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Coins, monetisation and re-use in medieval England and Wales: new interpretations made possible by the Portable Antiquities Scheme.

KELLEHER, RICHARD,MARK (2013) Coins, monetisation and re-use in medieval England and Wales: new interpretations made possible by the Portable Antiquities Scheme. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.

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Coins are a vital source of evidence for many aspects of the medieval past. In this thesis a large volume of provenanced coin records collected and published online by the Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS) are analysed to look for patterns of monetization and coin use in medieval England and Wales. While the approach used here will make full use of numismatic methods it also seeks to evolve an interdisciplinary perspective to the data. As well as providing the first national study of this kind the research also aims to draw out evidence for alternative, non-monetary uses of coins, including the adaption of coinage for other purposes, for example jewellery. Additionally the impact and various roles played by imported foreign coins will be assessed to provide a new perspective on
England’s links with its near Continental neighbours and beyond.

The results demonstrate a long and complex story of coin use and monetisation over the study period. The spread of coin use was intimately linked to coin production which was itself a geographically contingent phenomenon absorbing metals through trade with the Continent. Coin distributions were also subject to dynamics such as levels of population
and other demographic factors. Foreign coins played an important role at times in English currency, if not always a welcome one. The political contacts of the English crown is borne out in the appearance of many imported coins but direct trading links, for example with Venice, mutually beneficial currency agreements, as arranged with the Burgundians in the
fifteenth century, or coins as the simple souvenirs of pilgrims also played a part. By exploring the re-use of coins this thesis significantly expands current understandings of how medieval people viewed coinage and how they attributed new meanings to them.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Keywords:Archaeology, numismatics, coins, monetisation, secondary use
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Social Sciences and Health > Archaeology, Department of
Thesis Date:2013
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:30 May 2013 10:01

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