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Mary, Groat

This is another find from the group of three that came in from Paul Marland. It’s a groat of Mary, which (as I’ve said before) is one of the pre-Elizabethan Tudor coins most frequently unearthed by detectorists. A huge number must have been struck, which is strange as all the other silver coins of Mary are very rare.

In 1553 and 1554, when the groats were put into circulation, the better off were catered for. However poorer folk were not, as for more than anything else they needed small change.


As I’m always saying, the collectors of today focus more than anything else on the condition that coins are in. It cannot be stressed too strongly that the main factor in relation to the value of any coin is its state of preservation. There is a ready market for specimens in good condition. The same coins in the lower grades can struggle to attract a buyer, even when catalogue and previous sale prices are heavily discounted.

The groat pictured here must have circulated for a good length of time, as the obverse is only Fair and has an edge defect; the reverse is better and would grade Fine. A point in favour of Paul’s find is that it is flat and not twisted out-of-shape, which is often the case with those that turn up as detecting finds. As it stands, I would suggest that to a collector it could be worth up to £50.

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