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Alfred gets great results at DNW

April 25 saw Dix Noonan Webb offer the first tranche of Marvin Lessen’s wide-ranging “North Yorkshire Moors Collection of British Coins.” Offered were 290 lots of Iron Age, Roman Imperial, early Anglo-Saxon and Anglo-Viking coins. The sale also included the “Parcel of Coins” from the Cuerdale Hoard assigned to Sir John Campbell. Coin quality was to the fore. Desirable rarities were scattered throughout.

Top billing went to a delightful aEF, Phase III, London monogram, rare silver penny of Alfred the Great (S-1061). This issue was relatively short-lived. It took place about 880 C.E. and represents the resumption of Alfred’s control over the city following the death of Ceolwulf II, last king of an independent of Mercia.

The rare and desirable London monogram silver penny of Alfred the Great (S-1061) that sold for $28,434 graded aEF. (Image courtesy and © DNW)

The high-quality rarity went to the block with an estimate of £8,000-10,000 and was quickly bid up to $28,434 [£20,400].

Like all good auction catalogs, this one held a sleeper. Lot 76 consisted of two antoninianii, both “C” mint and showing Salus standing left, holding scepter and feeding a serpent rising from an altar (RIC-400). One was 4.64 g and graded “fine or better.” The other weighed 3.53 g and was described as “excavated.” They carried an estimate of £100-200 but galloped away to realize $26,762 [£19,200].

For your reporter, the first 40-odd lots were enchanting. Many bore the first numismatic mention and representations of Britannia. Several are presented here:

First numismatic mention of Britannia: aureus of Claudius, 46-7 C.E., showing a triumphal arch celebrating the Emperor’s conquest of Britain (S-633). In aVF, it realized $10,872. [£7,800]. (Image courtesy and © DNW)

Sestertius of Antoninus Pius, 143-4 C.E., showing Britannia seated left on rock with shield and standard, the classic pose for millions of British copper coins (S-643A). In aF, it took $2,174 [£1,560] on a £200-300 estimate. (Image courtesy and © DNW)

First representation of the goddess Britannia on Roman coinage commemorating Hadrian’s victories in Britain over the Brigantes. As of 119-21 C.E. (S-637A), it realized $1,087 [£780] in fine. (Image courtesy and © DNW)

Didrachm of Claudius depicting the Emperor in triumphal quadriga (S-634A), which sold for $635 [£456] graded “fair to fine.” (Image courtesy and © DNW)


Full catalog details and prices realized may be found on the DNW website: www.dnw.co.uk.


This article was originally printed in World Coin News. >> Subscribe today.


More Collecting Resources

• The Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1601-1700 is your guide to images, prices and information on coins from so long ago.

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