A chap in the village is a keen metal detectorist (not sure that's a word) and over the last 10 years or so has unearthed lots of finds around the local area. He often has some interesting coin or artifact in his jacket pocket when he comes into the pub and we get talking about them as I've always been interested in history.
Last night he had this coin with him.
It is a beautifully preserved silver groat from the reign of Edward IV; hence was minted some time between 1461 and 1483. A groat was worth 4d and would have equated roughly to a labourer's wage for a day.
It is especially interesting because of its local relevance. When Edward's father, Richard Duke of York was killed at the battle of Wakefield in 1460 Edward inherited his title and the castle in the hills above our village. It was there that Edward is thought to have spent the days prior to the Battle of Mortimer's Cross five miles away where he defeated Lancastrian forces in early February 1461. The following month after his victory at the devastating Battle of Towton, claimed to be the bloodiest battle ever fought on English soil, Edward became King Edward IV.
The Latin inscription around the edge reads: EDWARD DI GRA REX ANGL Z FRANC - Edward by the Grace of God King of England and France.
Don't you just love a bit of history over a pint of fine ale?