List of Anglo-Saxon Coin Finds in Medieval Ireland


Most of the books and academic papers state that Ireland was a coinless society throughout the first millennium A.D. However, this is not strictly true, since small numbers of coins from the Roman world circulated in Ireland in the first half of this millennium. It is not thought that they were used as currency – it is more likely that they were curiosities, gifts or for their bullion value.

Certain exotic goods – especially pottery, glass and coinage – are datable, and these suggest that there were three main phases of trade in Early Medieval Ireland :–

  • Mediterranean trade (c. A.D. 400 – 600)
  • Gaulo-Frankish trade (c. A.D. 600 – 800)
  • Hiberno-Scandinavian 165 trade (c. A.D. 800 – 1150)
    • the Anglo-Saxon coins found in Ireland belong to the last phase
    • the ‘imported’ 10th C Hiberno-Norse coins of Northumbria and York belong here too

Proper coin usage in Ireland begins with the Vikings, culminating in the first minting of Irish coins, by the King of Dublin (Sihtric Silkenbeard) c. 997 AD – the so-called Hiberno-Norse Phase I coinage. Before this, there is evidence of significant usage/hoarding of Anglo-Saxon coins (the most commonly found ‘imported’ coinage).

Aethelred II, Type 2 - First Hand type penny, Moneyer, Cynsige of London

Aethelred II, Type 2 – First Hand type silver penny, Moneyer, Cynsige of London

It is presumed that they reached Ireland through Viking activity. Paradoxically, most Viking-age coin hoards occur in areas that would have been under Irish, rather than Scandinavian, control—notably the powerful midland kingdom of Mide (Meath).

  • Analysis of the occurrence and distribution of these hoards suggests that most were deposited by Irish, rather than Hiberno-Norse, hoarders
  • This has led to leading academics (Gerreits and Kenny) suggesting that that contact with the Hiberno-Norse may have created a “heightened awareness of coins and coin usage,” especially in the kingdoms bordering Dublin—Mide, Brega, and north Leinster.

