House of Tudor

Henry VIII coins
Henry VIII (1509 - 1547 AD)
Henry VIII is one of the best known English monarchs with a far-reaching effect on the later history of the country. Henry was the younger of Henry VII’s sons, and succeeded his father peacefully after his elder brother Arthur’s premature death at the age of fifteen. Henry had previously been provided with an intensive education and may have been intended for a career in the church.

As negotiations were already underway for Prince Arthur to marry the Spanish noblewoman, Catherine of Aragon, their father substituted Henry for his late brother in the proceedings and appropriate papal dispensations were secured due to the lady’s formal marriage to the deceased Arthur. Henry did his best to repudiate his spouse but was unsuccessful. On his rise to the throne, he soon had two of his father’s advisers executed for treason – a tactic he would use time and again when his ambitions were thwarted.

Henry was both athletic and scholarly, enjoying sports such as jousting and real tennis as well as pursuing the arts and music, and gambling avidly but also retaining a strong spiritual inclination. England was embroiled in lengthy wars with France at this time, allied with Spain against the French who sponsored the Scots to attack England; the battle of Flodden Field in 1513 was a comprehensive defeat for the Scots which ended their involvement in the French wars.

Catherine of Aragon proved unable to supply Henry with an heir, although he had several illegitimate children. Henry diverted his attention to a lady of the court, Anne Boleyn, who used Henry’s infatuation to bolster her position. Papal permission for an annulment was sought but could not be granted (the Pope had been imprisoned by the French king) and Henry began to lose patience with the see of Rome. At this time, the Protestant cause was gaining ground in northern Europe and the king saw an opportunity to divorce himself from his barren wife and divest himself of the need to seek papal authority for his dynastic manoeuvres by having the position of the king declared paramount over both church and state. In 1533 Catherine was stripped of her royal position and Anne Boleyn confirmed as the only true queen after her secret marriage to Henry.

The break with Rome caused a large shift in the political balance of power, with clergy appointed by the Pope no longer able to control English religious and political life. Henry soon tired of Anne and began looking for another consort, while the Dissolution of the Monasteries brought ecclesiastical wealth into the royal coffers. The devastation of the abbeys resulted in the destruction of the greater part of England’s historical literature. Churchmen who refused to take the oath of support for the king were tortured and executed, and Henry took full advantage of his unique position as the head of the church and the state. His hapless marital dealings led to a very complex web of loyalties at the royal court, while his religious role sparked ambition and envy.

Towards the end of his life, Henry lost his athletic abilities due to a leg wound and grew obese. He died in bed in London in 1547. All three of his legitimate children (Edward VI, Mary and Elizabeth) reigned after his death.

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Henry VIII 'Southwark' Posthumous Facing Bust Groat 027371

Henry VIII 'Southwark' Posthumous Facing Bust Groat
Silver, 2.25 grams, 25.83 mm. 1547-1551 AD. 5th bust. Obverse: facing bust with HENRIC DI GRA AGL FRA ET HIB REX legend and no mintmark. Reverse: long cross with roses in forks over arms with CIVITAS LONDON legend and 'E' mintmark for Southwark mint. S. 2404; N. 1872. Fine for issue, mintmark clear.
£90.00

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Henry VIII 'Southwark' Posthumous Facing Bust Groat 027371
Henry VIII 'Arrow 1532-42' Tower Mint Long Cross Halfpenny 026550

Henry VIII 'Arrow 1532-42' Tower Mint Long Cross Halfpenny
Silver, 0.31 grams, 10.34 mm. 1532-1542 AD, second coinage. Obverse: facing bust with H D G ROSA SINE SPIA legend and 'arrow' mintmark. Reverse: long cross and pellets dividing CIVI TAS LON DON legend fro London mint. S. 2356; N. 1815. Very fine.
£95.00

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Henry VIII 'Arrow 1532-42' Tower Mint Long Cross Halfpenny 026550
Henry VIII 'Archbishop Edward Lee' York Long Cross Halfpenny 023956

Henry VIII 'Archbishop Edward Lee' York Long Cross Halfpenny
Silver, 0.27 grams, 10.18 mm. 1526-1544 AD, second coinage, Archbishop Edward Lee issue. Obverse: facing bust with initials E L at sides and H D G ROSA SINE SPIA legend with 'key' mintmark. Reverse: long cross and pellets dividing CIVI TAS EBO RACI legend for York mint. S. 2361; N. 1814. Near very fine, old flan chip.
£80.00

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Henry VIII 'Archbishop Edward Lee' York Long Cross Halfpenny 023956
Henry VIII 'York Mint' Facing Bust Groat 025112

Scarce Henry VIII 'York Mint' Facing Bust Groat
Silver, 2.23 grams, 26.25 mm. 1544-1547 AD, third coinage, bust 2. Obverse: facing bust with no mintmark. Reverse: long cross over arms and CIVI TAS EBO RACI legend for York mint. S. 2374; N. 1848. Good fine for issue.
£240.00

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Henry VIII 'York Mint' Facing Bust Groat 025112
Henry VIII 'Lis 1509-26' Tower Mint Groat 027313

Choice Henry VIII 'Lis 1509-26' Tower Mint Groat
Silver, 2.73 grams, 24.88 mm. Circa 1509-1526 AD. Laker bust D. Obverse: profile bust of Henry VIII and HENRIC VIII D G R AGL Z FRANC legend with 'lis' mintmark. Reverse: long cross over arms with POSVI DEV ADIVTORE MEV legend. S. 2337E; N. 1797. Good very fine, nice old cabinate tone.

