Harold I Harefoot AD 1035-1040 Silver Penny Jewel Cross type, Chester Rare


Code: GS139

Harold I AD 1035-1040 Silver Penny, Jewel Cross Type, minted at Chester by the moneyer Leofwig. Rare.

Diademed bust left/ Jewel Cross

S1163, 16mm, 1.07g.

A nice example with old cabinet tone. Small metal flaw in field by nose. One of only 5 coins of Harold I struck at Chester which have been auctioned in the past 20 years suggesting that this is a lower output mint and coins scarce as such.

ex Spink auctions, July 2015 where it sold for £2,600 including fees.

Harold I ‘Harefoot’ – 1035-1040: The eldest son of Cnut, Harold’s strange nickname derives from his alleged fleetness of foot in hunting. Despite being some years older than his half-brother Harthacnut, Harold was not fêted to be Cnut’s immediate successor, as his mother Ælfgifu was of lesser status. Despite this, Harold took control of England following Cnut’s death – pressuring the nobility to support his claim and taking advantage of the fact that Harthacnut was busy suppressing several rebellions in Scandinavia. Though initially conceding to the division of England between Harthacnut and himself, Harold would go back on his word and declare himself sole ruler after only two years of power-sharing. In 1036 he easily quashed an attempt by the exiled sons of Æthelred II to raise rebellion – brutally executing one in the process. He died suddenly in 1040, an unexpected occurrence given his relatively young age.

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