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Edward III quarter noble

This hammered gold quarter noble was found by Stephen Palmer. It’s a coin of Edward III and dates from a time when the English coffers were pretty full. The Battle of Crecy fought in 1346 and Poitiers fought in 1356 had both led to huge cash gains for the English. Much had been spent by the time this coin was struck but there was still plenty left, as is proven by the number of gold coins issued during the later years of the reign of King Edward III.

On the obverse of this quarter noble is a shield set within a tressure. The spandrels are vacant but on each cusp of is a trefoil with a pellet centre. On this side the legend reads +EDWARD DEI GRA REX AnGL.

On the reverse is a floriated cross with a fleur de lis on each tip. The cross is set within a tressure, which has nothing on the cusps or within the spandrels. In the centre is a tablet containing a quatrefoil. The legend on this side reads +EXALABITVR In GLORIA (the letter X is the treaty type).

The preceding detail allows me to say that this quarter noble was struck at Calais during the treaty period (1361-69). The clincher for the Calais mint is the quatrefoil in the centre of the reverse. This variety, with nothing over the shield on the obverse, is not given in the Standard Catalogue. However, I did trace an example in the Clarendon collection (lot 351), which was sold in 2006; the cataloguer didn’t realise that the coin was a significant rarity. Therefore, when submitting material to be sold at auction vendors should ensure that the auctioneer has the expertise required in order to catalogue coins correctly.


On this quarter noble the flan is slightly uneven and it looks to have been clipped. In terms of circulation wear it would grade good Fine. It’s a very rare coin, so a specialist collector should be willing to pay at least £500 in order to acquire it.

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