  • Townland/Site Name
    • Site Type
      • Comments
        • Reference

  • Adare, Co. Limerick
    • ?
      • About twenty-four coins in total – Anglo-Saxon.
        • Hall 1973-74, 80.
  • Cathedral Hill, Armagh, Co. Armagh
    • ?
      • Two Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadgar’
        • Hall 1973-74, 76.
  • Armagh, Co. Armagh
    • Ecclesiastical
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Offa’
        • Hall 1973-74, 82.
  • Armagh, Co. Armagh
    • ?
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Eadgar’
        • Hall 1973-74, 82.
  • Ballitore, Co. Kildare
    • ?
      • Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadmund’; ‘Eadwig’; ‘Eadgar’; ‘Eadred’
        • Hall 1973-74, 76.
  • Ballycastle, Co. Antrim
    • Megalith
      • 70 coins in total – Anglo-Saxon
        • Hall 1973-74, 80.
  • Ballylynan, Co. Laois
    • ?
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Harold I’
        • Hall 1973-74, 80.
  • Ballywillin, Co. Antrim
    • Boat Burial
      • A few Anglo-Saxon coins
        • Hall 1973-74, 82.
  • Bawnaughragh, Co. Laois
    • ?
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Offa’
        • Hall 1973-74, 82.
  • Broad Street, Limerick, Co. Limerick
    • Hiberno-Scandinavian Urban
      • Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Cnut’
        • O’Donovan 1999:0515
  • Bullock, Co. Dublin
    • ?
      • Three Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Eadgar’
        • Hall 1973-74, 77.
  • Bullock, Co. Dublin
    • ?
      • 65 Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Eadgar’
        • Hall 1973-74, 77.
  • Burt, Co. Donegal
    • ?
      • Eleven Anglo-Saxon – ‘Eadgar’
        • Hall 1973-74, 76.
  • Castlebellingham, Co. Louth
    • ?
      • Two Anglo-Saxon coins –‘Edward the Elder’
        • Hall 1973-74, 73.
  • Clonmacnoise, Co. Offaly
    • Ecclesiastical Site
      • Possible Anglo-Saxon coin.
        • King 1994:0197.
  • Collinstown, Co. Westmeath
    • Crannog
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Æthelred II’
        • Kenny 1987, 521.
  • Cushendall, Co. Antrim
    • Grave
      • Two Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Berhtulf’ – Archbishop ‘Ceolnoth’
        • Hall 1973-74, 73; Seaby 1959.
  • Dalkey, Co. Dublin
    • ?
      • 80 Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadmund’; ‘Eadwig’; ‘Eadgar’; ‘Eadred’; ‘Edward the Elder’
        • Hall 1973-74, 77.
  • Delgany, Co. Wicklow
    • ?
      • 115 Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Eadberht Præn’; ‘Cuthred’; ‘Baldred’; ‘Offa’; ‘Coenwulf’; ‘Beornwulf’; ‘Ecgbeorht’ – Archbishops ‘Æthilweard’; ‘Wulfred’
        • Hall 1973-74, 71; Dolley & Morrison 1963, 77.
  • Derrykeighan, Co. Antrim
    • Ecclesiastical
      • 280 coins in total – Anglo-Saxon – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadmund’; ‘Eadwig’; ‘Eadgar’; ‘Eadred’
        • Hall 1973-74, 78.
  • Derrymore, Co. Westmeath
    • ?
      • Eleven coins in total – Anglo-Saxon – ‘Æthelred II’
        • Hall 1973-74, 79.
  • Drogheda, Co. Louth
    • ?
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Æthelstan’
        • Hall 1973-74, 82.
  • DUBLIN:
  • 26-29 Castle Street, Dublin
    • Hiberno-Scandinavian Urban
      • 76 Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Ethelred II’
        • Byrne 1993:0057 26-29
  • Castle Street, Dublin
    • Hiberno-Scandinavian Urban
      • 237 Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Ethelred II’
        • Byrne 1993:0057
  • Christchurch Place, Dublin
    • Hiberno-Scandinavian Urban
      • Two Anglo-Saxon coins
        • Ó Ríordáin 1975:0015.
  • Christchurch Place, Dublin
    • Hiberno-Scandinavian Urban
      • Two Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelred’; ‘Cnut’
        • Ó Ríordáin 1973:0017.
  • Fishamble Street I, Dublin
    • Hiberno-Scandinavian
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – 10th C.
        • Ó Ríordáin 1976:0019
  • Fishamble Street II, Dublin
    • Hiberno-Scandinavian Urban
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Eadgar’
        • Wallace 1977-79:0037
  • High Street, Dublin
    • Hiberno-Scandinavian Urban
      • Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Anlaf’
        • Ó Ríordáin 1972:0014
  • Werburgh Street, Dublin
    • Hiberno-Scandinavian Urban
      • 125 Anglo-Saxon coins – late-10th century.
        • Hayden 1994:0087
  • Dublin, Co. Dublin
    • ?
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Eadgar’
        • Hall 1973-74, 82. Rock of
  • Dunamase, Dunamase, Co. Laois
    • Cashel? Re-built as castle.
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – 9th C.
        • Hodkinson 1995:0176
  • Dunbrody, Co. Wexford
    • ?
      • 1600 coins in total – Anglo-Saxon – ‘Edward the Confessor’; ‘Cnut’; ‘Harold I’; ‘Harthacnut’
        • Hall 1973-74, 80.
  • Durrow, Co. Offaly
    • Ecclesiastical
      • Ten Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Edward the Elder’; ‘Æthelstan’.
        • Hall 1973-74, 74.
  • Dunmore Cave, Mohil, Co. Kilkenny
    • Cave
      • Fourteen Anglo-Saxon silver pennies – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Edward the Elder’
        • Wallace & Ó Floinn 2002, 223.
  • Dunmore Cave, Mohil, Co. Kilkenny
    • Cave
      • Ten coins in total -Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Edward the Elder’
        • Hall 1973-74, 73
  • Dysert, Lough Ennell, Co. Westmeath
    • Crannog
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Alfred’
        • Kenny 1987, 521
  • Fennor, Co. Meath
    • Megalith
      • Two Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadmund’
        • Hall 1973-74, 75.
  • Fontstown, Co. Offaly
    • ?
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Æthelred II’
        • Hall 1973-74, 82.
  • Fourknocks, Co. Meath
    • ?
