Silver penny of Edward the Confessor
After the death of Harthacnut (1040-1042) the Danish line came to an end with Aethelred II's son, Edward the Confessor, becoming king. Edward's sympathies lay with the home and friends of his youth - Normandy. He spoke their language, introduced their habits and laid the foundations for the great events that were soon to follow. The coinage of Edward the Confessor, however, is a continuation of what went before. The facing bust appears for the first time, as on this example, with the king seated holding a sceptre and orb, a form probably adopted from Byzantine coins. The reverse on this coin gives the name of the moneyer and mint, Aelfwine at Winchester, and depicts a short cross with a bird in each angle. A lead trial piece struck from the same die as this coin exists in the museum's collections.