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GM25815

Harthacanute Penny, arm and sceptre type, Dorchester Mint, Godwine

Regular price £15,000
Regular price Sale price £15,000

Harthacanute (1035-42), silver Penny, arm and sceptre type (1040-42), Dorchester Mint, Moneyer Godwine, diademed bust left with arm and sceptre, legend commences at top in full name, +HARÐ CNVT RE, rev. pellet at centre of quadrilateral with pellets on apexes, all over short voided cross which meets inner linear circle, legend and outer beaded border surrounding, +CODPINE ON DORCE:, weight 1.10g (SCBI 40:1596 Stockholm IV; Parsons 36; BMC type II; N.811; S.1168). With an old cabinet tone, reverse a touch off-centre with a couple of peck marks, good very fine and extremely rare with a great provenance.

The legends translate as "Harthacanute King" on obverse and on the reverse "Godwine of Dorchester."

Of the 230 reverse legend readings H. A. Parsons records in his article "The Anglo-Saxon Coins of Harthacnut" British Numismatic Journal volume 11, 1915, this is the only one of this moneyer in this type. According to North the Dorchester Mint operated with only two moneyers in this reign and only for only two types.

Harthacanute was the only son from the union of Canute and Emma widow of King Aethelred II who had married in 1017 and he was presumably born in 1018. He became nominal ruler of Denmark in 1023 around the age of 5 with Thorkell the Tall as regent, and subsequently absent from England for most of his life. When his Father Canute died in 1035 Harthacanute was 17 years of age but could not leave Denmark for fear of invasion from Norway. In England he had support for Kingship from Godwin of Wessex and his mother Emma in Winchester. Subsequently in 1037 Godwin crossed over to side with Harold, and Emma fled across the channel to Bruges, where Harthacanute eventually joined her with his fleet in late 1039. After agreeing terms with Magnus of Norway on the basis as they were both childless, that whoever passed away first would inherit the other's Kingdom. Subsequently Magnus outlived Harthacanute and would later claim that their regnal agreement included England as well as Denmark. It was at this time that Emma brought her son by Aethelred II Edward, later the Confessor, to meet with Harthacanute. Before the fleet could embark Harold died in March of 1040 avoiding any conflict. Harthacanute was crowned on the 18thJune 1040 at Canterbury and named Edward as his heir in 1041. Harthacanute died suddenly on the 8thJune 1042 after imbibing too much at a wedding celebration aged circa 24.

Situated in Dorset on the River From some six miles north of Weymouth, a Royal house was in use here at the time of Aethelstan, with a castle later on in the 12-13thCenturies. Minting activity occurs from the reign of Aethelred II to Baronial civil unrest in the time of King Stephen and there is a die link with Warminster in the reign of Edward the Confessor.

Provenance:

Ex Hyman Montagu, Anglo-Saxon second portion, Sotheby, 11th May 1896, lot 106, sold for £9/2/6d.

Ex Henry Symonds (d.1933), Glendining, 26th September 1973, lot 12.

Ex A. H. Baldwin and Son Ltd. purchased 1978.

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