Vervel of Charles I

A silver vervel or hawking ring with the Royal coat of arms on the bezel and engraved to the exterior in italics “King Charles”.

It was found by detectorist Roy Davis on a Saturday morning in the late 1980s. He located it with his Compass 77B on a spoil heap from the river Thames near Billingsgate. The find site is not far from the Tower of London and the auctioneer suggests that it is likely that Charles I kept a number of birds of prey there.

As Roy explained before the sale: “The tiny ring was heavily encrusted when found and I thought nothing of it, so I put it aside. Going through some old finds recently I decided to clean the ring and saw it was inscribed with a royal coat of arms and the legend Charles King.”

He plans to share the proceeds of the sale between his children. “I am very pleased; it was an excellent result, and I was amazed how much international interest it attracted. Before the sale, I had calls about it from all over the world!

Nigel Mills, Artefact and Coin expert at Noonans added “This was a very exciting find with only one other known example in the British Museum, as well as other vervels that belonged to Henry VIII, Elizabeth I and James I. Even though it was so small the Royal connection gave it historical significance and justified it selling for more than double the estimate.”

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