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An Essay on the Roman Denarius,
and English Silver Penny.
(A List of Coin and Medal Collectors in London, and in the Country)

by William Till, 1837

Table of Contents
Pinkerton gives you the names of a few of the principal collectors of his day, of whom five or six are still living. Numismatics must have wonderfully progressed since his time, when in London alone, at present, we can enumerate the following Noblemen and Gentlemen as the chief Collectors, namely: —
         The Duke of Devonshire            J. Y. Akerman, Esq.
         The Earl of Harrington            J. Baker, Esq.
         Baron Bolland                     William Bentham, Esq.
         Sir Henry Ellis, K.H.             J. B. Bergne, Esq.
         Colonel Fox                       Charles Barclay, Esq.
         Colonel Durrant                   James Broad, Esq.
         Lieut. Col. Bowler                John Brumell, Esq.
         Dr. Lee                           Samuel Birch, Esq.
         The Rev. E. C. Brice              Robert Boyne, Esq.
         The Rev. J. A. Giles              Thos. Burgon, Esq.
         The Rev. Mr. Cotton               J. D. Cuff, Esq.
         L. J. Curtis, Esq.                Fred. Perkins, Senr. Esq.
         Pitt Cobbett, Esq.                T. C. Powell, Esq.
         William Dicken, Esq.              — Pybus, Esq
         Chris. Edmonds, Esq.              Hy. Robson, Esq.
         John Freeman, Esq.                J. Sams, Esq.
         Josh. Guilt, Esq.                 C. R. Smith, Esq.
         George Guilt, Esq.                Edward Spencer, Esq
         W. D. Haggard, Esq.                 (Aeronaut)
         Edward Hawkins, Esq.              Archd. Stephens, Esq.
         John Hills, Esq.                  Thos. Thomas, Esq.
         — Hayward, Esq.                   — Towers, Esq.
         — Hunt, Esq.                      William Wansey, Esq.
         Edward Ivardan, Esq.              T. Walsh, Esq.
         — Jameson, Esq.                   Wm. A. A. White, Esq.
         — Laing, Esq.                     Ralph Willet, Esq.
         P. H. Leathes, Esq.               R. W. Wilsonne, Esq.
         — Lincoln, Esq.                   — Wood, Esq.
         Benj. Nightingale, Esq.           C. Wyatt, Esq.

