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Penny of Offa

The detectorist who unearthed this coin wished to remain anonymous. It’s a penny of King Offa of Mercia and it is in above average condition for a detecting find.

On the obverse, in three lines, is M OFFA REX. In two lines on the reverse, with a dotted line with a cross at each end between them, is V V I N (reversed) O (shaped like a lozenge) and an Anglo-Saxon D. Therefore, the moneyer is WINOTH. This penny is an example of the heavy coinage of Offa and it was struck at London.

In The Coinage of Offa and His Contemporaries by Derek Chick (edited by Mark Blackburn and Rory Naismith) this type is listed as number 215. When this reference work was published in 2010 only a single specimen was known of type 215 and it was a fragment. The specimen illustrated here might be the only known intact specimen of this particular type. Having said this, many other pennies of King Offa are also of great rarity.


The coin is well struck and looks to be in VF condition, so a likely pre-sale auction estimate would be in the region of £2,500.

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