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The Wealth of Anglo-Saxon England$
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Peter Sawyer

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199253937

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199253937.001.0001

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From Edward the Elder to Edward the Confessor (899–1066)

From Edward the Elder to Edward the Confessor (899–1066)

(p.87) 5 From Edward the Elder to Edward the Confessor (899–1066)
The Wealth of Anglo-Saxon England

Peter Sawyer

Oxford University Press

In the early tenth century there was a remarkable contrast between urban development in the Danelaw, with its abundant coinage, and the rest of England where coins were relatively scarce. By conquering the Danelaw English kings acquired its treasure and used it to supply an increasing number of mints. The quality of their coinage declined until the reform c. 973 was made possible by a revival of trade with Germany after the discovery of a rich new source of silver in the 960s. Towns and trade, inland and overseas, flourished. This prosperity attracted Vikings and later, Normans, but the trade continued despite raids and conquests. Stray coin finds suggest that more coins circulated in England in Edward the Confessor's reign than at any other time in the eleventh century.

Keywords:   Danelaw, towns, trade, Vikings, Normans, the word ‘rich’

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