This extremely rare gold coin was unearthed at East Grafton, Wiltshire, in April 2015.

The coin was struck in modern-day France between about AD655 and AD675, during the time of the Merovingian kings. Coins were very unusual during this period in Anglo-Saxon England and usually represent a royal or ecclesiastical gift, sometimes given to people who travelled to France or Rome by a king or pope. This example is in good condition and must have been buried soon after it was struck, possibly to hide it during a battle. Tremissis was the currency of late ancient Rome, and the coins continued to be minted by the descendants of the empire. This tremissis shows the depiction of a king modelling himself on a Roman emperor, complete with a cross to symbolise his Christianity. The clasped hands on the reverse are a sign of peace and unity in his kingdom.

Provenance

Believed to have been found in East Grafton, Wiltshire, April 2015




Exhibitions at Wiltshire Museum

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