The Yorkshire Numismatist - Volume III
"it is little short of a miracle to have attracted the quality and variety of papers in the time available"
Below are the Introduction to, and Content of, and The Yorkshire Numismatist, volume 3, an occasional but highly regarded journal. Included are over 22 full-length articles extending to 250 pages. Many contributors are internationally recognised numismatic authorities. Many of these articles are important contributions to numismatic literature.
This excellent journal is highly recommend. Order instructions can be found below.
Planning Volume III of The Yorkshire Numismatist has been an involved logistical exercise. Without the advantage of the numerous numismatic contacts of the previous editor, the late Peter Seaby, and with the considerable lapse of time since his signal achievement in compiling volumes I and II, momentum had to be built from a 'cold start'. Given the ambitious timescale, based on the intention of producing volume IV in time for the April 1999 BANS Congress, appropriate material for this third volume had to be procured, produced, financed and distributed to a very tight timetable. Each of these stages presented considerable challenges in view of my absence of experience in such concerns.
Perspective and 'position'
However, perhaps more fundamental were the questions of perspective and 'position', mix and balance. I believe there is a place for a regular journal addressing 'applied numismatics'. A broad gulf seems to have developed as the artificial and excessive price rises of the late '70's have inhibited collecting, whilst increasingly conscientious detecting has greatly expanded our knowledge and justified greater resource allocation into numismatic research.
Existing regular publications serve the quite distinct sides of this gulf and have quite different objectives. Whereas the populist magazines carry useful and informative material and provide an excellent medium for dealers, the more studious hardback annuals cater for academic, original output which become fundamental works of reference.
Without wishing to offend (but no doubt succeeding), both sides seem constrained by self-imposed stylistic protocols. Nevertheless, here is a niche for this journal. I make no apology for any failure to disguise contributors' style with the latest stylistic pedantry or grammatical mode.
I do, however, take responsibility for any typographical errors contained herein.
Mix and balance
Applied numismatics simply puts numismatic evidence to work in other disciplines. Nothing new here. The theme of this volume is numismatic evidence in British archaeology, economic and social history. I requested contributors to view this in a broad context appealing to a wide audience of numismatists, historians and economists. Lack of time and contacts constricts this to some degree, and the wish to accommodate contributions from members, and anchor the content to our regional base, impose voluntary constraints. Having taken a pragmatic view of these limits I am delighted with the quality and variety of the articles here published. I hope you enjoy reading them!
'Heroic' may suffice to describe Philip de Jersey's assumptions in his refreshing break from academic inhibition in attempting to approximate the volume of Celtic finds.
The journal's Anglo-Saxon section is particularly strong and it is most encouraging to find existing members making worthy contributions to national debates. James Booth's 'conspectus' of Northumbrian coinage, 670 to 867, is most illuminating and Mike Bonser's summary of productive sites is an important step towards improved recording. Elizabeth Pirie's note will, no doubt, stimulate response. Veronica Smart's incisive paper responds to an earlier article.
Derek Chick's long-awaited interim study "towards a chronology of Offa's coinage" is probably the major work in this journal. I am flattered he chose to publish here.
Although academic application and originality tend to diminish with recency, Brian Robinson's item on Captain Cook, David Pickup on the Wilberforce election and Frank Mellor's opus on 'Presidential Awards for Lifesaving' all contain elements of original work.
The extent to which seventeenth-century tokens can reveal local history is nicely illustrated by the coincidental inclusion of both tokens subject of Geoffrey Percival's piece, in the extensive finds list submitted by Jim Halliday. Mr Halliday's productivity is indeed remarkable!
It is hoped that the next edition of the Journal will focus on Monetary Studies. Scott Seman's tangential but learned contribution (first printed in his list 59x) is now included to remind us of the enormous width of our favoured subject.
The 'Observations' section is intended for short notes on items of interest (Michael Cuddeford on single detector finds, Richard Plant on Eras), news (Bryan Sitch on Leeds Museums, Joe Cribb on the BM's new HSBC gallery), reviews and opinion (Paul Withers on writing an article). All the better if these latter two categories provoke debate. Tim Owen's observation on relative pricing, whilst light-hearted, nevertheless demands serious attention from cataloguers involved in valuation. Even in a dynamically changing market, better guidance is achievable.
I hope 'The Northern Register' is not too pretentious a section title. I do not imply anything as ambitious as a Sylloge but more an opportunity to publish finds and publicise collections (Yorkshire Museum, Craig Barclay and Leeds University, Christopher Challis). In my parochial view John Rumsby's introductory phrase "Kirklees... Borough includes...several smaller towns such as Cleckheaton, Heckmondwike and Holmfirth." conjures up a wonderfully vivid image whilst keeping our Yorkshire feet resolutely on God's own acre!
