Irish Coin Daily: Hiberno-Norse Silver Penny (Phase I, Class D – Small Cross Type) in the name of Sihtric / Moneyer: Leofwine (of Chester)

The Irish Coin Cabinet. The Old Currency Exchange. Irish Coin Dealer. Buying Irish coins. Selling irish coinage. Dubin. Ireland.

Date: c. 1011-1016

Hiberno-Norse Phase 1, Class D (Small Cross type). +SIHTRC RE+ DУFLND MΘ. Chester mint, Moneyer Leofwine +LEΘFPINE ΘN LEIC


Hiberno-Norse Silver Penny, Phase 1, Class D (Small Cross type). Struck for Sihtric (Silkenbeard) Anlafsson. Chester mint, Moneyer: Leofwine

  • Diameter: 18 mm
  • Weight: 0.93 g

References: SCBI 32 (Belfast), 32 var. (legends); O’S -; D&F 19; SCBC 6118

  • Good Very Fine (gVF)
  • Toned, die rust on obverse, with a little porosity.
  • Peck marks on reverse (indicating some circulation)
    • Very rare


  • Diademed and draped bust left
  • Legend: + SIHTRC RE+ DУFLND MΘ
    • Translates as: Sihtric, King of Dublin


  • Small cross pattée
  • Legend: + LEΘFPINE ΘN LEIC
    • Translates as: Leofwine, Moneyer of Chester


  • Ireland


  • Hiberno-Norse
    • Phase I
    • Class D (Small Cross issue)
      • Mint = Chester
      • Moneyer = Leofwine
  • Hammered

Additional Information:

The British numismatist Michael Dolley classified Hiberno-Norse coins into seven distinct “phases”, covering a period of over 150 years.

About the year 995, Sihtric III “Silkbeard”, (also spelled Sitrick, Sigtrygg, Sitriuc and many other variants) King of Dublin, issued silver pennies that closely imitated the contemporary Anglo-Saxon coins of English King Aethelred II.

  • Some of Sihtric’s coins bear his own name, and spell out the name of Dublin (“DYFLIN,”); others simply copy the names of Aethelred and various English mints and moneyers.
  • These were the first coins struck in Ireland
    • The reason for issuing them was probably both
      • practical (to pay mercenaries)
      • symbolic (to enhance the king’s prestige by displaying his wealth and power)

Phase I coinage lasted 20-25 years, and went through several design changes.

  • The most common type imitates Aethelred’s “Long Cross” issue, bearing an obverse image of a bare-headed king draped in a cloak. The “voided cross” reverse could serve as a guide for cutting the coin into halves or quarters, since no smaller denominations were struck.
    • Class A          996-1001         Crux issue (King Aethelred II)
    • Class B        1002-1008          Long Cross issue (King Aethelred II)
    • Class C        1009-1011          Helmet issue (King Aethelred II)
    • Class D        1011-1016          Small Cross issue (King Aethelred II)
    • Class E        1016-1018          Quatrefoil issue (King Cnut)
    • Class F        1024-1030          Pointed Helmet issue (King Cnut) in the name of Sihtric – none known
    • Class ?        1024-1030          Pointed Helmet issue (King Cnut) in the name of Anlaf Sihtricsson – one ‘unique’ piece recently found

Other Coins in this Series:

Further Reading:




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s