Silver farthing of Edward I
Plantagenet, struck around 1280
Found during archaeological excavations in the Brooks area of Winchester in 1967
In 1279 Edward I decided to introduce a totally new coinage both in style and denomination. As well as pennies, struck farthings and halfpennies were issued, which did away with the inconvenience of having to cut pennies into halves and quarters. These lower denominations facilitated trade. The number of mints was reduced to just twelve nationwide, Winchester mint disappearing after nearly 400 years of activity. This farthing was minted in London - the reverse inscription reading LONDONIENSIS. The moneyer's name also disappears from coins at this time, quality control being maintained by the means of the privy mark, a small detail that linked the coin to a particular die and moneyer.