Richard II Pennies

Classification

 

This section deals with the classification of coins struck at London, Durham and York with dies made at London. For the classification of York coins struck with locally made dies, select Local Dies from the menu bar above.  It should be noted that mules exist with their obverse from a London-made die and their reverse from a locally made die, or vice versa. For further information regarding mules, see the section entitled Identification Aids.

 

For details of the letter styles and other criteria for identification referenced below, see the section entitled Identification Aids.

Some of the coin types that follow are illustrated by a single image; others are illustrated by two or more images within a sliding gallery. In the latter case, the additional images may be accessed by clicking on the navigation arrows which appear when the mouse-pointer is hovered over the initially displayed image. All images can be clicked to provide an enlarged view.

London

Type Ia (1377-c.1390) - Spink 1686; North 1325

 

This type corresponds to Purvey's Ia2 and Ia6 of York. The coins have early style lettering with a Gothic N on the obverse, and reverse-barred N's on the reverse. Obverse legends have double-saltire stops between the words and reverse legends have a saltire before CIVI. Pellet clusters in the angles of the reverse cross are of early type with the pellets separated from each other. There is no mark on the king's breast.

Obv. legend:  RICARDVS REX ANGLIE
Rev. legend:  CIVI TAS LON DON

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Type Ia* (1377-c.1390) - Spink 1688; North 1326

 

This type corresponds to Purvey's Ia4 of York. The coins have early style lettering with a Gothic N on the obverse and reverse-barred N's on the reverse. Obverse legends have double-saltire stops between the words and reverse legends have a saltire before CIVI. Pellet clusters in the angles of the reverse cross are of early type with the pellets separated from each other. There is a small fleur-de-lis on the king's breast.

 

Obv. legend:  RICARD REX ANGL Z FRA(N)C
Rev. legend:  CIVI TAS LON DON

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Type IV (c.1390-1399) - Spink 1689; North 1327

 

Type IV pennies have a distinctive bust with 'puffed out' hair, as found on heavy coinage pennies of Henry IV.  They have late style lettering with Gothic N's and a fractured bottom right serif to the letter 'I'. Obverse legends have double-saltire stops between the words. Pellet clusters in the angles of the reverse cross are of late type with conjoined pellets. 

Obv. legend:  RICARD REX ANGLIE
Rev. legend:  CIVI TAS LON DON

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Durham

Type Ia (1377-c.1390) - Spink 1697; North 1328

 

This type corresponds to Purvey's Ia4 of York. The coins have early style lettering with a Gothic N on the obverse and a Gothic M and N on the reverse. Obverse legends have double-saltire stops between the words, and coins from one reverse die have a saltire before CIVI. Pellet clusters in the angles of the reverse cross are of early type with the pellets separated from each other. There is a small fleur-de-lis on the king's breast.

 

Obv. legend:  RICARDVS REX ANGLIE
Rev. legend:  CIVI TAS DVN OLM

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York (London Dies)

Type Ia (1377-c.1390) - Spink 1690; North 1329 (a)

 

This type encompasses Purvey's Ia1 to Ia6. The coins have early style lettering, and almost all have a cross or lis on the breast. Some reverses have a saltire before CIVI, or rarely a quatrefoil after ACI, and some have an extra pellet in the cluster below EBO or EBOR. The quatrefoil at the centre of the cross is of early 'four-cell' form. The mint name is divided by the cross in either of two ways, as shown below. (See Type Ia York note.)

 

Obv. legend:  RICARDVS REX ANGLIE
Rev. legend:  CIVI TAS EBO RACI or CIVI TAS EBOR ACI

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Type Ib (1377-c.1390) - Spink 1690; North 1329 (b)

 

Type Ib coins are readily identifiable by their extended obverse legend, the presence of small pellets by the king's shoulders and an additional pellet in the cluster under EBO. They have early style lettering, and there is a pellet before the E of EBO. There is a cross on the king's breast. The mint name of true Ib coins is divided by a cross-end in the way indicated below.