And in the Country the following :— 1

         The Duke de Blacas (Paris)        The Marquis Coningham
                                           The Marquis de Lagrange
         The Duke de Luynes (Paris)          (Paris)
         The Marquis de la Goy             General Ainsley
           (Paris)                         Lieut. Gen. John Ramsay
         The Earl of Derby                 Lieut. Col. Drummond
         The Earl of Pembroke              Lieut. Col. Leake
         The Earl of Asburnham             Major Dyson
         The Count Pourtalès               Capt.W. H. Smyth, R.N.
           (Paris)                         Doctor Frank (Vienna)
         Lord Visct. Holmesdale            The Rev. Archdn. Potts
         Lord Northwick                    Rev. Dr. Burney
         Lord Nugent                       Rev. Dr. Nott
         Count St. Genois (Vienna)         Rev. Mr. Dymock
         Baron Baillyet (Paris)            Rev. J. Martin
         Baron Roger (Paris)               Rev. Mr. Wellings
         The Baron Bretfleld (Vienna)      Rev. Fred. Blick
                                           Rev. E. I. Shepherd
         The Baron Hammerstein             Rev. Mr. Tufnel
           (Vienna)                        Rev. Frederick Pawsey
         The Lord Bp. of Litchfield        Rev. Jervis Kenrick
         The Dean of St. Patrick           Rev. C. P. Price
         The Provost of Eton               Rev. Rd. Wellesley
         Sir J. D. Astley, Bart.           Rev. Wm. Marshall
         Sir Geo. Chetwynd, Bart.          Rev. Mr. Dansey
         Sir Geo. Musgrave, Bart.          Rev. Mr. Coates
         Sir John Twisden, Bart.           Rev. Mr. Duke
         Gen. Louis de Traux (Vienna)      John Allen, Esq. (Oporto)
                                           Edward Acton, Esq.
         A. Arbuthnot, Esq. (Scotland)     John Hawkins, Esq.
                                           Edward Hallswell, Esq.
         — Anstice, Esq.                   William Haines, Esq.
         G. B. Baker, Esq.                 John Hall, Esq.
         Frederick Bauer, Esq.             — Heath, Esq.
         — Bagster, Esq.                   William Hoare, Esq.
         — Baron, Esq.                     Isidor Löwenstern, Esq.
         William Benson, Esq.                (Vienna)
         John Bluett, Esq.                 Q. Kennedy, Esq.
         William Beckford, Esq.            H. Knatchbull Esq.
         — Boddington, Esq.                R. N. Lee, Esq.
         — Borrel, Esq. (Smyrna)           — Lindsey,Esq.(Cork)
                                           C. W. Loscombe,. Esq.
         John Boase, Esq.                  — Lucas, Esq.
         J. Trotter Brockett, Esq.         George Marshall, Esq.
         L. H. Bunbury, Esq.               Josh. Mayer, Esq.
         James Dawkins, Esq.               — Marmin, Esq. (Boulogne)
         George Daubeny, Esq.
         Frederick Dickson, Esq.           M. Millingen, Esq. (Paris)
         Henry Durden, Esq.
         Prosper Dupré, Esq. (Paris)       — Mules, Esq.
                                           T. H. Newenkirchen, Esq.
         Andrew Fountaine, Esq.              (Frankfort)
         G. Griesbach, Esq                 — Norris, Esq.
         J. H. Griesbach, Esq.             John Parkinson, Esq.
         — Gollerman, Esq.                 William Peckover, Esq.
         — Promber, Esq. (Vienna)          —Steward, Esq. (Naples)
         Francis Sharpe, Esq.
         J. G. Pfister, Esq.               Thomas Sharpe, Esq.
         — Purcell, Esq.                   Wm. T. Spurrier, Esq.
         J. G. Reeves, Esq.                — Simmons, Esq.
         Robt. Reeve, Esq.                 Studley Vidal, Esq.
         — Revil, Esq. (Paris)             — Vint, Esq.
         A. Rhodes Rhodes, Esq.            Welzl de Wellenheim, Esq.
         B. Richard Sainthill, Esq.           Vienna
           (Cork)                          Charles Warne, Esq.
         — Sarjeant, Esq.                  Adam Young, Esq.
And many other gentlemen, whose names I do not remember; likewise a vast number who are unknown to me. The following are those who stand pre-eminent in the richness and value of their collections: —

To Thos. Thomas, Esq. the precedency must b aawarded; his cabinets are stored with selections from almost every sale which has taken place for some years past, including Greek and Roman, in gold, silver, and bronze, with splendid specimens of proof and pattern 2 English coins, chosen with great care and matured judgment. Indeed this gentleman possesses, I believe, not only duplicate, but triplicate coins of extraordinary rarity and value, not to be found in other collections.

Lord Northwick and Mr. James Broad (the latter is considered, and truly so, to be one of our first judges of antique medals) possess, as well as Mr. Burgon, very fine cabinets of Greek coins. Sir George Musgrave’s Roman gold, silver, and copper, are very splendid, both in the Consular and Imperial series. Mr. Brumell’s Roman in the precious metals, as well as in bronze, are very beautiful, and chosen with great taste. Capt. Smyth’s Roman large brass series are nearly all of them of the very first description; indeed this true friend to the medallic science spared no expence in their completion, and amongst them will be found coins of extraordinary rarity and beauty. The facility too with. which the owner permits collectors to view them, cannot be too much appreciated. The cabinets of Mr. Cuff are enriched with the choicest and most rare varieties of the early British, Saxon, English, Scotch, and Irish mintages, as well as of patterns and proofs of the milled money; likewise the milled money itself in all its differences; attached to which are British Colonial, the whole brought together without any reference as to expence: indeed, this collection, as a private one, is unequalled in the kingdom; there are in it many unique and unpublished coins, which will be found to be a great treasure to science, as I am justified in stating, that the liberal possessor of them, from his attachment to Numismatics, will permit them to be published.

