for BRIOT. who both engraved the stamps, and made this milled Money, as will be more particularly noted under the Silver Money.
Another, exactly like the former, but with the legend, FLORENT, &C
The Half Unites are like the Unites, but X. behind the head for the value.
There are, besides these, several milled pieces, which seem to have been only designs for gold Coins.
One of this sort is a little broader than a Guinea, and weighs two pennyweights, five grains and a half, having the King's bust bare-headed, without the figures behind the head, CAROLVS. D. G. MAG. BRIT. FR. ET. HI. REX. Reverse, the arms in an oval shield, crowned, between C. R. crowned; and the motto FLORENT. &C. and a fleur de lis the mint-mark.
Another of the same kind has HIB. for HI. and wants the crowns above the initial letters, in all other respects, exactly like the foregoing.
There is likewise a curious piece weighing eight pennyweights, eighteen grains, and a half, with the King's head admirably well done, bare-headed, and the love-lock (as it was called) hanging before, which, it seems, was so disagreeable to the Round-Heads (so called from the contrary extreme) that Prynn wrote a book against it, called The Unloveliness of Love-Locks; CAROLVS. D. G. MAGN. BRITANN. FRANC. ET. HIB. REX. Reverse, the arms in a shield, garnished and crowned, between C. R. crowned; AVSPICIIS. REX. MAGNE. TIVS. and over the crown the date, 1630. The figure of St. George for the mint-mark, and a small B. for Briot; and this, by the date, was probably one of the first proofs or specimens of his art.
This Nicholas Briot [Rymer. tom. 19, p. 287.] was a native of Lorrain, and sometime graver-general of the Monies in France, being the most able man of his profession then in Europe; and tho' he was not the first inventor of the fly or mill for coining Money (as he pretended) he certainly much improved it, and proposed [Le Blanc, 296.] the use of it in France, giving convincing proofs of the perfection of his machine. But not only the hammer-men, but the court of Moniers, united against him: they omitted nothing that art or malice could invent to oppose him. And this combination prevaling, his proposal was rejected. Upon this disappointment, he came over into England, where he met with encouragement. He was first [Rymer, tom. 19, p. 40.] made a free Denizen, and by the King's letters patent, dated the sixteenth of December 1628, was authorized to frame and engrave the first designs and efigies of the King's image, in such sizes and forms, as were to sever inall sorts of Coins of gold and silver; and there is gold Money of 1630 with his mark thereon. He likewise proposed [Rymer, tom. 19, p. 287.] to work the Monies of gold and silver, with instruments and presses remaining in his hands, whereby he could make and press the Money in a more perfect roundness, weight, figure, and impression, and with less charge, than the ordinary way of hammering then used; whereupon his Majesty was pleased, by warrant, dated the eleventh of February 1629, to refer the same for trial, at his own charges, the officers of the mint furnishing him with convenient lodging in the mint, and delivering him gold and silver, to be converted into several sorts of gold and silver Money, as appointed by the indenture of the mint then subsisting. The thirteenth of June [Rymer, tom. 19, p. 287.] 1631, his Majesty appointed commissioners to examine and view his trial and proofs, intending the Monies so made by him, should have current course, as the other Money made by ordinary way of the hammer. And whereas at first he was to have only a month's time to teach and exercise his men in the working of Monies, the time was now prolonged, to make trial of his experience, till the King should signify his pleasure to the contrary. Afterward he had a grant [Rymer, tom. 19, p. 526.] Officium unius Capitalis Sculptoris Ferrorum monete infra Turrim London, dated the 27th of January 1633. And by his means (Le Blanc [P. 303.] says) the English made the finest Money in the world. He likewise graved the stamps for the Scotch Money, but does not seem to have been fully employed in the English mint till his return from Scotland, the first stamp for silver Money bearing date in 1635. And France might still have been deprived of this admirable invention, if the Chancellor Sequier had not discovered the tricks of the moniers against Briot, and caused him to be recalled about the year 1640, when the mill was first used for the coining of Louis d'Or's, and in 1645 it was established in France, and the use of the hammer forbid.
