Medieval English Hammered Farthings - Edward I: Berwick mint

This online guide is designed to help

  • Metal Detector enthusiasts
  • Museum Curators
  • Coin Dealers & Collectors

accurately identify and classify their English Hammered Farthings.


Overview:

There was a mint set up in Berwick by David I of Scotland. Scottish coins were struck here until the town was captured and sacked by Edward I on March 30, 1296. Following the battle of Stirling Bridge on September 11 1297, the town was recaptured by the Scots, although they failed to recapture the castle. In the Spring of 1298 the English army returned and on the news of their approach, the Scots withdrew from the town. The English then occupied Berwick until 1318. After the battle of Halidon Hill in July 1333 it once again was occupied by the English. The great majority of the coins (except Class 5 of Edward II) were struck from local dies and all the farthings produced at Berwick during this reign are extremely rare.



Edward I Farthing Berwick - 1bEdward I Farthing Berwick - 1b

Date¹: 1296-1297
Mint: Berwick-on-Tweed
Type: Type 1

Diameter: 12-13.5mm
Weight: 0.38g (5½ grains²)

Obverse: +EDWARDVS REX
    Trifoliate crown. "Wide" face. Lombardic E in legend.
Reverse: VILL ABE REV VICI
    "Long Cross" with three pellets in each quarter.
    Roman E in legend.

Reference(s):
  N.1091
  S.1451
  Blunt. Type 1
  North Syll. 1160
Scarcity: Extremely Rare

Guide Price:
  £100 (Fine)
  £300 (Very Fine)



Edward I Farthing Berwick - 1bEdward I Farthing Berwick - 1b

Date¹: 1296-1297
Mint: Berwick-on-Tweed
Type: Type 1

Diameter: 12-13.5mm
Weight: 0.19g (5½ grains²)

Obverse: +EDWARD[VS REX]
    Trifoliate crown. "Narrow" face. Lombardic E in legend.
    Legend indistinct after EDWARD, but appears to have a further "A".
Reverse: VILL ABE REV VICI
    "Long Cross" with three pellets in each quarter.
    Roman E in legend.

Reference(s):
  N.1091
  S.1451
  Blunt. Type 1
  North Syll. 1161
Scarcity: Extremely Rare

Guide Price:
  £100 (Fine)
  £300 (Very Fine)


RECAPTURE of BERWICK by the English - Spring 1298.


Date¹: c.1298
Mint: Berwick-on-Tweed
Type: Type 3a

Diameter: 12-13.5mm
Weight: 0.25g (5½ grains²)

Obverse: +EDWAR ANGL DNS hB
    Trifoliate crown, with "narrow" face and pellet on breast.
    Same legend as the halfpence. Lombardic  E  in legend. Lombardic
    "N" in legend.
Reverse: VILL ABE REV VICI
    "Long Cross" with three pellets in each quarter.
    Roman E in legend.

Reference(s):
  N.1092
  S.1451
  Blunt. Type 3a
Scarcity: Extremely Rare

Guide Price:
  £100 (Fine)
  £300 (Very Fine)

Note:The description of lot 407 in the Montagu auction suggests that it may have been Type 3a - but no example has been seen by the author.


Edward I Farthing Berwick - 3bEdward I Farthing Berwick - 3b

Date¹: c.1298
Mint: Berwick-on-Tweed
Type: Type 3b

Diameter: 12-13.5mm
Weight: 0.34g (5½ grains²)

Obverse: +EDWAR ANGL DNS hYB
    Trifoliate crown, with "narrow" face and pellet on breast.
    Same legend as the halfpence. Lombardic E in legend. Roman
    "N" in legend.
Reverse: VILL ABE REV VICI
    "Long Cross" with three pellets in each quarter.
    Roman E in legend.

Reference(s) *:
  N.1092
  S.1451
  Blunt. Type 3b
  North Syll. 1162
Scarcity: Extremely Rare

Guide Price:
  £100 (Fine)
  £300 (Very Fine)

Sold by:
  • (March '04) A fine example of this coin, but with severely overstruck legends on both sides (see photo), was sold by HistoryInCoins (id: uksales) on eBay for £37.00.



Date: 1298-1307
Mint: Berwick-on-Tweed
Type: Type 3b(i)

Diameter: 12-13.5mm
Weight: 0.25g (5½ grains²)

Obverse: +EDWR ANGL DNS hYB
    Trifoliate crown. With "narrow" face. Shorter legend
    as on the halfpence. Lombardic E in legend.
Reverse: VILL ABE REV VICI
    "Long Cross" with three pellets in each quarter.
    Roman E in legend.

Reference(s):
  N.1092
  S.1451
  Blunt. Type 3b
Scarcity: Extremely Rare

Guide Price:
  £100 (Fine)
  £300 (Very Fine)



Edward I Farthing Berwick - 4aEdward I Farthing Berwick - 4a

Date¹: 1300-1310
Mint: Berwick-on-Tweed
Type: Type 4a

Diameter: 12-13.5mm
Weight: 0.25g (5½ grains²)

Obverse: +EDWAR ANGL DnS hYB
    Trifoliate crown. With "narrow" face. Shorter legend
    as on the halfpence. Lombardic E in legend. Pellet on breast.
Reverse: VILL ABE REV VICI
    "Long Cross" with three pellets in each quarter.
    Roman E in legend.

Reference(s):
  N.1092
  S.1451
  Blunt. Type IV
Scarcity: Extremely Rare

Guide Price:
  £100 (Fine)
  £300 (Very Fine)



Can't find your coin?

¹ NORTH, JJ. 1989: Sylloge of Coins of the British Isles - 39. The J.J.
  North Collection: Edwardian English Silver Coins 1279-1351
(London,
  Spink). pp. 278
² SEABY, BA. (ed) 1948: Notes on English Silver Coins 1066-1648 to
  help collectors in their classification
(London, Seaby). pp 87


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