 

Obv. legend:  RICARDVS REX ANGLIE Z
Rev. legend:  CIVI TAS EBO RACI

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Type IIa (1377-c.1390) - Spink 1691; North 1329 (c)

 

Coins of Type IIa are generally as coins of Type Ia, except that there is no mark on the king's breast. There is, however, a line below the breast. Some IIa reverses have a saltire before CIVI on the reverse, on others it is not present. The mint name of true IIa coins is divided by a cross-end in the way indicated below.

 

Obv. legend:  RICARDVS REX ANGLIE
Rev. legend:  CIVI TAS EBO RACI

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Type IIb (1377-c.1390) - Spink 1691; North 1329 (d) 

 

Coins of Type IIb are similar to those of Type IIa, except that there is no line below the breast. Some IIb reverses have a saltire before CIVI on the reverse, on others it is not present. The mint name of true IIb coins is divided by a cross-end in the way indicated below.

 

Obv. legend:  RICARDVS REX ANGLIE
Rev. legend:  CIVI TAS EBO RACI

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Type IIIa (c.1390-1399) - Spink 1695; North 1629 (e)

 

Type III coins have a new bust with close hair, a flatter crown and a cross on the breast. The IIIa bust is coarser than that of IIIb, but other aspects are common to both sub-types. The lettering is of intermediate style and there is an enigmatic mark (escallop?) after TAS. Pellet clusters on the reverse are of late type with the pellets close or conjoined as a trefoil. The quatrefoil in the centre of the cross is of a new form with a distinct central pellet.

 

Obv. legend:  RICARD REX ANGL Z FRAN
Rev. legend:  CIVI TAS EBOR ACI

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Type IIIb (c.1390-1399) - Spink 1695; North 1629 (f)

 

Type III coins have a new bust with close hair, a flatter crown and a cross on the breast. The IIIb bust is finer than that of IIIa, but other aspects are common to both sub-types. The lettering is of intermediate style and there is an enigmatic mark (escallop?) after TAS. Pellet clusters on the reverse are of late type with the pellets close or conjoined as a trefoil. The quatrefoil in the centre of the cross is of a new form with a distinct central pellet.

 

Obv. legend:  RICARD REX ANGL Z FRAN
Rev. legend:  CIVI TAS EBOR ACI

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Type IV (c.1390-1399) - Spink 1696; North 1329 (g)

 

Type IV pennies have a distinctive bust with 'puffed out' hair, as found on heavy coinage pennies of Henry IV. They have late style lettering with a Gothic N and a fractured bottom right serif to the letter 'I'. Pellet clusters in the angles of the reverse cross are of late type with the pellets close or conjoined as a trefoil. The quatrefoil in the centre of the reverse cross is of a new form, the centre of which is believed to contain a tiny letter R.

Obv. legend:  RICARD REX ANGLIE F; RICARDVS REX ANGL Z F
Rev. legend:  CIVI TAS EBO RACI

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Type Ia Note

Type Ia coins are not further subdivided (as Purvey 1962) in this article, but the change of obverse legend that occurs on London pennies of his Type Ia4 justifies their distinction from other Type Ia coins, all of which share the same shorter legend. I have accordingly suffixed the Ia label in their case with an asterisk, but it should be understood that this is solely for the convenience of referring to them within the present article.

Type Ia York Note

Only one die of Purvey's Type Ia2 has no cross or fleur-de-lis on the breast. It was most likely omitted in error. His Type 1a3 has a quatrefoil after ACI, and his Type Ia5 has pellets by the king's shoulders, as Type Ib.

Type III London Note

Lord Stewartby lists a Type III London reverse muled with a Henry IV heavy coinage penny. No true Type III London coin of Richard II is known.

Type IV London Note

This type is muled both ways with heavy coinage pennies of Henry IV.