During the civil war, King Charles coined Ten-Shilling Pieces, Twenty-Shilling Pieces, and Three-Pound Pieces of gold. The two former have X. and XX. behind the King's bust in armour, crowned, and the lesser george in a chain about his neck, holding in his right hand a naked sword erect, and in his left an olive branch; CAROLVS. D. G. MAG. BR. FR. ET. HIBER. REX. Reverse, a triple escrole, inscribed, RELIG. PROT. LEG. ANG. LIBER. PAR. The Prince's device above in three places, and at bottom the date, 1643. Circumscribed with this legend, EXVRGAT. DEVS. DISSIPENTVR. INIMICI. And the Welch feathers, or Prince's device, for the mint-mark, which was the mark of the mint of Aberiswith, whose officers attended the King, after the Parliament had seized the Tower, in the beginning of the year 1643.
Others coined at Oxford, have the date 1642, 1643, 1644, and underneath OX.
The Three-Pound Piece, of the value of three Broad Pieces, is like the Twenty-Shilling Piece, having III. above the inscription, amongst the feathers, and the feathers behind the King's head, of different dates, as 1642, 1643, 1644.
The Shillings and Sixpences have all the King's head crowned, and the value XII. or VI. behind the head, of various stamps, like the gold money.
Those of the first coinage have the ruff and collar of the garter, like the gold Money of the same mintage; CAROLVS. D. G. MAG. BR. FR. ET. HI. REX. Reverse, the arms divided by the old cross; CHRISTO. AVSPICE. REGNO. The mint-mark, a cross upon a mount.
Another with the ruff, has the King's bust in armour, crowned, and a scarf tied in a knot upon his shoulder. Reverse, the arms in an oval shield, and C. R. above it. A rose the mint-mark.
A milled sort, with graining upon the flat edge, is otherwise like the former, but a much better stamp; it has the Welch feathers above the arms, between C. R. and feathers for the mint-mark, and seems to be the gold stamp.
Shillings and Sixpences with the laced band, which succeeded the ruff, without dates. CAROLVS. D. G. MAG. BRI. FRA. ET. HIB. REX. Reverse, an escocheon of the arms, divided by the old cross, CHRISTO. AVSPICE. REGNO. A scepter the mint-mark. It is a very bad stamp.
Another of a better dye has the arms in a round shield, and wants the circle on both sides. A bell the mint-mark.
One with a harp for the mint-mark, has the King's head much larger than usual, the crown intersecting the legend, and extending to the rim of the coin. Reverse, the arms in a kind of oval shield, between C. R.
Of the milled sort, CAROLVS. D. G. MA. BR. FR. ET. HI. REX. Reverse an escocheon of the arms divided by the cross, CHRISTO, &C. A tun the mint-mark.
CAROLVS. D. G. MAG. BRIT. FR. ET. HIB. REX. An anchor the mint-mark.
Another the like, but has a small rose or cinqfoil at the point of one of the flukes of the anchor.
A neater sort has a rose for the mint-mark, and the arms in a round shield.
Another with the feathers before, and the figures behind the head; the mint-mark an expanded book.
Shilling and Sixpences with dates.
One of the milled sort with the King's bust in armour, and laced band, crowned, CAROLVS. D. G. MAGN. BRITANN. FRANC. ET. HIBER. REX. Reverse, the arms in a shield crowned, between C. R. crowned, and the date above the shield, 1635. ARCHETYPVS. MONETAE. ARGENTAE. ANGLIAE. A small B. for Briot. The Shillings and Sixpences that follow, are all of the hammered sort, the use of the mill being laid aside, in all probability, upon Briot's return to France, and the troubles increasing in England.
One with the feathers before, and figures behind the King's head. Reverse, the inscription in three lines, RELIG. PROT. LEG. ANG. LIBER. PAR. the three Welch devices above, and the date below, 1643, 1644, or 1645; circumscribed with the legend EXVRGAT. &C. An expanded book the mint-mark.