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Henry VIII 'Lis 1509-26' Tower Mint Groat 027313
Henry VIII 'Voided Cross 1514-26' Archbishop Wolsey Halfgroat 026744

Henry VIII 'Voided Cross 1514-26' Archbishop Wolsey Halfgroat
Silver, 1.26 grams, 20.64 mm. York Mint, 1514-1526 AD. Obverse: profile bust facing left with 'voided cross' mintmark. Reverse: long cross over shield of arms, T to left and W to right of shield, with same mintmark and cardinal's cap beneath. S. 2348. Fine-good fine.

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Henry VIII 'Voided Cross 1514-26' Archbishop Wolsey Halfgroat 026744
Henry VIII 'Key 1531-44' Archbishop Lee Halfgroat 026765

Henry VIII 'Key 1531-44' Archbishop Lee Halfgroat
Silver, 1.26 grams, 17.69 mm. York Mint, 1531-1544 AD. Obverse: profile bust facing left with 'key' mintmark. Reverse: long cross over shield of arms, L to left and E to right of shield, with same mintmark. S. 2348. Near very fine.
£140.00

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Henry VIII 'Key 1531-44' Archbishop Lee Halfgroat 026765
Henry VIII ‘York Mint’ Halfpenny 027058

Rare Henry VIII 'York Mint' Halfpenny
Silver, 0.36 grams, 12.99 mm. 1509-1526 AD. Obverse: facing bust with HENRIC DI GRA REX A legend. Reverse: long cross and pellets with CIVITAS EBORACI legend for York mint. S. 2335A; N. 1819. Fine.
£90.00

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Henry VIII ‘York Mint’ Halfpenny 027058
Henry VIII 'Lis 1526-44' Tower Mint Profile Groat 026768

Henry VIII 'Lis 1526-44' Tower Mint Profile Groat
Silver, 2.61 grams, 25.09 mm. 1526-1544 AD, second coinage, Laker bust D. Obverse: profile bust with HENRIC VIII D G REX AGLIE Z FRANCE legend and 'lis' mintmark. Reverse: long cross over arms with POISVI DEV ADIVTORE MEV legend with same mintmark. S. 2337E; N. 1797. Good fine and better.
£225.00

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Henry VIII 'Lis 1526-44' Tower Mint Profile Groat 026768
Henry VIII ‘Lis’ Tower Mint Posthumous Groat 027066

Henry VIII 'Lis' Tower Mint Posthumous Groat
Silver, 2.52 grams, 24.72 mm. 1547-1551, AD, bust 4. Obverse: three-quarter facing bust with HENRIC 8 D G AGL FRA Z HIB REX legend and 'lis' mintmark. Reverse: long cross over arms with POSVI DEVS ADIVTORE MEV legend. S. 2403; N. 1871. Near very fine/good fine for issue, with a nice portrait.
£375.00

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Henry VIII ‘Lis’ Tower Mint Posthumous Groat 027066
Henry VIII ‘Canterbury’ Posthumous Halfgroat 027055

Henry VIII 'Canterbury' Posthumous Halfgroat
Silver, 0.99 grams, 19.29 mm. 1547-1551, AD, bust 4. Obverse: three-quarter bust with HENRIC 8 D G REX [ ] legend. Reverse: long cross over arms with CIVITAS CANTOR legend for Canterbury mint. S. 2415; N. 1881. Good fine for issue.

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Henry VIII ‘Canterbury’ Posthumous Halfgroat 027055
Henry VIII 'Key' Archbishop Lee Sovereign Type Penny 020613

Scarce Henry VIII 'Key' Archbishop Lee Sovereign Type Penny
Silver, 0.74 grams, 15.93 mm. Second Coinage; 1531-1544. Obverse: seated king with H D G ROSA SIE SPIA legend, with 'key' mintmark. Reverse: long cross over shield of arms dividing initials L E for Archbishop Lee and CIVITAS EBOR ACI legend for York mint. S. 2352; N. 1811. Fine.
£195.00

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Henry VIII 'Key' Archbishop Lee Sovereign Type Penny 020613
Henry VIII 'Lis, Annulets in Forks' Tower Mint Groat 021463

Interesting Henry VIII 'Lis, Annulets in Forks' Tower Mint Groat
Silver, 2.25 grams, 25.25 mm. Third coinage, 1544-1547 AD. Obverse: facing bust with HENRIC 8 D G AGL FRA hIB REX with 'lis' mintmark. Reverse: long cross with large annulets in forks over arms dividing POSVI DEV ADIVTORE MEV legend with 'Lis' mintmark. S. 2369. Very fine in good silver, probably defaced with 'hate' scratches by a Catholic.
£275.00

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Henry VIII 'Lis, Annulets in Forks' Tower Mint Groat 021463
Henry VIII 'London' Halfgroat 020608

Henry VIII 'London' Halfgroat
Silver, 1.05 grams, 19.43 mm. Posthumous issue, 1547-1551. Obverse: three quarter facing bust left with 'pellet in annulet [56?]' mintmark. Reverse: long cross over arms dividing CIVITAS LONDON legend and same mintmark. S. 2410. Near fine, uncleaned 'as found' condition.
£75.00

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Henry VIII 'London' Halfgroat 020608


Hammered Coin Book and Other References:

S = Coins of England and the United Kingdom
N = English Hammered Coinage by J J North
SI = Sterling Imitations of Edwardian Type by M J Mayhew
WW = Wildwinds.com (reference & attribution site)



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