Norman. William I 'the Conqueror'. Godwig, moneyer. 1066-1087. London mint. Struck c. 1074-1077

Norman. William I 'the Conqueror'. Godwig, moneyer. 1066-1087. London mint. Struck c. 1074-1077

2,500.00

AR Penny, 1.31g (19mm, 6h). Two Stars type (BMC v). + PILELM REX II, crowned facing bust; stars flanking / + GODPI ON LVND, cross botonnée with central annulet over quadrilateral with curved sides.

Pedigree: Ex G. W. Trow Collection (Triton 20, 9 January 2017), lot 1550, purchased from M. Rasmussen, 14 April 2009; Millennia Collection (Goldberg 46B, 26 May 2008), lot 263; Dr. Jacob Y. Terner Collection; Triton VI (14 January 2003), lot 1482.

References: SCBI 53 (Scottish), 97 (same rev. die); BMC 349 (same dies); North 845; SCBC 1254

Grade: EF, toned, with golden hues (wc1046)

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William I changed the course of English history when he and his troops conquered England in 1066 after the death of his relative, the childless Edward the Confessor. Edward’s death sparked dynastic crisis and the eventual Norman Conquest of England. William overtook England which expediency and military prowess when he crossed over from the European mainland to England. He didn’t kill off the political competition as some of his predecessors did, but rather engaged in a series of debt collection that forced many to lose their property. William is also responsible for the Norman practice of building castles of which he did all over England. Most notably, he built the Tower of London. In his old age William grew quite large and when he finally died in 1087 he barely fit in his casket. The problem was exacerbated by the undertakers at the church attempting to push his large frame completely in by pushing on his chest. The horrifying result was that his body literally exploded. The repugnant smell emanating from the casket during his service was certainly a sad remembrance of such a historic man.