The unhappy situation of the King's affairs may be traced by his Money, which grew worse and worse in the stamp, till at last they hardly deserve the name Coin, seeming rather the wrok of a smith, (as perhaps they were) than a graver, and manifest they were coined in the greatest hurry and confusion. But notwithstanding the King's distress for Money, it is remarkable, he never debased the Coin, or raised the value of it, as had frequently been done in France upon much less emergencies.
One of 1644, miserably performed, has the date under the inscription like the former. Mint-mark, the feathers.
Another, of the same year, has the arms in a round shield, and the legend CHRISTO, &C. with the date, 1644, in the circumscription.
The Sixpence has the titles abbreviated to M. B. F. ET. H.
Others of 1645, and 1646, with the inscription, feathers, and legend Exurgat, &C. as before; the latter has a small scroll between the feathers and the inscription.
Those of Oxford mint have the inscription, feathers, and legend as the former, with OX. under the date.
Those of York mint have the King's head and stile as usual, with a lion passant guardant for the mint-mark. Reverse, the shield of arms divided by the old cross, and above the shield EBOR. and the legend, CHRISTO, &C.
Another sort has the arms in an oval shield cronwed, and EBOR. under the shield. A third like the former, but on each side appears a lion's paw, grasping the shield, and EBOR. at the bottom in a scroll.
There were likewise Shillings and Sixpences coined by the Parliament, with the King's stamp, and known from his only, by the letter (P.) inserted as a mint-mark.
The Groats are like the Shillings of the same mintage, having IIII. behind the King's head, and the titles abbreviated to M. B. F. ET. H. And reverse, the arms in a round or oval shield, and the legend, CHRISTO. AVSPICE. REGNO.
Others have the feathers before, and IIII. behind the King's head.
One with the titles, MAG. BRI. FRA. ET. HIB. Reverse, the arms in a very small oval shield, under the feathers, A crown the mint-mark.
Others of the milled sort like the larger pieces; and some very barbarously perforemed, with a rose or fleur de lis for the mint-marks.
The Groats, with the dates, have the feathers and figures on the head side, and upon the reverse the inscription, Religio, &C. with the feathers above, the date underneath, and the legend Exurgat, &C. Those of Oxford mint have OX. added under the date.
One of Oxford mint, 1644, has the titles abbreviated to letters, and above the inscription has the feathers between two fleurs de lis, the mint-mark a quatrefoil.
Another of the same year and mint, has the figures behind, but not the feathers before the head, which is much larger than usual, and extends to the edge of the Coin; a small R. under the head, and the legend beginning at bottom, different from all the former.
One of 1645, like the former, has the feathers separated from the inscription by a scroll, with a circle in the middle, divided per saltier, perhaps, designed for a mint-mark, there being no other.
The Threepences have III. behind the head, otherwise like the Groats. Some have likewise the feathers, or Prince of Wales's device before the head, and the arms are in some divided by the old cross, in others in a round or oval shield, with the feathers over it, and the legend, CHRISTO, &C.
One with III. behind the head, and without the feathers, has the arms divided by the cross, and above the shield the date 1644; CHRISTO, &C. A rose the mint-mark.
Others have the inscription Religio, &C. the feathers above, and date underneath, with the legend, EXVRGAT, &C.
A neat one of York mint, has the arms with the cross, and EBOR. above the shield; the legend CHRISTO. &C. and the mint-mark like the Shilling of the same mint.
The Twopences have the head like the larger pieces. Those of his first coinage with a ruff, and II. behind it; CARO. D. G. MA. BR. FR. ET. HI. REX. Reverse, the arms in an oval shield, IVSTITIA. THRONVM. FIRMAT. A rose the mint-mark.
The King's head with the band, CAROLVS. D. G. M. B. F. ET. H. REX. Reverse, the arms in a round shield, and the legend, IVSTITIA, &C. beginning at the bottom. This has a small sun for the mint-mark. Another has a very large sun.