Baron Bolland’s English gold coins are very splendid, both in proof and pattern pieces. General Ainsley has a fine series of Anglo-Gallic coins, which he procured from their native soil, whilst travelling on the Continent in the ancient paternal dominions of our monarchs of the Norman dynasty. He had those facilities for procuring them which are available to few others. The general has subsequently published a very desirable work on Anglo-Gallic coins, in which he introduces pieces of such extreme rarity as to have been almost or quite unknown before his discovery of them. The Dean of St. Patrick, besides a great variety of Roman and other ancient coins, has a fine and extensive assortment of the early British, Saxon, English and Irish, as well as a choice collection of English medals, more particularly of those relating to Ireland, conjointly with British and Irish antiques. If any part of the Dean’s collection may be named as pre-eminent, it is his ancient Irish coins, and antiques relating to Ireland, which do him great credit for the spirit of nationality with which they have been collected.

Sir John Twisden has got together a miscellaneous and very extensive collection of all sorts—a regular melange. It is impossible to say, from his arrangement of them, in which series he excels most; but from the prices which he has paid for some, and the quantity he has procured, he must have some fine coins by him. Col. Durrant has a splendid cabinet of fine English coins, as well as patterns and proofs in gold and silver. Very few collections can compete with that of the Rev. J. W. Martin’s Saxon, English, Scotch and Irish coins. Mr. Christopher Edmonds has a choice selection of very rare and valuable patterns and proofs. Almost every variety and date of our English milled money may be found in the cabinets of Mr. George Marshall (Birmingham). This gentleman is about giving to the public a grand desideratum, a work which no one has more ability to perform, namely, a list and description of all the known varieties of our milled money from Charles II. to William IV. This publication will be hailed with pleasure by the collectors of those pieces, as previous authors have contented themselves with giving a specimen or two only. One collection alone can compete with Mr. Marshall’s, and the proprietor (J. D. Cuff, Esq.) of that collection is anxious to afford the author every information, and lend his valuable aid towards supplying any deficiency that may appear in his own cabinets. Mr. Hawkins and Mr. Haggard in their collections of medals of and relating to England are unrivalled. The Provost of Eton College (Dr. J. Goodall) has certainly the most extensive assortment of Continental and other foreign coins in the kingdom, as well as some very fine medals. As before stated, Sir George Chetwynd’s collection of local and tradesmen’s tokens is the most complete in England. The splendid series of Napoleon medals will be found in the highest perfection in the cabinets of Dr. Burney and Joseph Mayer, Esq. of Liverpool. I had almost forgotten to mention the collection of Mr. Loscombe, whose cabinets are rich in fine Greek medals, and noble specimens of Roman medallions.

On the Continent, besides the Imperial cabinet at Vienna, there are in the same city several large and valuable collections of coins. The most extensive of. these, and probably of the whole of Austria, is that of the Aulic Counsellor, Welzl of Wellenheim, which comprises coins and medals of all ages and countries. The collection of General de Traux, though not so numerous, and consisting of modern coins only, is highly interesting from its accurate arrangement with reference to history and chronology; the series of reigns, of battles, sieges, and treaties of peace, having been most carefully attended to by its accomplished possessor. The collection of Dr. Frank is arranged in like manner, but combines also ancient pieces. It is more select, however, than extensive, and is distinguished for exquisite specimens of the coins of the Netherlands. The cabinet of Mr. Isidor Löwenstern, containing modern coins and medals, is remarkable for the scarcity and fine preservation of the pieces, and is particularly rich in those belonging to the French and English series.

The Collectors of Paris must not be forgotten, the chief of whom are the following noblemen and gentlemen, namely, the Duke de Blacas, the faithful servant and minister of the exiled monarch, Charles X. Indeed this distinguished nobleman limits himself to no expense in the completion of his series (Roman); a proof of this may be adduced in the extraordinary prices paid by him at a sale (Mr. Trattle’s) which took place a few years since.3 The Duke de Luynes, the Marquis de Lagrange, the Marquis de la Goy, the Count Pourtalès, Baron Baillett, Baron Roger, Mons. Dupré and Mons. Reuil, are, each of them eminently fortunate in possessing fine cabinets of antique coins.


Footnotes:

1 A few also are enumerated of well known collectors on the Continent.

2 It may not be irrelevant to describe here (again) the difference between proof coins, and those medals denominated pattern pieces. The former are coins struck with great care, and frequently in fine gold, or silver, and are generally the first impressions from the die. Patterns are those pieces struck and presented for approval, as specimens for the current coin.

3 An Aureus of Albinus brought the very heavy sum £74. Another coin, which should have been kept in this country, was likewise purchased by the duke; the piece alluded to is a gold Allectus, which was knocked down at £70. A proof in each instance of what competition will effect.


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