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Welcome to Historic Coinage

The site for English Hammered Coins


Historic Coinage is based in the heart of historic England with the aim to offer hammered coins, milled coins and antiquities to all numismatists and history enthusiasts throughout the world. Please take a moment to browse the categories on the left as well as the sections listed at the top of all pages.

History of Hammered Coins

Hammered coins were struck from a blank piece of metal with a hammer, by hand, between two dies. The die contains an inverse version of the desired image for the coin and was often made out of iron. A blank piece of metal, otherwise known as a planchet or a flan, was placed onto the lower die with the top die being hammered down onto the bottom one, leaving the impression of both sides on the previously blank piece of metal.

The bottom die was usually set into something sturdy, such as a log, to prevent much movement during the minting process and this is often referred to as a pile. As all coins were struck by hand each coin is unique in some respect. Some coins are double struck, off-centre or have been struck using an incorrect die. These errors, which are often human, can often mean that the coin is more interesting and uncommon, having both history and character.

Hammered coins were not just limited to the political centres of the kingdom but to various towns which would have been used for trade. The main mints consist of London, Canterbury, Durham and Bury St Edmunds but there are dozens more mints across the country such as Steyning, Berwick-upon-Tweed, Chester, Nottingham, Exeter and even Calais, which was conquered by Edward III in 1347 from the French.

Hammered coins were produced throughout many eras of English history; the Anglo-Saxons, Vikings, Normans, Plantagenet right through to the Tudor and Stuart houses. Historic Coinage offers you hammered coins of a wide variety of denominations such as the penny, groat, sixpence, halfgroat, halfpenny and farthing - all at affordable prices.

The many denominations of the hammered eras consist of copper, gold and silver hammered coins. The ‘AV’ often seen refers to aurum, i.e. gold, the ‘AR’ to argentum, i.e. silver, and the ‘AE’ refers to aes which means copper or bronze. The obverse refers to the side with the portrait of the king or queen whereas the reverse is the back.

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