Others have the arms in an oval shield between C. R. the mint-marks a portcullis, a crown, a harp, a triangle.
Those with the inscription and dates, have a reverse like the larger pieces.
One of Oxford mint, 1644, has a large fleur de lis, between two lesser above the the (sic) inscription, and the motto EXVRGAT. &C. beginning on the right side. A fleur de lis the mint-mark.
Another Twopence has the King's head, as usual; but the Prince's device fills the area on the reverse, circumscribed with the motto, IVSTITIA, &C. An expanded book the mint-mark.
A very neat milled Twopence has the King's head looking the contrary way from the others, viz. to the left, bare-headed, and a large ruff about his neck; CAR. D. G. MAG. BRIT. FRAN. ET. HI. R. Reverse, two C's interlinked under a crown, FIDEI. DEVENSOR. The mint-mark a small B.
The Rose Twopence has the rose crowned on both sides, C. D. G. ROSA. SINE. SPINA. Reverse, IVS. THRONVM. FIRMAT. Mint-mark, a fleur de lis, a castle, &c.
One with a thistle crowned upon the reverse, and the legend TVEATVR. VNITA. DEVS.
The Pennies are like the Twopences, but having I. behind the head. Reverse, the arms, and IVSTITIA, &C.
The Rose Penny is like the Twopence, but without the crown on either side.
A Penny with the Prince's device.
The Crown and Half Crown has the King's figure on horseback in armour, with a scarf, and crowned, holding a drawn sword upright in his right hand, CAROLVS. D. G. MAG. BRI. FRA. ET. HIB. REX. But in some the titles are more or less abbreviated, and the horse in different postures, but usually passant. Reverse, the arms in a shield of different forms, sometimes divided by the old cross, and others of a circular or oval form, crowned. His first Crowns, like the other species of the same coinage, are distinguished by the ruff about the King's neck.
One has the horse passant in a very lame posture, CAROLVS. D. G. MAG. BRIT. FRAN. ET. HIB. REX. Reverse, the arms in an oval shield, CHRISTO. AVSPICE. REGNO. A mullet of six points the mint-mark.
Another with the titles more abbreviated, an anchor and a small B. the mint-mark.
A third whereon the horse is something smaller, and foreshortened. An eye the mint-mark.
A fourth, whereon both horse and man are in armour, and the horse is represented upon a full trot, having trappings with a cross thereon, feathers upon the horse's head, and the King holding the sword upon his shoulder. Reverse, the arms in a long oval shield, divided by the cross, and C. R. above the shield. A harp the mint-mark.
Another, whereon the King holds his sword in a striking posture, having feathers upon the horse's head and crupper, and a rose crowned upon the trappings. Reverse, the arms divided by the cross. The mint-mark a fleur-de-lis.
The milled Crown has hte King upon his horse, passant, without trappings, and holding his sword erect; CAROLVS. D. G. MAGN. BRITAN. FRAN. ET. HIBER. REX. Reverse, the arms in an oval shield crowned, between C. R. crowned. Legend, CHRISTO, &C. A flower for the mint-mark, resembling a marygold, with a very small B. I suppose, for Briot. The Half Crown is the same; and there is another like it, but having an anchor, and a small B. for the mint-mark.
A Half Crown with the King on horseback, without trappings, holding his sword erect. Reverse, the arms in a plain shield, between C. R. The mint-mark a lion guardant, perhaps of York mint.
Another with the same foreshortened, and EBOR. under the horse. Reverse, the arms in an oval shield crowned; a lion passant guardant the mint-mark. The Exeter Crown has the horse large, and ill done; reverse, the arms in a round shield, with the date in the circumscription, after the legend, 1645, and EX. for Exeter. A rose the mint-mark.
The Chester Half-Crown, with CHST. under the arms.
The Crowns and Half-Crowns coined by the Parliament, have the letter (P.) as a mint-mark in the legend.
