Eric Bloodaxe Viking Coin (952 - 954)
This coin is a reproduction of a coin minted between 952 -954 in the city of York by Eric the Bloodaxe, the last Viking ruler of York and independent king of Northumbria.
Eric was the son of King Harald Finehair of Norway. It is assumed that Eric earned his nickname by murdering several of his brothers in order to secure his succession to his father’s throne. During the 9th and 10th century various areas of Northumbria in northern England were controlled by Viking Kings. Eric arrived in York in 947 from Norway and was declared ruler of Northumbria and tasked with defending the land against Danish, Scottish and Irish raiders by the West Saxon dynasty. However, he was removed from power after several months by a rival faction. He again regained power in 952 and reigned for another two years before his death in the battle of Stainmore in 954.
During Eric’s reign he minted two coins and the difference in the design of the coins reflected his changed relationship with the Anglo-Saxon dynasty in Wessex. The first coin minted followed the style of existing Anglo-Saxon coins. However, the second coin of which this reproduction is based features the image of a the sword of St Peter which symbolised warfare and conquest. Reflecting Eirik’s struggles to hold Northumbria by force and promoted his image as rightful ruler of an independent Northumbria.
The original artefact is currently on display at the British Museum and can be viewed on the following link www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=1068680&partId=1&people=53199&peoA=53199-4-7&page=1
These coins are hand stamped by a passionate reenactor who performs historical coin minting demonstrations. As each coin is hand stamped small variations may exist adding to the hand made character of the coins.
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Made from high-quality pewter.