John Conyers - 1675-08-20

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John Conyers, London, 1675/08/20

John Conyers - 1675-08-20
FINA IDUnique ID of the page  14139
InstitutionName of Institution.
InventoryInventory number. BL, Sloane MS 959, ff.106-9
PlacePlace of publication of the book, composition of the document or institution. London 51° 30' 26.42" N, 0° 7' 39.54" W
AuthorAuthor of the document. John Conyers
Associated personsNames of Persons who are mentioned in the annotation.
Publication dateDate when the publication was issued: day - month - year . August 20, 1675
KeywordNumismatic Keywords  Bronze Coins , Corrosion , Hadrian , Constantine , Claudius , Romulus , Local Finds , London , Vespasian , Julius Caesar
LiteratureReference to literature. Stow 15981, Burnett 2020b, p. 12102
LanguageLanguage of the correspondence English
External LinkLink to external information, e.g. Wikpedia 
Other entries for the same diary
DiaryPublication dateDate when the publication was issued: day - month - year .
John Conyers - 1675-08-2020 August 1675
Grand documentOriginal passage from the "Grand document".

'I have severall brassen Coines that was found with these [potsherds], all of the Roman and non[e] other som[e] of w[hi]ch by long continuance are quite eaten through to peices amongst the rest one of a fine mettle finer then bellmettle & as hard w[hi]ch were eaten to peices in the middle onely som[e] of the letters left to shew of the Coynes afirms one Hadrian & one the reverse a large ship rowed amongst others of Constantine & Claudius & Romulus & Rhemis with the wolfe. …
Now in this fleet ditch or river of wells for so Stow tells us it was calld in the conquerors tyme as the new foundacons of the wall for the river was dugg there verry low was found many old Roman Coines of Copper & brass & of all Sorts except gold & verry little Silver & Ring mony nay & of all sistes (? sizes) som[e] as bigg as neare a 5 shillings peece som[e] as of ½ crowne & others as the new coind Copper halfe peny & farthing & som[e] as small as the farthing made in King Charles the first his reigne those with a yelow snipp in their sides & som as small as ½ those farthings.
Now all these Coines laying moist were preserved bright the water washing of[f] the fretting Salt from tyme to tyme so that many of them was washed & wasted thinn & much out of shape etc & … this found neare Holbourne bridg[e] many large brass Coines of note (?) Vespasian & one the Reverse Judea Capta & som[e] seemd to be Copper within & brass without or brass by laying in the earth long turned in som[e] places to Copper or Copper gilded w[i]th a fume of Calaminaris som[e] of these were more antique or woren & som[e] fresher as either clay ground preserved or sand moist ground wasted them & … & one Peeice of Coyne Julius Cesar not so high imbossed as other Coynes but as y' of King Jameses w[hi]ch Picis (?) I vallue other later peeices vizt: Copper Cross one one side & flower de luce the other & medalls of the 24 lattin letters & som[e] of the crucifix & Ave Maries one on side & Crosses one the other & Shipp counters w[i]th Saxon great letters.
Now the Coynes taken upp by St Paulls in the new foundacon of the chirch there in gravel pits dugg of old tyme by the Romans & filled w[i]th rubbish of course gravel Pottsheards som[e] of the mencond redd earth & others of the other old fashiond marked various collourd & marked earth neare 25 foot deep) these Coynes many coverd w[i]th a thick green rust & others quite eaten to rust green collour for the saltnes of this earth being coverd w[i]th such a heighth of black earth may verry well occasion this rust & such a long tract of tyme since lappsed & like a spongy holes like wormeholes intermingld in the yellow firme ground w[hi]ch moysture rockes to & fro…. Now it doth appear the Romans hadd excellent mechanickes vizt pottmakers & stamps of coyne. … now these & many other things not mencond tyles of the brittons Roman tyles & bricks were & are Collected by & in the custody of John Conyers Citizen & Apothecary of London w[hi]ch God permitt & to him be glory in Secula Seculoru[m]. Allso Copper & brass Roman Coynes wch was as bright as if scowerd wth oyle but wasted wth that brightenese it seemes the ditch water clensed them as well as the bright pinns there found, but Silver all black.'

(BL, Sloane MS 959, ff.106-9; Burnett 2020b, p. 1210)


  1. ^  Stow, John (1598) A Survey of London, London.
  2. ^  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.