The Crowns and Half-Crowns coined by the officers of the mint of Aberiswith, have the feathers behind the King's head. Reverse the inscription, RELIG. PROT. LEG. ANG. LIBER. PAR. in two lines, above it the three devices, and below the inscription the date 1642, and the legend EXVRGAT, &C. beginning at the right side. Mint-mark the feathers. Those of 1644, and 1645, have the titles abbreviated to REL. PROT. LE. AN. LI. PA. and the monogram B[crescent]. under the horse.
A Crown Piece coined at Oxford, has the date 1644 under the inscription, and the representation of the city under the horse.
The Half-Crown stamped in the West of England, has the King's figure on horseback, as before, with a large scarf flying behind him. Reverse, the arms within the garter, crowned with the royal crown, between C. R. crowned, and supported as his father's on the dexter-side by the English lion, and on the sinister by the Scotch unicorn; under the arms the date, 1645, CHRISTO. AVSPICE. REGNO. This was probably of the silver from the mines of Comb-Martin in Cornwall, where, as well as at Barnstable in Devonshire, the hundred of ore yielded ten ounces of silver, a trial being made of the respective ores in divers parts of England, by Gerard Malines, merchant, who brought workment from Saxony, Brunswick, and other parts, for that purpose.
The Ten-Shilling, and Twenty-Shilling Pieces of silver, which were only coined by this Prince, are both alike, ahving on one side the King on horseback, trampling on a heap of arms, holding his sword upright in his hand, the feathers behind him, CAROLVS. D. G. MAGN. BRIT. FRAN. ET. HIB. REX. Reverse, the inscription, RELIGIO, &C. in two lines; over it the three devices, and figures X, or XX, for the value; and below the inscription the date 1642, or 1643; the legend, EXVRGAT, &C. Some of these are much broader than others.
Besides the common species of Money before-mentioned, coined by authority, necessity gave birth to many obsidional or siege pieces, where neither mint nor minters were to be had.
Of this kind is a Three-Shilling Piece, stamped at the siege of Carlisle, having the initial letters C R, the crown above, and underneath, the figures III. for the value. Reverse, OBS. CARL. 1645.
The Shilling, Sixpence, and Groat of the same stamp, is octangular, and has the value in figures, XII. VI. and IV.
The Newark Half-Crown, in form of a lozenge, has the crown between C R, and under it XXX. Reverse, OBS. NEWARK. 1643, or 1646.
The Newark Shilling has XII. under the crown, the Ninepence IX. the Sixpence VI.
The Pontefract Money has on one side the letters C R under the crown, DVM. SPIRO. SPERO. for it had been held out as long as there was any hope of relief. Reverse, the famous castle: on one side of it OBS. on the other appears out of the side of the castle, a hand holding a naked sword, and above the castle P C; underneath the date, 1648. This is octangular, very broad, and thin, and weighs three pennyweights one grain.
Another, in the form of a lozenge, has the hand issuing out of one of the towers, 1648.
A third sort is round, of the same date, but without the hand and sword, and, instead thereof, on that side, has the value XII. between P C, and weighs two pennyweights, fifteen grains.
There is also Plate Money, being part of a Silver Plate, an inch and a half long, with the figure of a castle on it, supposed to be Scarborough, marked IIS. IIID. being it's weight. Another of an irregular form, with the figure of a different castle, and under it, IS. IIID. Another IS. IIIID.
There are likewise pieces of silver, having on one side, near the edge, XII, and NE. at the contrary edge of the other; and a Sixpence with NE. and VI. which some think to be of Newark, before the Lozenge Money. But Mr. Thoresby [Appendix, p. 592] tells us, that it is New England Money, where they are called North Easters; and obverses, that the late Earl of Pembroke had placed them as such in his collection.
The sum of the silver Money [Lownds, p. 104.] coined by this King, we are told, amounted to eight million, seven hundred and seventy-six thousand, five hundred and forty-four Pounds, ten Shillings, and Threepence; and of gold, he is said to have coined one million, five hundred thousand pounds: but, perhaps, this is meant only what was coined at the Tower. Another writer acquaints us, [Violet's Appeal to Caesar, 4to. Lond. 1660, p. 24.] that above ten millions was coined from the year 1630 to 1643: but by the account of the officers of the mint, [The Monier's Answer to Blondeau, p. 27.] there was coined about a million a year, and from 1640 to 1641, six millions of silver.