There remains much organisational work, regionally and nationally, in making numismatic evidence more accessible, in building bridges between disciplines and between institutions, and in directing and presenting published material in creative, informative and intelligible ways. Your participation will make this a reality.
AIJA 1st May 1997.
Foreword, Michael Metcalf
Introduction & Acknowledgements, Tony Abramson
Cast away riches: estimating the volume of Celtic coinage found in Britain, Philip de Jersey
Northumbrian coinage: the productive site at South Newbald, James Booth
Fifteen years of coin finds from productive sites, Mike Bonser
Towards a chronology for Offa's coinage: an interim study, Derek Chick
Eanred's penny: a Northumbrian enigma, Elizabeth Pirie
A problem of convention: a belated reply, Veronica Smart
Long cross moneyers of York, Ian Dowthwaite
The Yorkshire coiners: `Owt for Nowt', Tony Abramson
Captain James Cook's distribution of Maundy money, Brian Robinson
Edmund Dring and Jerome Madox, Geoffrey Percival
A seventeenth-century token of Durham, Ian Taylor
Yorkshire re-attributions of seventeenth-century tokens, Robert Thompson
The medals produced for the 1807 York Paliamentary election, David Pickup
United States Presidential awards for lifesaving at sea, Frank Mellor
African bracelet money, Scott Semans
Single coin finds: some observations, Michael Cuddeford
Eras in numismatics, Richard Plant
The definite article: advice from a numismatic scribbler, Paul Withers
Hammered coins: relative price and scarcity, Tim Owen
THE NORTHERN REGISTER
Coin finds reported to the Yorkshire Museum 1992-6, Craig Barclay
Recent finds of seventeenth-century Yorkshire tokens, Jim Halliday
Seventeenth-century tokens in the collection of the University of Leeds, Christopher Challis
Yorkshire checks and passes in the Kirklees Museum, John Rumsby
Current events at Leeds Museum: archaeology & numismatics, Bryan Sitch
The new HSBC Money Gallery at the British Museum, Joe Cribb
The British Association of Numismatic Societies: Officers & Members, Philip Mernick
The Yorkshire Numismatic Society 1991-6, Lee Toone.
246p, p/b © YNS, 1997.
Due to a telephonic line glitch while transmitting the final proof for printing, the following text was omitted from page 134:
Traders' accounts are full of references to a certain number of manillas of this type or that buying a specified commodity at a given time – all useless now as we have no way of knowing what sort of manilla was meant. Ships' manifests and other records of the day usually refer simply to brass or copper without specifying its form, or they may enumerate either the number or total weight of "manillas," but never both. We know from the above account that the manillas traded by the Portuguese in the 16th century were heavier than those of the English in the 19th, and that manillas of different weights were made contemporaneously for trade into different ports.
Shown in Benin, Royual Art of Africa, by Armand Duchateau, on p.36 is a massive manilla of 25cm across and 4.5cm gauge, crudely cast with scoop-faceted sides, and well worn. Presently in the Museum für Volkerkunde in Vienna it could be the heaviest (no weight given) and earliest manilla known. The Portuguese manillas for trade into Elmina in 1529 weighed about 0.6 kilo (21.2oz), while the 1548 contracted pieces of 160 or 190/100 arates noted above would have been about 0.28 and 0.25 kilos (10 & 8.5 oz) respectively. I have two examples resembling Johansson's Mkporo manilla which weigh 0.274 and 0.276k. Manillas carried on a 1645 Dutch expedition are said to have weighed 1 1/2 modern Dutch ounces, or about 0.15k (5.3 oz.). This could have been the still common manilla (Johansson's "Popo") which averages nearly 5 oz. Zay (1892) in writing of French Colonial monies, also noted a "Birmingham" manilla of 0.14 - 0.15k used in the Ivory Coast and called "Igbi."
Regarding English manillas, Herbert quotes an earlier author on the secrecy practised in that industry. Deliberate secrecy or simple unconcern, the net effect is that we have little to go on today. If Quiggin's fig.26 #3 & 4 do represent pieces exported from Birmingham in 1836 as implied, they appear to be one of the smaller types depicted in Johansson's chart. On p13-14 he illustrates and names 9 types of crescent manillas, presumably the fruits of his own research, as the names do not correspond to those he notes from other sources.
YN1 ContentsYN1 was edited by John M. Ferret and Peter J. Seaby. 112p, p/b © YNS, 1988.
YN2 was edited by John M. Ferret, Peter J. Seaby and Alan Humphries.
144p, p/b © YNS, 1992.