FAQs

What makes a coin valuable?

Plus Icon

I have coins to sell, what’s the next step?

Plus Icon

How will my purchases be shipped?

Plus Icon

What happens if I’m not entirely happy with my purchase?

Plus Icon
JM33323

Stephen Penny Watford type, reads PERERIC - for Henry of Anjou

Regular price £5,250
Regular price Sale price £5,250

Stephen (1135-54),silver Penny, PERERIC variant legend (reattributed to 1151-54), cross moline Watford type, Lincoln Mint, Moneyer Rawulf, crowned bust with sceptre right, legend and beaded border surrounding, +PERERIC:,rev.cross moline, lis in each angle, legend and beaded border surrounding, +RAPVLF:O- ---O:, weight 1.09g (SCBI 27 [Lincolnshire] :948; Allen, M, BNJ 'Mints and moneyers of England and Wales' 2012, p.112; Mack 45;H. R. Mossop. 26; N.928; S.1279). Fully centred strike on a symmetrical flan, the obverse legend uncharacteristically clear and concise in its reading, pleasing portrait with a comprehensive reverse. Good very fine for issue, extremely rare.

The late Marion Archibald of the British Museum, favoured the equation of the "PERERIC M" legend with a form of the Anglo-Norman word Emperereiz (empress) followed by the initial m (Matilda), despite the fact that some mint towns issuing "pereric" coins were not under the control of Matilda; Archibald postulated that mints who had ordered obverse dies from the Fitz Otto workshop after William Fitz Otto had personally declared for Matilda were thus inscribed and issued in the summer of 1141 (BNJ 1991, pp.15-16).

However, the most recent snippet on the mystery of this legend was written by the late Michael Sharp in the April 2012 edition of the Spink Numismatic Circular, where he wrote up as a tribute to the late Roderick Palmer domicile of France, who had collected Anglo-Gallic coins the decipherment of the legend. Palmer had remarked in his field of interest that "ERIC" was written in Anglo-Gallic coin legends meaning "HENRY" as demonstrated in the reign of Henry IV. The addition of "PER" on the front would therefore mean "For Henry" likely referring to Henry of Anjou (later King Henry II) the son of Empress Matilda, with the "M" after for Matilda his mother. This would date the coins to after 1151 when Matilda's husband Geoffrey Plantagenet, the previous Count of Anjou, had died on 7thSeptember passing the title to their son Henry. The variety like we have offered herewith omits the "M" so just "For Henry" and therefore perhaps issued later than with the "M" for Matilda as he no longer has to reference his lineage to Matilda Empress. This would seem to be the most likely explanation for these irregular and rare pieces, no longer in the name of Stephen.

The reign of Stephen is perhaps one of the most interesting numismatically as England descends towards Civil War in the latter part of the reign, with an increasing volume in types of coinage with many poorly struck as allegiances to the King, the Empress or the various noblemen wax and wane. The first so-called Watford type is the most abundant due to the fact that a major hoard of this type turned up in the Watford area in Victorian times, rather than something describing the design, but a well struck piece is hard to find.

Often referred to as Stephen of Blois he was born in either 1092 or 1096 he was a younger son of Stephen-Henry the Count of Blois who died whilst Stephen was young, he subsequently being raised by his mother Adela the daughter of William the Conqueror. He was placed into the English court of his uncle Henry Beauclerc, where he rose in prominence and was granted extensive lands, he became Count of Boulogne by his marriage in 1125 to Matilda inheriting estates there and in Kent making the couple one of the wealthiest in England. He had earlier escaped drowning in the White Ship disaster of 1120 which claimed the life of William Aethling the son of Henry I, leaving some doubt over the succession to the English throne despite Henry nominating his daughter Matilda as heir. Later, upon the news of Henry's passing on 1stDecember 1135, Stephen immediately crossed over the English Channel and with the help of his brother Henry Bishop of Winchester and Abbot of Glastonbury he took the throne declaring the preservation of order across the Kingdom took priority over any earlier oaths to support his cousin Empress Matilda. His early years were successful ones despite some attacks in the north from David I of Scotland, from Welsh rebels in the west and from Empress Matilda's husband Geoffrey from the east. In 1138 Robert of Gloucester the half-brother of Empress Matilda rebelled threatening civil war. Stephen fiercely defended his rule with support from Waleran de Beaumont, arresting a group of bishops. However, in 1139 when the Empress and Robert of Gloucester invaded Stephen was unable to crush the revolt with them taking hold of the south-west of England. Stephen was captured at the Battle of Lincoln in 1141, lost Normandy and abandoned by many of his followers, but was subsequently released after his wife Matilda with William of Ypres captured Robert at the Rout of Winchester, but the civil war continued to drag on unabated. Stephen wanted his son Eustace to succeed him and tried to convince the church to crown Eustace in advance, but Pope Eugene III refused causing disruption within the clergy. In 1153 Empress Matilda's son Henry invaded building a powerful alliance of barons to support him for the throne. The armies met at Wallingford with neither side keen to fight and negotiations began to find peace hastened by the sudden death of Eustace on the 17thAugust at Bury St Edmunds, and resulting in the Treaty of Winchester where Stephen recognized Henry as heir. Stephen passed away on 25thOctober 1154 from a stomach disease whilst at Dover and is buried at Faversham Abbey.

The City of Lincoln situated on the north bank of the River Witham some 33 miles north east of Nottingham was occupied by the Danes in 918 but the army there submitted to Edward the Elder and in 942 was one of the Five Boroughs. William I built a castle here in 1067 and the minster of St Mary was taken by Remigius of Dorchester as his cathedral in 1072. Later Rannulf the Earl of Chester and William de Roumare Earl of Loncoln, seized the castle to hold against King Stephen in 1140. The King besieged the castle and was captured in defeat at the Battle of Lincoln with the town sacked and burnt. The castle was later surrendered to Stephen by Rannulf who three years later granted it back to him.

Minting activity is thought to commence here with the "St Martin" coinage and then from Eadred to Henry III. In the middle of the reign of Henry I the signature of the Lincoln Mint changes to NICOLE until the end of Stephen's first type and in some later short cross coinage, this being a French name for the city seen in some mediaeval documents, with Lincolnia being the name in Latin.

No reviews yet

FAQs

What makes a coin valuable?

Plus Icon

I have coins to sell, what’s the next step?

Plus Icon

How will my purchases be shipped?

Plus Icon

What happens if I’m not entirely happy with my purchase?

Plus Icon
1 of 4