The copper Farthings [Rushworth, p. 2, v. 1, p. 38. Rymer, tom. 18, p. 108.] of King James having been generally current in England, Ireland, and Wales, to the benefit of all sorts of people, a proclamation was made in May, after King Charles's accession, for the continuance of Farthing Tokens of copper, and to prevent the counterfeiting of them, and the use of others: and the fourth of June following, another proclamation, forbidding the use of all others than such as had been coined by authority, or that should be coined by letters patent [Rymer, tom. 18, p. 143.] granted to Frances Dutchess Dowager of Richmond and Lenox, and Sir Francis Crane, Knight; which grant was from the eleventh of July, for the term of seventeen years. These Farthing Tokens were to be made of copper, having on the one side two scepters crossing under one diadem, and on the other side a harp crowned, with the title CAROLVS. DEI. GRATIA. MAGNE. BRITANNIE. FRANCIE. ET. HIBERNIE. REX. weighing six grains a-piece, or more. And for the better distributing the same, they were to deliver at the rate of twenty-one Shillings in Farthing Tokens for every twenty Shillings sterling Money, and to repay twenty Shillings sterling for twenty-one Shillings in tokens, as well those that were made, as those that should be made. But the smallness of these pieces gave such encouragement to counterfeiting, that great quantities [Rymer, tom. 19, p. 760.] of counterfeit Farthing Tokens were made, and vended in England and Ireland, and particular persons, for private gain, compelled may of the poorer sort, by necessity, to take all or most of their wages in Farthings, from such as bought great quantities at low rates, and made a commodity thereof; which had been a great grievance to people in many parts, as well as prejudicial to the patentees: for these reasons the court of Star-Chamber [Rushworth, pt. 2, vol. 1, p. 251.] took it under consideration, the twentieth of June 1634, and ordered, that no person should pay above Twopence in Farthings to any other, at one time, and declared it unlawful to barter for any Farthings, at a lesser value than they were vended by his Majesty's patentees. This being still ineffectual, the same was farther enforced by a proclamation [Rymer, tom, 19, p.760.] the first of March 1635, prohibiting the use of any other than those coined by lawful authority. And to the end such Farthing Tokens might be the better known from counterfeits, they were directed to be made with a distinction of brass; which Farthing Tokens, so made, were to be current in England, Ireland, and Wales, for the value of Farthings to be used only in exhcange for small sums: and the said Farthing Tokens, and all others formerly made of copper only, were to be re-changed into the current Monies and Coins of the kingdom, for the ease of those that should require such change.
The first copper Farthings before mentioned answer the description, having the crown with two scepters passing through it, in saltier, CAROLVS. [or CARO.] D. G. MAG. BRIT. Reverse, the harp crowned, FRAN. ET. HIB. REX. A woolpack, or a bell the mint-mark. They are about the size of a Threepence.
The latter Farthings are likewise of copper, but with a piece of brass in the middle, having the crown and scepters as before, CAROLV. D. G. MA. BRI. Reverse, FRA. ET. HI. REX. instead of the harp a rose crowned. These have a crown, a cross, or a mullet for the mint-marks, and are heavier than the former, weighing eighteen grains, though not so broad.
The Scotch Coins of King Charles, are first, his Sovereign or Unite, of the same value as his father's. It is a curious Coin, exhibiting his Majesty's figure in wrought armour, crowned; the sceptre in his right hand, resting upon his shoulder, the orb in his left; CAROLVS. D. G. MAG. BRITAN. FRAN. ET. HIB. REX. Reverse, in a shield crowned, between C R. crowned, the arms of Scotland in the first and fourth quarters, France and England quarterly in the second, and Ireland in the third; HIS. PRAESVM. ET. PROSIM. A thistle-head and a small B. the mint-mark; being graved by Nicholas Briott before mentioned; who, it is probably, soon after his grant for graving the stamps of the Money, was first employed in the Scotch mint, because the first English gold Money of his graving, is of the year 1630, and the first silver in 1635.
