British Numismatic Society

Promoting the study of coins, medals, tokens and banknotes

Until next month, because of government restrictions enforced due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Society is meeting online via Zoom.


Minutes of the September meeting

Minutes of the Meeting of the British Numismatic Society, held online via Zoom on Tuesday, 28 September 2021, Dr Clancy, President, being in the chair and 24 other people present.

NOMINATIONS: Hunter McAuley (Argyll & Bute), Lyle Curtis Molina (London), Anthony Gerard Rea (Cheshire) and Nicholas John Welch (Berkshire) were nominated for Ordinary Membership. Simon Elie Emmanuel Bertaud (France) was nominated for Student Membership.

ELECTIONS: Dr David Ian Calvert (London), Elizabeth McKeown (Belfast) and Ricky Thomas Parrish (London) were elected to Ordinary Membership. Arrun Thuraisingham (Norfolk) was elected to Student Membership.

RE-ELECTION: Charles Kyriacou (West Midlands), a member from 2016-17, was re-elected to Ordinary Membership.

RESIGNATIONS: Fiona Byrne (Co Down, 2018), Roland Leonard Norman Hewson (Hertfordshire, 2004) and Cynwyd Morgan (Glamorgan, 2020) had tendered their resignations.

DEATHS: Dr Christopher Edgar Challis (North Yorkshire, 1972), President of the Society from 1989 to 1993, died on 7 September at the age of 82, Mr G. Dunlop (Lancashire, 1990), died on 13 April 2021 and Christopher Downing Leather (Merseyside, 2000), died on 17 May 2021 aged 70.

The President paid a brief personal tribute to Dr Challis.

Ken Eckardt then read a paper entitled Tortola cut and countermarked coins: a century of marketplace money.

The President then announced the date of the next meeting and closed the meeting.


Our next meeting

Although we will be returning to live in-person meetings from November, for the present we remain online via Zoom. Our next meeting, on Tuesday 26 October, will be addressed by Carl Savage, who will speak to the broad topic Coinage, landscape and society in the borderlands: economy, politics and identity in Scotland and northern England, 1136-1603.

Capacity is limited, so members are asked to register in advance. To join the meeting, please use the registration link sent out in the members email. Those who register will be sent log-in details via email. If you are using the desktop version of Zoom, please ensure that you are using the most up-to-date version before joining the webinar. The meeting itself will commence with formal business at 6pm London BST and Mr Savage's lecture will begin immediately after that.

Coinage in the borderlands in the later Middle Ages was likely sparse, and the usage of it in everyday transactions must have been complicated and to a considerable extent must have been dependent on whose head was on the coin in a person's hand. The subject is a fascinating one and our understanding of it considerably helped by modern methodologies. If you are a devotee of Scottish coins this lecture promises to be of particular interest.

Further Info: 

In 1136 David I seized the city of Carlisle and control of the mint and surrounding silver mines, and began to mint the first native Scottish coins. This had a profound effect on the economies and society in the borderlands, and began a long and complicated monetary relationship between Scotland and England that lasted until the Union of the Crowns in 1603 and beyond. This paper will investigate single coin and hoard finds dating from 1136-1603 found in the Anglo-Scottish borders, and will utilize a range of methodologies such as GIS and statistical testing in order to explore the inter- and intra-regional dimensions of coin loss in relation to political and monetary changes in both countries, the changing role and character of the Anglo-Scottish border and border societies over time, and the role of market and ecclesiastical centres in facilitating cross-border and regional exchange.

Carl Savage is currently undertaking his PhD at the University of York and National Museums Scotland (NMS). He specialises in medieval and post-medieval coins and his main research interests are in the Scottish coinage and numismatics in Scotland, and how archaeological methodologies can be utilised in conjunction with single finds and hoards in Scotland. He also has an interest in the circulation of Scottish coins in England and the role and influence of borders in coin loss and interaction. He is currently working on a die study of David II’s REX SCOTTORVM pence and a new survey of numismatic finds recorded in Scotland from 2011. He has previously worked as a commercial field archaeologist and numismatic specialist.


