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British Museum

Emperor Oli

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I spent the last week in London, and whilst on my travels visited the British Museum. Armed with my camera, I took a few photographs of exhibits I thought were quite interesting. They are posted below for your viewing pleasure...


Some dies:





Some dies with the finished product:




A Gothic piece with its collar:




A whole set of dies:




A plaster cast of a full size pound before being reduced:



...on a reducing machine:



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Dialup or not, the collection the BM have are indeed fascinating.


I was drooling over the Henry III twenty pence they had, not to mention the Edward III florins.


I did note the Gothics though! And the dies, the top die you show appears to be a master 'die', i presume, it looks to be in relief and thus presumably was used for striking the dies themselves.

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Oh and slightly off topic but worth a note none the less, i presume you've been to see the small display they've got on at Manchester Museum?


There was some very interesting coins there, now forgive me if i'm predictable but when i go to museums i go to see the big gold coins, so i was stunned to see a pile of about 40 gold nobles laid out in a display case! That my friend was a sight, there's at the very least £40,000 worth of coins sat there! Jeeze, i could be collecting my whole life and i'd never be able to afford 40 nobles.


I was also suitably impressed though to see some perfect strike king Stephen pennies, i mean we're talking well centred, sharp details, easy to read legends for attributing purposes and not a blank patch in sight anywhere. Phenomenol how a few were made so perfect and the rest that collector's get look so shoddy.

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Somehow, I think still after looking at them repeatedly that someone mismatched the coin and die for the 1754 halfpenny. The serif on the 5 on the coin is higher than it is on the die. So I think this is a clear case of a different die having been used for the coin example. Maybe I am too nitpicky and should accept it as such, but can't.

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Terrific pics! On the dies and punches pic...I see hubs and dies, so a 'punch' is what I have been calling a 'hub' i.e., what is used to make a die?

That was my understanding. The exhibit with the dies and punches was scant on making a distinction between the two.

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