The Double Crown has the King's head crowned, extending to the edge of the Coin, and looking the contrary way; CARO. D. G. MAG. BRIT. FRAN. ET. HIB. REX. Reverse, the arms as before, VNITA. TVEMVR.
The British Crown and Half-Crown the like.
Mr. Anderson [Diplomat. et Numismat. Scotiae, fo. Edinburgh, 1739.] gives us a Double Crown, having the King's bust crown'd: reverse like the Unit, but the C. R. not crowned. HENRICVS. ROSAS. REGNA. IACOBVS.
The silver Half-Crown, or Thirty Shilling Piece Scotch, has a flower like a marygold, and a small B. the int-mark, like the English Money of the same mintage. CAROLVS. D. G. MAGN. BRITAN. FRAN. ET. HIB. REX. Reverse, the arms as before in a shield crowned; QVAE, DEVS. CONIVNXIT. NEMO. SEPARET. A thistle-head, and a F. the mint-mark on this side.
Another has a thistle with leaves for the mint-mark. On this the King's sword is shorter, and blunt at the point, and under the horse is a small B.
Another has the King's head very large, and extending to the rim, like the Shilling of the same mintage.
The Shilling has the King's bust in armour, and crowned, looking to the left, XII. behind the head. CAROLVS. D. G. MAG. BRIT. FRAN. ET. HIB. REX. The arms as before, and motto, QVAE. DEVS. &C. A thistle head the mint-mark.
The Sixpence has VI. behind the head, and the date (1603) above the arms.
A very neat Shilling has XII. behind the King's head, crowned, looking to the right, and with a laced band. CAROLVS. D. G. MAG. BRITAN. FRAN. ET. HIB. REX. Reverse, the arms, as usual, under the crown, and between C. R. crowned; QVAE. DEVS. &C. A thistle with leaves the mint-mark, and a small F.
A Shilling with the large bust, crowned, extending to the edge of the Coin; drapery about the neck, and XII. behind the head. CAR. D. G. MAG. BRIT. FRAN. ET. HIB. REX. A small B. the mint-mark; the reverse like the former. Another the like, has a small F for the mint-mark.
The Sixpences are like the Shillings, but have the value VI. instead of XII.
The Scotch Noble, or Half Mark, has the King's head crowned as before described, almost extending to the edge of the Coin, and behind it VI. CAROLVS. D. G. SCOT. ANG. FR. & HIB. R. Reverse, the arms in a shield, crowned, CHRISTO. AVSPICE. REGNO. Another has the shield crowned between C. R. crowned, and the date over it 1636, and a small B. for the mint-mark under the head.
The Forty-penny Piece, or Quarter Mark; CAR. D.G. &C. has XL. behind the head, as before. Reverse, a thistle with leaves under the crown. SALVS. REIPVB. SVPREMA. LEX. the mint-mark an F.
The Twenty-penny Piece has XX. behind the head, and a different legend, viz. IVSTITIA. THRONVM. FIRMAT. An F. the mint-mark.
Another has the thistle crowned, between C. R. also crowned, a small B. under the head. And there is one without C. R. whereon the inscription begins at the top, and goes quite round the head.
The Two-Shilling Piece has II. behind the King's head crowned, CAR. D. G. SCOT. ANG. FRAN. ET. HIB. REX. Reverse, the Scotch shield crowned; IVSTITIA. THRONVM. FIRMAT.
Copper Money. CAROLVS. D. G. MAG. BRIT. the branched thistle. Reverse, behind a lion two points. FRAN. ET. HIB. REX. The Half of it the same.
A Bothwell. CAR. D. G. SCOT. ANG. FRA. ET. HIB. R. The crown, and under it C. R. Reverse, the thistle, NEMONE. IMPVNE. LACESSIT.
