Rare Charles I coin minted in Oxford fetches £54,560 at auction

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Tripe Unite coin from the reign of Charles IImage source, PA Media
Image caption,
The Triple Unite was minted in Oxford during the English Civil War and had the value of three pounds

A rare large gold coin from the reign of Charles I has fetched £54,560 at auction.

The coin, known as the Triple Unite, was minted in Oxford in 1643 during the English Civil War and had the value of 60 shillings, or three pounds.

It depicts the King holding a sword and an olive branch, possibly signifying his desire for peace.

It sold earlier at auction house Dix Noonan Webb as part of the Micheal Gietzelt Collection.

It went under the hammer at £44,000, plus a 24% buyers' premium.

'Numismatic masterpiece'

Auctioneer Christopher Webb said the 26.57g coin was "far exceeding the size and value of any previous denomination struck in the British Isles".

He said the Triple Unite "was as much a propaganda piece for the king as it was a means of meeting the enormous expenditure of the war".

He added: "Despite his Catholic origins, the reverse proclaims his defence of the Protestant religion, English law and the liberty of Parliament.

"Furthermore, having been forced to leave the vast resources of London behind, it proved he still had the authority and financial wherewithal to produce a numismatic masterpiece, made by one of the country's finest engravers, at his new war headquarters in Oxford."

What was the English Civil War?

Image source, Culture Club/Getty Images
Image caption,
Charles I was executed by Parliamentarians in 1649
  • The conflict was a series of civil wars which began in 1642 and ended in 1651
  • Although usually called the English Civil War, it was a much wider conflict also involving Scotland, Ireland and Wales
  • Charles I was executed by Parliamentarians in 1649
  • Supporters of Charles II continued the fighting but the war ended in defeat for the Royalists, after which the younger Charles fled the country

The Triple Unite sold as part of a collection featuring coins from the eras of Charles I and Oliver Cromwell.

A Cromwell broad coin, which was worth 20 shillings in 1656, sold for sold for £29,760.

A crude-shaped shilling minted in Carlisle during a siege fetched sold for £18,600.

Image source, Dix Noonan Webb
Image caption,
The crude-shaped shilling was minted in Carlisle during a siege

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