      • Twenty-nine coins in total – Anglo-Saxon – ‘Æthelred II’
        • Hall 1973-74, 80.
  • Glasnevin, Co. Dublin
    • ?
      • Two Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’
        • Hall 1973-74, 73.
  • Glendalough, Co. Wicklow
    • Ecclesiastical
      • Forty-nine Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Edward the Elder’; ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadmund’
        • Hall 1973-74, 74.
  • Glendalough, Co. Wicklow
    • Ecclesiastical
      • Anglo-Saxon coins -‘Eadmund’; ‘Eadwig’; ‘Eadgar’; ‘Eadred’.
        • Hall 1973-74, 78.
  • Kildare, Co. Kildare
    • ?
      • Thirty-four Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelred II’
        • Hall 1973-74, 79.
  • Kilkenny, Co. Kilkenny
    • ?
      • Large quantities of coins – AngloSaxon – ‘Cnut’
        • Hall 1973-74, 80.
  • Killincoole, Co. Louth
    • ?
      • Seven Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadwig’; ‘Eadgar’; ‘Eadred’
        • Hall 1973-74, 77.
  • Killyon Manor, Co. Meath
    • ?
      • 88 coins in total – Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadmund’; ‘Edward the Elder; ‘Eadred’
        • Hall 1973-74, 75.
  • Knockmaon, Co. Waterford
    • ?
      • Fourteen coins in total – Anglo-Saxon – ‘Eadgar’
        • Hall 1973-74, 79.
  • Knowth, Co. Meath
    • Raised Rath – re-used passage tomb.
      • Two Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadred’.
        • Eogan 1971:0028
        • Hall 1973-74, 74.
  • Lagore, Co. Meath
    • Crannog
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Edward the Elder’
        • Hencken 1950, 181;
        • Hall 1973-74, 82.
  • Leggagh, Co. Meath
    • ?
      • Ten coins in total – Anglo-Saxon – ‘Edward the Elder’
        • Hall 1973-74, 73.
  • Londonderry, Co. Londonderry
    • ?
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Offa’
        • Hall 1973-74, 82.
  • Lough Lene, Co. Westmeath
    • ?
      • Twenty eight coins in total – Anglo-Saxon- ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadmund’; ‘Eadwig’; ‘Eadgar’; ‘Eadred’
        • Hall 1973-74, 76.
  • Macroom, Co. Cork
    • ?
      • Seventeen Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadmund’; ‘Edward the Elder; ‘Eadred’
        • Hall 1973-74, 75.
  • Marl Valley, Co. Westmeath
    • ?
      • 120-150 Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Eadred’; ‘Æthelstan II’
        • Hall 1973-74, 79.
  • Marshes Upper, Co. Louth
    • Unenclosed habitation site
      • Seven Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelred II’ Gosling 1980-84:0137
        • Kenny 1987, 521.
  • Monasterboice, Co. Louth
    • Ecclesiastical
      • Three Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadmund’; ‘Eadred’
        • Hall 1973-74, 75.
  • Mullingar, Co. Westmeath
    • ?
      • Three Anglo-Saxon coins
        • Hall 1973-74, 79.
  • Mungret, Co. Limerick
    • Ecclesiastical
      • Nine coins in total – Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Edward the Elder; ‘Eadred’
        • Hall 1973-74, 75.
  • Newtownlow, Co. Westmeath
    • Crannog
      • Six Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadmund’; ‘Eadred’
        • Bourke 1985:0058
        • Kenny 1984, 37.
  • Oldcastle, Co. Meath
    • Isolated souterrain
      • Twelve coins in total – AngloSaxon – ‘Eadmund’; ‘Eadred’
        • Hall 1973-74, 75-76.
  • Rahan (I), Co. Offaly
    • ?
      • Hoard of Anglo-Saxon coins
        • Hall 1973-74, 77.
  • Rahan (II), Co. Offaly
    • ?
      • Hoard of Anglo-Saxon coins
        • Hall 1973-74, 77.
  • Rathbarry, Co. Cork
    • Souterrain
      • Hoard of Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadmund’
        • Hall 1973-74, 74.
  • Rathcroghan, Co. Roscommon
    • Multivallate rath
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Edward the Elder’
        • Hall 1973-74, 82.
  • Smarmore, Co. Louth
    • ?
      • 72 coins in total – Anglo-Saxon – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadgar’; ‘Eadred’; ‘Edward the Elder’; ‘Eadmund’; ‘Eadwig’
      • Hall 1973-74, 77.
  • Unlocated, Co. Dublin
    • ?
      • Twenty-nine Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Edward the Elder’; ‘Æthelstan’.
        • Hall 1973-74, 73.
  • Unlocated, Co. Kildare
    • ?
      • Ten Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Edward the Elder’; ‘Æthelstan’.
        • Hall 1973-74, 74.
  • Unlocated, Co. Kilkenny
    • ?
      • 60 Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Eadgar’
        • Hall 1973-74, 78.
  • Unlocated, Co. Meath
    • ?
      • Two Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Eadred’; ‘Eadgar’
        • Hall 1973-74, 77.
  • Unlocated, Co. Tipperary
    • ?
      • Nineteen Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Edward the Elder’; ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadmund’
        • Hall 1973-74, 74.
  • Unlocated
    • ?
      • Seven Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Burgred’; ‘Æthelred I’; ‘Alfred’
        • Hall 1973-74, 73.
  • Unlocated
    • ?
      • Hoard of Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’
        • Hall 1973-74, 74.
  • Unlocated
    • ?
      • Forty-eight coins in total – Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Æthelstan’; ‘Eadmund’; ‘Eadwig’; ‘Eadgar’; ‘Eadred’
        • Hall 1973-74, 76.
  • Unlocated
    • ?
      • Five Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Eadgar’; ‘Edward the Martyr’
        • Hall 1973-74, 78.
  • Unlocated
    • ?
      • Thirty Anglo-Saxon coins – ‘Eadgar’; ‘Æthelstan II’
      • Hall 1973-74, 78.
  • Unlocated
    • ?
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Ceolwulf II’
        • Hall 1973-74, 82.
  • Unlocated
    • ?
      • One Anglo-Saxon coin – ‘Harthacnut’
        • Hall 1973-74, 82.
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