Another, CIIR. under the crown, in other respects like the former, but weighs not a third part of it.
Likewise a small Bothwell of Charles the First, when the liberty [Thoresby, No 735.] of coining was granted to Sir William Alexander, Earl of Sterling.
There was no Money coined by King Charles for Ireland; but anno 1642, [Irish Hist. lib. 169.] in order to maintain an army there, to suppress the Popish rebels, the King's loyal subjects, encouraged by an order of council, brought in their plate to be stamped as Money. The first of this kind had no other stamp than the intrinsic value of the silver, as one pennyweight, six grains, current for Fourpence Halfpenny, &c. The Inchequin Crown, marked nineteen pennyweights, eight grains, and lesser pieces from a Crown to a Sixpence. But afterwards all pieces from one Penny to five Shillings, were stamped with a crown, and C. R. and on the reverse, VS. IIS.VID. XIID. VID. IIIID. IIID. IID. ID. but lighter than the English Money, the Crown weighing about seventeen pennyweights fourteen grains, and the lesser pieces in proportion. These being coined by the appointment of the Duke of Ormond, then Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, are commonly called Ormond Money.
There is another Crown without inscription, having on one side a plain cross, and on the other the value, VS. supposed to be coined at the siege of Dublin, in 1641; for soon after the beginning of the rebellion, there were some coined of a different stamp from the former.
The Shillings and Sixpences of Cork, have only the name of the place, CORK. on one side, and upon the reverse, the value, XIID. or VID.
The Farthings, with the harp crowned on the reverse, were an English Coin, as I have obvserved before, and not Irish, as they are commonly esteemed, but coined for the use of both kingdoms.
There are other copper pieces, which have passed for Halfpence and Farthings in Ireland; but for what purpose they were coined, and by whom, is uncertain.
These have on one side the figure of a king, like David, kneeling, and playing upon the harp, and over it the crown of England of a different metal from the Coin, brass or copper, FLOREAT REX. Of these are two sorts, of different dimensions, the larger weighing from five pennyweights ten grains, to five pennyweights fifteen grains; and the smallest from four pennyweights, to three pennyweights eighteen grains, and have different reverses; the biggest has the figure of St. Patrick, with a crosier in his right hand, and a small cross in his left, which he holds out to the people about him, and by him a shield, with figures therein like Fers de Moline, four and two, or Queves d'Ermine, perhaps intended for the arms of the Titular Popish Metropolitan. ECCE. GREX. The smaller pieces have St. Patrick, with a double cross in his left hand, a church behind him, holding out his right hand, and driving away from the church a parcel of venemous creatures, no doubt, meaning thereby the different sects of Protestants. QVIESCAT, PLEBS. Of the latter are silver pieces, about the same weight as the copper ones, and these silver ones, no doubt, were Medals, as Mr. Evelyn [Numismata, p. 133.] esteemed them; but whether by him rightly placed to Charles the Second is a question. Bishop Nicholson [Irish Hist. Library, p. 169.] places them to Charles the First, and in his reign it is most probable they were struck by the Papists, when they rebelled in Ireland, and massacred the Protestants, pretending to act under the King's authority, for they are manifestly of a Popish stamp. Amongst other acts of their general assembly at Kilkenny, in 1642, they ordered [Rymer, tom. 20, p. 537] there should be a seal for the kingdom; that the enemies should not be called by the name of English, or Protestants, but the Puritanical or Malignant Party; that they should consider of a model of civil government; that Money should be leveied; that Coin and Plate should be raised, and that there should be forthwith coined the sum of four thousand Pounds to pass current in the kingdom, according to the proclamation, or act, published by direction of the assembly. These were, perhaps, the before-mentioned copper pieces, and they took the fashion of inserting a bit of brass in the copper from the King's latter Farthings, the better to prevent counterfeiting: but for what value they were originally intended, or made current, is uncertain. Afterwards they passed for the value the common people put upon them; and being something heavier than King Charles the Second's best Irish Halfpence, went currently for such.