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Penny of Stephen

The images of this coin came in from Roger Paul but it was found by one of his detecting colleagues: Bob Piercy. I was asked for my opinion as to the possible value of this find.

Even experienced detectorists have gaps in their collections, one of which is often something dating from the Norman period. If this was the case with Bob then a gap has now been filled.

Bob’s find is a penny of Stephen, who grasped the throne of England soon after the death of Henry I. You can read more about the life and times of this king elsewhere on this website.

On the obverse of this penny is the head of Stephen with a sceptre in front. On the reverse is a cross moline with a fleur de lis in each angle. The type, the least rare, is named after the design of the reverse but is also referred to as the ‘Watford’ type as a large hoard (1,127 coins) was found there in 1818.


Sadly, the coin is in a poor state of preservation. The legend is mostly flat on both sides, it is badly bent, there is an edge chip and quite a large piece is missing. In its present condition my price range would be no higher that £50 – £60. However, on the plus side, it’s better to have a Stephen penny in poor condition than none at all.

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