Vikings in England. Hack silver denomination set. 9th century AD.

Ancient Coins - Vikings in England.  Hack silver denomination set.  9th century AD.
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In the early medieval Viking period, when coins were not yet widely circulating, silver bars, pieces of Jewellery, and fragments of other silver objects were hacked into fragments for use as money.  The group offer here were selected from a larger group, reported to have been found near Linconshire in England and dated to the 9th century.   I weighed each of the pieces in the hoard and found that all of them conformed to fairly consistent weight standards (discussed below) leading me to I believe denomination set based on fractions of a 26 gram ounce were intended, at least for this particular hoard.  I selected one of each denomination, which is the group offered here.

As they fragments were simply hacked off of larger pieces, they vary slightly from the offical weight standard, and probably had to be weighed at each transaction, but having them cut to approximate denominations in advance would have facilitated easier transactions. 

The group offered here are as follows :

Curved fragment at top : 26.42 grams (1 ounce) ,  50.9 mm long

Straight bar 2nd from top : 11.55 grams (1/2 ounce), 31.9 mm long

Third row left (square bar) : 8.47 grams (1/3 ounce), 11.3 x 12.2 x 9.5 mm

Third row second from left (probably a torque end) : 6.35 grams (1/4 ounce),  15.4 mm long

Third row second from right (triangular bar) : 3.75 grams (1/6 ounce),  11.1 mm long

Third row right (think square bar) : 1.70 grams (1/12 ounce), 9.6 x 8.4 x 3.0 mm


A possibly way one would arrive at such a set, and easily manufacture bars close to the desired offical weights,  would be by the following process :

1 Start by making 1 ounce bars of about 26 grams.  

2) Cut some of the bars in halfs to make the 1/2 ounce bars of 13 grams.

3) Cut some of the 1/2 ounce bars in halfs to make 1/4 ounce bars of 6.5 grams.

4) Cut some of the 1 ounce bars in thirds to make the 1/3 ounce bars of 8.66 grams.

5) Cut some of the 1/3 ounce bars in half to make 1/6 ounce bars of 4.32 grams.

6) Cut some of the 1/6 ounce bars in half to make 1/12 ounce bars of 2.16 grams.

As the cuts would be done by sight estimates alone, each bar would vary somewhat from the offical standard (getting them exact would be next to impossible), but an approximate denomination set is arrived at very easily.

It might not be a coincidence that the 1/2 ounce size is just around the correct weight to be 2 British pence of that period, so it is possible these were intended for use as a denomination set of 1/12 OUNCE = 2, 1/6 OUNCE = 4, 1/8 OUNCE = 6, 1/3 OUNCE = 8, 1/2 OUNCE = 12 and 1 OUNCE = 24 pence. If so, they server a purpose alongside the 1 pence coins common to that era.

A hoard of very similar viking hack silver was found on the groups of Stornoway Castle, and can be see on this site :


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利率: 03/22/19

发货从: Canada