Canterbury

Archbishops of Canterbury

765-914 AD


Monetary System

The monetary system employed by the Archbishops of Canterbury was that of the silver penny. This relatively new denominations was first introduced to Europe as the silver “denier” in France by Pepin in 755 AD (house of Charlemagne). We find that this new restoration of the old Roman denarius quickly spread throughout Europe and England was no exception. The English translation for “denier” was “penny” and this new silver coin was most likely first issued by Offa, King of Mercia. Nevertheless, the silver penny also appeared in Kent at quite an early date perhaps around 765 AD as well as at Canterbury around the same time period. This new denomination would become the cornerstone of the English monetary system for the next 500 years and remain as the base unit of account even into modern times. The silver half-pence appears around 871 AD in southern England but not half-pence denominations are known from Canterbury during this period. It should also be noted that until 825 AD, Canterbury was an important mint for the Kings of Mercia. Some issues for the Kings of Kent were also struck at Canterbury.

Archbishops of Canterbury

Jaenberht (765-792)

AR Penny

Aethelheard (792-805)

AE Penny

Wulfred (805-832)

AR Penny

Ceolnoth (833-870)

AR Penny

Aethered (870-889)

AR Penny

Plegmund (890-914)

AR Penny


The Monetary History of the World
© Martin A. Armstrong