Feminae: Medieval Women and Gender Index


  • Record Number: 4157
  • Author(s)/Creator(s): Innes- Parker , Catherine.
  • Contributor(s):
  • Title: Coinage Associated with Æthelflaed of Mercia
  • Source: Old English Newsletter 25, 3 (Spring 1992): Appendix A: Abstracts of Papers in Anglo-Saxon Studies. Conference paper presented at the Twenty-Seventh Congress on Medieval Studies, Western Michigan University, May 7-10, 1992, Session 206: "Coinage in the Early Middle Ages: Ireland and the British Isl
  • Description:
  • Article Type: Conference Paper Abstract
  • Subject (See Also): Æthelflaed, Lady of the Mercians Coins Queens Rulers
  • Geographic Area: British Isles
  • Century: 10
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  • Abstract: Sometime around the year 910, Mercian mints began issuing a new and iconographically unusual series of coins. These coins are known traditionally as the "exceptional" or "ornamental" types of Edward the Elder. They feature towers, flowers, or the hand of God on the reverse rather than the traditional cross or portrait bust. It has recently been suggested that the unusual imagery of the coinage may have been Æthelflæd's way of distinguishing coins issued by her mints from those issued by her brother's mints. This suggestion is supported by the fact that when Edward seized power in Mercia at Æthelflæd's death, the Mercian mints reverted to issues of earlier types. This return to traditional types may have been part of Edward's efforts to discourage any form of Mercian separatism. Material evidence associated with Æthclflæd and the period of her control of Mercia is rare, and the above suggestions therefore become particularly intriguing. This paper explores these propositions in greater detail. It looks specifically at the history of Mercia in the years 910-918, to see which, if any, events might be specifically connected to the new coinage. It also examines the broader background of Mercian art and earlier types of coins as possible iconographic sources for the new "exceptional" types. [Reproduced by permission of Robert Schicler, the “Abstracts of Papers in Anglo-Saxon Studies” editor, and the editors of the “Old English Newsletter.”].
  • Author's Affiliation: Memorial University of Newfoundland
  • Conference Info: - , -
  • Year of Publication: 1992.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN/ISBN: 00301973
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