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Type IIIa groat of Henry VII

This very recent find was unearthed by Michael Young, who said he couldn’t work out if it was a groat or a halfgroat and which Henry is on the obverse?

Firstly, the coin is said to measure 25mm in diameter so it must be a groat. And, the king on the obverse is Henry VII.

There are several different types and varieties of groats of Henry VII. On the obverse of this one the king wears a crown with two jewelled arches, the letter E is Greek (like a reversed number 3) and the mint mark is a heraldic cinquefoil. The letter E on the reverse are also Greek , the letter M is Roman rather than the more usual Lombardic and the mint mark is not altogether clear.

The characteristics listed above point towards this groat being an example of type IIIa, which is listed in the Standard Catalogue as number 2198. This is the rarest of the standard type groats of Henry VII.


The coin has been in circulation for some time but it is still in Fine condition. As it is a rarity it would be of great interest to specialist collectors, so a pre-sale auction estimate would be unlikely to be any lower that £250 to £300.

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3 months ago

Good ID. This is the 2nd one I’ve seen online that’s correctly identified. I’ve just acquired one myself that was misidentified. Searching the Portable antiquities website and many auction lots was bringing up type II coins and IIIb being identified as type IIIa. It’s surprising how many people miss the hair styles or say the escallop mm is cinquefoil on worn coins. The Greek E and Roman M is also a giveaway from the other types.

Last edited 3 months ago by Stu