D'Ewes, Simonds - London, British Library - Harley MS 255, f.25r

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Simonds D’Ewes

D'Ewes, Simonds - London, British Library - Harley MS 255, f.25r
FINA IDUnique ID of the page  15021
TitleTitel of the book. Simonds D'Ewes - Notes concerning Barkham's Catalogue
InstitutionName of Institution. London, British Library
InventoryInventory number. Harley MS 255, f.25r
AuthorAuthor of the document. Simonds D’Ewes
Publication dateDate when the publication was issued: day - month - year .
PlacePlace of publication of the book, composition of the document or institution.
Associated personsNames of Persons who are mentioned in the annotation. William Laud, John Barkham
KeywordNumismatic Keywords  English , Oxford , Errors , Book Corrections
LiteratureReference to literature. Burnett 2020b, pp. 1463-4, 416, 418, 5321
LanguageLanguage of the correspondence Latin
External LinkLink to external information, e.g. Wikpedia 
Grand documentOriginal passage from the "Grand document".

'In Tractatu de Numis Anglicis non a Gulielmo Laudo Archiepiscopo Cantuariense uti ipse in literis suis \[quae?] ad Academiam Oxoniensiem misit/ affirmat.

De numis Oxonij in Bibliotheca publica opere et industria Johannes Barkhami STP \seriatim digesta/ vix satis mirari possum, quinam tam crasse alias erraverit, alias plurima alienis omnia cacis et torulis \ composito/ procul ordine repugnavit.

Sub Byzantio verbo Numos collocat Constantini Magni, Leonis Theophili.

\et Romani Impp./ Traiani et aliorum \Impp/ ordinarios, qui nullo modo res aut ipsum Britanniae nomen spectant inter Britannorum collocat Numos.

Plurima barbara \et ignota inter \et ut/ Britannica reposuit/ in quibus ne ullum omnino elementaru’ reperitur vestigiu’. Inter civitates Britannicas Numos \aeneos/ Constantini Magni, Licinij patris et aliorum in quibus PLON vel PLN in aversis partibus caelantur recenset cusos Romae fortassis vel non uti &c. et argenteos Eboraci cusos sub Anglo-Saxonibus vel circa tempora Gulielmi primi.

Alterius Edwardi Numisma pro Confessoris obtrudit. Regis Gulielmi I. Numum ad Gulielmu’ refert et duo sceptra pro cruce et sceptro memorat

Triangularem in Regis Iohannis moneta figuram ad tria regna denotanda refert, cum Angliam dumtaxat Regis tenebat titulu’, etsi Hiberniam (cuius Dominus dumtaxat audiebat) alteru’ dicamus regnum.

Numum H.7 cathedra insidentis et pedibus portae pensili \cancellatae/ innixi, ad H. 5 perperam refert cum id genus portae sive insigne sive symbolum a filijs nothis Johannis Gandavensis Lancastriae Ducis et eorum posteris (inter quos Rex H.7. primurinum tenebat locum) usurpatum fuerat.

Nummum Regis E.4 cum rosa in solis medio radios effundantis collocata, quod Familiae Eboracensis erat symbolum quo uti et rosa singulari illius denarij et drachmae in illis tempore E.3 proavi sui cusis distinguerentur, perperam oscitanterque ad Regem E.1 refert.

Sub Regina Maria, numos Philippi Hispaniarum Regis priusquam tandem uxorem duxerat, Hispanias et Lusitaniam spectantes, uti sub Rege Iacobo eiusdem numinis primo Numu’ Mariae matris eiusdem Reginae Scotiae perperam collocat.' (BL, Harley MS 255, f.25r; transcription from Burnett 2020b, pp. 1463-4)

[In the Treatise concerning English Coins, not by William Laud the Archbishop of Canterbury as he himself states in the letter which he sent to Oxford University:

Regarding the [treatise of the] coins in the public Library at Oxford which was organised in series through the work and effort of John Barkham I can hardly be sufficiently astonished that he sometimes made such stupid errors, and that sometimes he had so many discrepancies, all with strange mistakes and details, and incompatible with a proper order. Under the heading ‘Byzantium’ he places coins of Constantine the Great, Leo and Theophilus. And Roman emperors. He places ordinary coins of Trajan and other emperors, which in no way refer to the affairs or name of Britain, among those of the Britons.

He placed many barbarous and uncertain coins among the (and as if they were) British, on which not even a single trace of the elements could be found at all. Among British cities he catalogues bronze coins of Constantine the Great, Licinius I and others on which PLON or PLN were engraved on the reverse as perhaps having been struck in Rome, or not as etc. And the silver coins struck at York under the Anglo- Saxons or in about the time of William I.

He puts a coin of the other Edward in place of the Confessor.

He refers a coin of King William I to William [II?] and mentions two sceptres for a cross and sceptre. The triangular shape on the coinage of King John he records as indicating the three kingdoms, although held only England with the title of King, although I would say that Ireland (of which he was styled only Lord) was his other kingdom. A coin of Henry V sitting on a throne and leaning with his feet on a hanging latticed gate he wrongly refers to Henry V, since that type of gate had been usurped either as badge or the symbol by the illegitimate sons of John of Gaunt the Duke of Lancaster and their descendants (among whom King Henry VII held the principal position).

He attributes wrongly and carelessly to King Edward I a coin of King Edward IV, with a rose placed in the middle of a sun emitting rays, which was the symbol of the family of York and from which the pennies and shillings struck with his own rose in the time of Edward III his great-grandfather can be distinguished.

Under Queen Mary he places coins of Philip the King of the Spains before he had yet married her and which refer to the Spains and Portugal; just as under King James I of the same power he wrongly attributes the coin of Mary the mother of the same to the Queen of Scotland.] (translation from Burnett 2020b, p. 1464)

RemarksRemarks regarding the annotation. (en)

Burnett 2020b, p. 1643 n. 6: 'The passage is very hard to read, and I am not sure I have transcribed it all correctly. But the sense is clear. Being notes, it is not always very grammatical.' (en)

RemarksRemarks regarding the annotation. (en)

Possibly to be considered notes for D'Ewes' letter to Anthony Tuckney, 4 June 1649. (en)


  1. ^  Burnett, Andrew M. (2020), The Hidden Treasures of this Happy Land. A History of Numismatics in Britain from the Renaissance to the Enlightenment, BNS Special Publ. No 14 = RNS Special Publ. No 58, London, Spink & Son.