Hammering out a fortune

Following the death of his brother Malcolm IV, William I, or William the Lion, became king of Scots in 1165. Reigning until 1214, William was known for being both physically and mentally strong, and for having a good head of red hair. The first Scottish coinage was during the reign of William’s father David and consisted of just hammered farthings, halfpennies and pennies. These persisted as the only coins well into the 14th century.

In McTear’s Coins & Banknotes Auction on 14 August, there is a William the Lion penny at lot 510. With an estimate of £40–70, this coin presents bidders with the opportunity to own a piece of Scotland’s earliest coinage history.

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Written by Sarah Cotter >>


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