Metal detectorist finds coin worth £7,000 from over 1,000 years ago
Metal detectorist finds rare coin worth £7,000 from the three-year reign of the boy king Edward the Martyr over 1,000 years ago
- A coin from the reign of Edward the Martyr has been found on the Isle of Wight
- The silver penny, worth £7,000, was unearthed by a metal detectorist in a field
- Edward was only 13 when he was crowned king after the death of father Edgar
- The Saxon coin was found five inches down by a retired council worker, 68
A rare coin from the short reign of the boy king Edward the Martyr over 1,000 years ago has been found by a metal detectorist – and it’s worth £7,000.
The silver penny was unearthed in a field on the Isle of Wight by the amateur treasure hunter.
The Saxon coin depicts the head of Edward the Martyr who was only 13-years-old when he was crowned king after the death of his father Edgar in 975AD.
A rare coin from the short reign of the boy king Edward the Martyr 1,000 years ago has been found by a metal detectorist on the Isle of Wight
He ruled England for three years before being assassinated in 978AD by supporters of his half-brother Aethelred.
The Saxon coin was found buried five inches down by a 68-year-old retired council worker who was on a club rally at the time.
The lucky finder, who is remaining anonymous, scraped off the mud to reveal the bust of Edward wearing a diadem and facing left.
On one side of the silver penny are the words ‘EDPEARD REX ANGLORX’ which translates as ‘Edward king of the English.
On the reverse is a small cross in the centre with the words ‘AELSTAN M’O CANT’ – Aelfstan moneyer of Canterbury – written around the edge.
There were 39 mints operating around the country at the time with three moneyers working at Canterbury.
Very few coins are known to survive from Edward’s reign, making the piece incredibly collectible for enthusiasts.
It has been consigned for sale with specialist auctioneers Dix Noonan Webb of London.
The Saxon coin was found buried five inches down by a 68-year-old retired council worker during a club rally
Jim Brown, coin specialist at Dix Noonan Webb, said: ‘With coins of this nature their value depends on two things – their rarity and their condition.
‘In this case we are lucky enough to have both so we would expect a fair bit of interest in it for sure.
‘It was found on the Isle of Wight but there is no indication of how it got there or anything like that.
‘There are number of possibilities as this was a time of quite a lot of trade between Britain and the continent so it may have been on it’s way to Europe to pay for something there.’
Edward was the son of King Edgar and his first wife, Aethelflaed.
The Saxon coin depicts the head of Edward the Martyr who was only 13-years-old when he was crowned king after the death of his father Edgar in 975AD
Although he was crowned king upon his father’s death in 975, some, including Edgar’s second wife Aelfthryth, supported his half-brother, Aethelred II.
On March 18, 978 Edward was en route to meet with Aethelred and Aelfthryth he was pulled from his horse in Corfe Castle, Dorset and murdered by their supporters.
He was hastily buried in nearby Wareham.
Edward was venerated as a saint and martyr after his death and his body was exhumed and taken to a shrine at Shaftesbury Abbey in 1001.
The shrine was lost during the dissolution of the monasteries in the 16th century, but his bones were rediscovered in 1931 and now reside at a shrine in the Russian Orthodox Church in Brookwood, Surrey.
The sale takes place on April 22.
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