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14 Jul 2020

Harold Harefoot

Medieval Coins | World_Coin_Nut

Here's an unexpected find at this month's local coin show. The picture could be better but it is a pretty good representation of what the coin looks like in hand.Harold I is not nearly as well know as his father Cnut the Great. This is probably because of his short 5-year reign and the fact that he wasn't the obvious successor to his father.ANGLO-SAXON, Kings of All England. Harold I Harefoot.1035-1040.AR PennyDiameter: 17mmWeight 0.87 grJewel Cross type (BMC i, Hild. A). Suðgeweorc (Southwark) mint; moneyer, Leofric. Struck 1036-1038. +Obverse: HAR OLD RE, diademed bust leftReverse: + LEORIC O ((NN) SVÐG:, cross composed of four ovals united at base by two concentric circles enclosing a pellet.SCBI 40 (Stockholm), 532 var. (Rev. Legend); Hild. 924 var. (Same); BMC -; North 802; SCBC 1163A short history adapted from Wikipedia:Harold I (1016–1040), also known as Harold Harefoot, was King of England from 1035 to 1040. Harold's nickname is first recorded as "Harefoh" or "Harefah" in the twelfth century in the history of Ely Abbey, and according to some late medieval chroniclers, it meant that he was fleet of foot.The son of Cnut the Great and Ælfgifu of Northampton, Harold was elected regent of England following the death of his father in 1035. He initially ruled England in place of his brother Harthacnut, who was stuck in Denmark due to a rebellion in Norway which had ousted their brother Svein. Although Harold had wished to be crowned king since 1035, Æthelnoth, Archbishop of Canterbury, refused to do so. It was not until 1037 that Harold, supported by earl Leofric and many others, was officially proclaimed king. The same year, Harold's two step-brothers Edward and Alfred returned to England with a considerable military force. Alfred was captured by Earl Godwin, who had him seized and delivered to an escort of men loyal to Harefoot. While en route to Ely, he was blinded and soon after died of his wounds.Harold died in 1040, having ruled just five years; his half-brother Harthacnut soon returned and took hold of the kingdom peacefully. Harold was originally buried in Westminster, but Harthacnut had his body dragged up and thrown into a fen (marsh), as well as then thrown into the river Thames, but it was after a short time picked up by a fisherman, immediately taken to the Danes, and honorably buried by them in their cemetery at London.This coin reminded me of a question of have never seen addressed here. What is considered the cutoff between a coin being considered an ancient versus medieval?One opinion is that anything after the fall of the Roman Empire is no longer an ancient coin. Still sounds pretty ancient to me. Since anything after the year 1600 is considered modern that means that medieval coins lasted for over 1000 years. Is that correct? I don't know but it would be interesting to hear other opinions.