Meetings continue online for now, but the next in-person event is set for November: and we're back in New York!

Because our regular meeting venue, London's Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, has imposed a strict audience limit for all third-party functions, the Society continues to meet online this month. However, Swedenborg Hall, our traditional (and larger) venue for the Society's May and November meetings, is hosting third-party functions for up to 100 people, so the Society's Anniversary Meeting, followed by the traditional reception, will go ahead there on 23 November. More news on this next month.

Following the easing of transatlantic travel restrictions, we are also pleased to announce the return of our popular annual gathering in New York, on the Saturday afternoon of the city's New York International Numismatic Convention. This year the convention moves to the InterContinental New York Barclay, on Lexington Avenue at East 48th Street in midtown Manhattan, close to its former home at the Waldorf-Astoria. Our speaker will be John Kraljevich, a name needing no introduction to those familiar with American numismatics, and the date is January 15th – we hope to see many friends there.

The Society's postponed Summer Meeting, in the form of a conference entitled Currency Systems: Reforms, Renewals and Failures, will take place as a hybrid event on Saturday 2 July 2022 in the Headley Lecture Theatre at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford.

Library restrictions eased, but prior appointments are essential

With the re-opening of the Warburg Institute during normal business hours, the Society's joint Library's opening hours will return to the pre-pandemic norm of Tuesdays, from 12 noon until 5pm. Access restrictions to the Institute remain in place and are strictly enforced. Only visitors with pre-approved appointments may enter the building to visit the numismatic library; those without appointments will be refused admission.

To request an appointment, contact the Librarian at 
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. at least a week in advance, and then wait until that visit is confirmed before making any travel arrangements.

Warburg Covid-19 procedures allow for only two people to be in the Library at any one time and, for the future, the Librarian will offer time slots so that several visitors can hopefully he accommodated on each day the Library is open.

During the pandemic the Librarian has been actively acquiring several hundred new and second-hand books, while a range of duplicates has been sold off to clear shelf space.

Memories of times past at Baldwin's sought

To mark the 150th anniversary of the then young Albert Baldwin Sr's commencement of dealing in coins at the tender age of 14 in 1872, the present-day Baldwin firm will next year be publishing a book on the company's history.

Just about everyone of a certain age in the numismatic community has an anecdote about the old Baldwin's, and the intention is to include a section about fond memories of the company in the past.

If you have any fond memories of Baldwin's that you would like to share in 100 to 150 words, please contact our member Dominic Chorney, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Money & Medals Network news

As many of you will already know, the British Museum-run collections mapping project and national training programme came to an end on the 30 September.
However, the Money & Medals Network (MMN) is still running and its website and newsletter will continue. The This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. email address is still active, and it will still be possible for enquiries to be sent to this, for the attention of Gareth Williams, Curator of Early Medieval Coins at the British Museum, and Chair of the MMN Steering Group.
It is hoped that the practical work of MMN may continue at some point in the future with another host institution, but for now its activity has been paused. In the meantime, Sam Moorhead (National Finds Officer for the Portable Antiquities Scheme) has indicated that he will be happy to include colleagues from the MMN in the training sessions on Roman and Iron-Age coins for the PAS. For further information, please contact Sam directly at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Dates for your diary

October 26.  Society meeting (Online)

November 17. Holloway Collection.

November 23.  Society Anniversary meeting (London)

December 1 to 4.  FIDEM Congress (Tokyo).


January 15.  Society meeting (New York)

January 25.  Society meeting (London)

March 16.  Devlin Archive.  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

April 8 to 10.  British Association of Numismatic Societies Congress (Portsmouth).  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

May 7.  Historical Medal Congress (Warwick).

September 11 to 16.  International Numismatic Congress (Warsaw).  i">

September 30 to October 2.  40th Annual Token Congress (Northampton).  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.