adapted from a design by George Bain based on the Book of Kells home Programme Bookings Shop The Wuffings .
Wuffing Education

Money in Anglo-Saxon East Anglia: Filling Gaps in the Historical Sources


with Dr Mark Blackburn

at Tranmer House, Sutton Hoo (map)
on Saturday 10th October 2009

A day with the nation’s leading specialist on the coinage of East Anglia, which reveals it to be one of the richest regions in England.

East Anglia was one of the richest regions in England during the Anglo-Saxon period, and its wealth is testified by the size of its coinage and the vibrancy of its monetary circulation. No wonder East Anglia was a sought-after prize for Offa and his Mercian successors, but the coinage particularly flourished under the independent East Anglian kings and under Viking sovereignty. Written sources are sadly lacking for this period, but the coins provide the names of five otherwise unknown kings and evidence for remarkable growth of the economy at a time when London was in decline.

Provisional Programme
  10.00 Coffee on arrival  
  10.15 Anglo-Saxon currency: an overview – a survey of coinage and coin use from the departure of the Romans until the Norman Conquest.  
  11.15 Coffee  
  11.45 The kingdom of the East Angles, 7th-9th centuries – the rich and distinctive coinage of East Anglia is testimony to the success of the kings and the importance of trade to the region.  
  12.45 Lunch break  
  14:00 Viking coinage in the Southern Danelaw, 869-927 – coinage gives a rare insight into the effectiveness of King Guthrum and his successors in developing the Scandinavian kingdom and embracing Christianity for political motives.  
  15:00 Tea break  
  15:15 Practical session - studying coin designs, inscriptions and production techniques, and discussing the use of money in the Anglo-Saxon period.  
  16:15 Close  

About Dr Mark Blackburn

Mark Blackburn has been the Keeper of Coins and Medals at the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge since 1991. His research interests include the monetary history of Early Medieval Europe, with particular focus on Anglo-Saxon and Anglo-Norman coinages, and the Viking coinages of Scandinavia and the British Isles; and the recording and analysis of single-finds and their application to monetary circulation. In 1997 he established in Cambridge a national on-line database for coin finds (Corpus of Early Medieval Coin Finds from the British Isles). He was President of the British Numismatic Society (2004-8) and is General Editor of the Sylloge of Coins of the British Isles series.

Some suggestions for further reading
(useful but not essential)

Blackburn, M., ‘Expansion and control: aspects of Anglo-
Scandinavian minting south of the Humber’, in Vikings and the Danelaw. Select Papers from the Proceedings of the Thirteenth Viking Congress, ed. J. Graham-Campbell et al. (Oxford, 2001), 125-42.
Blackburn, M., ‘Productive sites and the pattern of coin loss in England, 600-1180’, in T. Pestell and K. Ulmschneider, eds, Markets in Early Medieval Europe: Trading and ‘Productive’ Sites, 650-850 (Windgather Press, Macclesfield, 2003), pp. 20-36.
Blackburn, M., ‘Presidential Address 2004. Currency under the Vikings. Part 1. Guthrum and the earliest Danelaw coinages’, British Numismatic Journal 75 (2005), pp. 18-43.
Blunt, C.E., B.H.I.H. Stewart, & C.S.S. Lyon, Coinage in Tenth-Century England. (OUP, Oxford, 1989).
Gannon, A., The Iconography of Early Anglo-Saxon Coinage. Sixth to Eighth Centuries (OUP, Oxford, 2003).
Grierson, P., & Mark Blackburn, Medieval European Coinage. 1. The Early Middle Ages (5th - 10th centuries) (CUP, Cambridge, 1986).
Stewart. I., ‘The English and Norman mints, c. 600–1158’, in C.E. Challis (ed.), A New History of the Royal Mint (CUP, Cambridge, 1992), pp. 1–82.
Williams, G., Early Anglo-Saxon Coins (Shire Archaeology, 2008).


Please phone or email to check the availability of places and then send the application form and a cheque for £38, payable to Wuffing Education to:

Wuffing Education,
4 Hilly Fields,
Woodbridge, Suffolk IP12 4DX
(tel : 01394 386498)

Email cliff AT
(replace 'AT' by '@' in order to send email - we used 'AT' to avoid spam robots automatically sending us emails)

Return to list of current Study Days


We have learnt of the fame of the Wuffing folk-lords of long ago, of how those wolf-kings held the ancestral land of East Anglia....
Updated 3 December, 2009
Website by
Adroit Solutions Ltd