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04 Jul 2020

Hamburg Double Wedding Thaler

Coins-World | World_Coin_Nut

Here is another one of those items that I didn’t know I wanted until I saw one. For multiple Thalers, you could almost call this common. Of course, none of these are. As many of you know I specialize in German States coinage. This Double Thaler from Hamburg came up for sale in a recent auction. It was one of those coins that as soon as I saw it I knew I had to have it.Gaedechens 1600; KM 147 (3 Thaler)Struck ca. 1650​Obverse: A elegantly dressed bride and groom shake hands; hovering above it in a glory is the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove and the name Jehovah. Transcription; QUOS DEUS CONIUNXIT HOMO NON SEPARET. Man should not divide what God put together.Reverse: The wedding to Cana, in a smaller format, just like on No. 3, only with the difference that the groom wears a feather hat here. Transcription: JESUS CHRIST. MAKE WATER WINE IN CANA. GAL. 10. 11. The Munzmeister mark with the two cross-shaped zain hooks.Diameter: 60mmWeight: 57.42 g12hThe Marriage at Cana:The transformation of water into wine at the Marriage at Cana or Wedding at Cana is the first miracle attributed to Jesus in the Gospel of John. In the Gospel account, Jesus, his mother, and his disciples are invited to a wedding, and when the wine runs out, Jesus delivers a sign of his glory by turning water into wine.The location of Cana has been subject to debate among biblical scholars and archaeologists. Multiple villages in Galilee are possible candidates.John 2:1-11 states that while Jesus was at a wedding in Cana with his disciples, the party ran out of wine during the Seudat Nissuin. Jesus' mother told Jesus, "They have no wine," and Jesus replied, "Oh Woman, what has this to do with me? My hour has not yet come." His mother then said to the servants, "Do whatever he tells you". Jesus ordered the servants to fill containers with water and to draw out some and take it to the chief steward. After tasting it, without knowing where it came from, the steward remarked to the bridegroom that he had departed from the custom of serving the best wine first by serving it last. John adds: "Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee, and it revealed his glory, and his disciples believed in him".If you want some fun and aren’t easily offended do a google search of this event and the varying viewpoints of its meaning. One of the chat boards I came across makes the sometimes-spirited discussions on CT seem pretty tame.Picture #2 14th-centuryMarriage at Canaby Giotto di Bondone​Otto Christian Gaedechens was an 18th-century collector who wrote a series of 3 books on the coins and medals of Hamburg. Until about October of 2019 I wasn’t aware of these books. That is until I purchased the below coin. I found attributions online that said it was a G#1586. I had no idea what that was until receiving some assistance from some numismatic friends. If you are into German States coinage, especially those from Hamburg, it is well worth the investment to purchase these books. I splurged and bought a nice leather-bound reprint. The originals are very scarce.From Gaedechens: (See picture 4)Auch diesen Thaler besitzet Herr Bartels und haben wir ersteren 2 Loth schwerbefundeu. Herr Bartels hesitzt uberdem noch einen zweiten ahnlicheu, 2 Loth schwereu einfsachen Thaler, auf dem man auf dem Averse zwischen den heiden Brautleuten die Gestalt des Heilandes erblickt, der das Paar einsegnet. Ueber ihm in einer Glorie der Name Gottes. Die unten links aufangende Umschrist lautet: QUOS DEUS CONIUNXIT HOMO NON SEPARET; vor HOMO die beiden krezweis liegenden Zainhaken, jedoch ohne Kleeblatt. Auf der anderen Seite die Hochzeit, die Mutter Maria sitzet zwischen Braut and Brautigam; rechts im Hintergrunde noch einige undeutlich ausgedruckte Personen. Umschrift: JESUS CHRISTUS MACHET WASSER ZU GUDEM WEINN. JOHA. Ein nicht zu erkennendes Zeichen.Google translation:Mr. Bartels also owns this thaler and we found the first two lots difficult. Herr Bartels also sits a second similar thaler, 2 loth heavy, in which one can see the figure of the Savior on the avenue between the pagan bride and groom, who blesses the couple. Above him in a glory the name of God. The outline at the bottom left is: QUOS DEUS CONIUNXIT HOMO NON SEPARET; in front of HOMO the two zain hooks lying in front of each other, but without cloverleaf. On the other hand, the wedding, the mother Maria sits between the bride and groom; on the right in the background a few unclearly printed people. Transcription: JESUS CHRIST MAKES WATER GOOD WINE. JOHA. An unrecognizable sign.As much as I like the Gaedechens books they are a little disappointing to me when it comes to the historical background of the designs. As you can see above, the text is pretty much talking about who else has one in their collection and description. I have only done translations on the coins that I own so that may not be consistent throughout the books.I would like to hear other opinions on the purpose of this piece. As I mentioned earlier it is one of the more common varieties of multiple Thalers. The logical assumption, to me, is that these were used as wedding gifts. These would have been limited to only marriages in the wealthiest families because this would have represented a significant amount of money.It is interesting to me that Krause calls this a 3 Thaler but all auction listings I found call it a double Thaler.

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