[From Clay's Currency, Manx Soc vol 17, 1869]
" It is a trite, but by no means a
worn-out idea, that a coin, could it speak,
would be able to relate a stranger story than any other article to which imagination might give a voice."
REVIOUS to the year 1646, the coins called ducatoons or ducktoons, with their halves and quarters, were in circulation in the island, being the coinage of the Low Countries (Nether-lands), and chiefly of the date of 1622 to 1640, about the time of Philip IV., and most probably they found their way into the island through barter for produce. The ducatoon of Flanders weighed 1oz, 92gr., and as a coin it was worth, in 1622, 5s 61/8d., but its value as bullion was 5s. 4d.
But though ducatoons were valued at 5s. 61/8d. they were usually passed for 6s., the half ducatoon for 3s., and the quarter ducatoon for 1s. 6d. As might be expected in a locality so short of circulating medium, and having no coinage of its own at the time, many forgeries of this Dutch money were circulated to the great injury of the inhabitants. Consequently, in one of the earliest records of the island, 1646, touching on the subject of coinage, we find it stated in the statutes-" That, in consequence of some false money being coined called ducatones or ducketoons, the Tynwald passed a law adjudging it to be treason." (vide Mill's Statutes of the Isle of Man, p. 3, temp. James I. and seventh Earl of Derby )-A ducatoon of Philip IV. is represented in the annexed woodcut.
" To the Right Honourable James, Earle of Derby, Lord of Mann, and the Isles, &c.
" The humble Petition of your Lordship's Servants, the Officers and twenty-four Keyes of the said Island, Sheweth:
" That forasmuch as we have understood and heard of a foule Misdemeanor comitted lately in this island by certain Men which came lately out of England, in that they did coyne and utter false Moneys called Ducketoons, to the Number of four at the least, and perhaps more of the same kind, or of some other Stampe in base Mettle, as Pewter or such like; which foule and enormous Offence, as we have understood, is by the Lawes of all Nations a Case of High Treason: And whereas " we find no particular or express Law in Writing amongst the Records of our Laws which punctually provides against such Offences, our Nation having been so happy hitherto as that not ever any such Offence or Misderneanor was heard of or" known to be comitted, perpetrated, or done in this Island; we humbly pray your Lordship, that for the Prevention of such like Inconveniences hereafter, it bee enacted and established for Law by your Lordship's Confirmation, That if any Person or Persons whatsoever shall hereafter falsifie, forge and counter-feit, clip or diminish, any kind of Current Coyne, or shall bring false Money into the Island counterfeit to such Current Money as aforesaid, knowing the same to be false or counterfeit, and do Merchandize or make Payment thereof, in deceit of this our Countrey and People, and be thereof lawfully convicted according to the Course of Trials for Life and Death in this Island, all and every such Person or Persons soe offending shall be adjudged, deemed, and taken to he in the Case of High Treason; and for the same shall forfeit Life, Lands, Tenements, Goods and Chattles, to the Lord of this Isle and his Heirs, as in the Cases of other Treasons they use to do by the Lawes of this Land.
[Signed by the Officers and 24 Keys.]
" March 10th, 1646.
" I do approve of the Petitioners Request, and confirme the same as an Act, to be published for a Law at the next Tinwald. "JAMES DERBY."
Thus it was treason in the Isle of Man to execute forgeries on a copper coinage, whilst in England, at that time, it was confined to the coinage of gold and silver. Hence we find, in the reign of Edward I. two hundred and eighty Jews were hanged in one day, for clipping the current Coin of the realm. This grave offence was unknown to the island, previous to the circumstances which led to the passing of the above Act. The Lord of Man had the prerogative of coining; but the pieces were not legal, until sanctioned by the Tynwald, which sanction was generally obtained during the following year; and this has led to the supposition that there were more coins minted than was the fact, and also led Train and others to speak of coinage which, in reality, was never legalised or circulated.
It is not, however, very clear whether the forgeries above alluded to were brought in by the Dutch themselves, along with, or at the same period as the genuine coinage, or were of Manx or other origin. The former idea is undoubtedly the most probable one, as the islanders, having no mint or coinage of their own, were not very capable of successfully forging the coins of other countries. It is quite clear that no coins were known belonging to the island previous to 1646, except those traditional ones, spoken of by Bishop Meyrick and corroborated by Feltham.
Dr. Aquila Smith, of Dublin, (a very able numismatist,) writes to me that ducatoons, valued 6s., with half and quarter ducatoons, were current in Ireland, by proclamation, in 1683. (vide "Simon on Irish Coins," edit. 1749, page 56.) From these remarks it is pretty clear what the Tynwald law above quoted, alluded to.
At this period (1647) an Act was passed, and confirmed in 1649, by the Insular Council, regulating the interest of money, which was then fixed at ten per cent, as follows:-
" It is approved of, confirmed, and published at the Tinwald Court holden the xxiiijth day of June 1649, (as in the Exchequer Book for that Yeare appeareth,) That all oppressive Contracts for Loane of Money, either in Money or by Mortgage, or by Wares or Comodities, or in any other Wayes whatsoever, above the Rate of Ten Pounds in the Hundred Pounds, shall be rectifyed and punished by the Court of Chancery in this Isle, as well by the " fining and punishing of all such Extortions and oppressive " Contracts for Loane of Money, or otherwise, as aforesaid, as also for the relieving of the Party or Parties that is or shall be oppressed, as already hath been punished and proceeded in `' the said Court, as that Court shall think fit and reasonable according to the Nature and Condition of the Fact and Oppression committed or done."
I will here mention a small coin issued at the city of Norwich, by John Hutton, in 1657, on the Obv. of which is JOHN HUTTON, and the triune without armour or spurs, and severely flexed limbs; date 1657. On the Rev., NORWICH. IN . JHXE. This piece is remarkable, as having upon it the triune, eleven years earlier than it can be found on any coin connected with the Isle of Man, and is another proof that the armed limbs are of modern date. (vide photo. plate i. No. o.) Along with this, I may here mention another small coin, or rather token, issued in London in 1665, by "Timothy Phelps at " the Eagle & Child," which crest is upon the Obv.; whilst the Rev. reads " In Tooles Street 166D." Here again is the Derby, or Stanley crest on a coin, many years before it appeared on the coinage of the Isle of Man. In these early tokens of English, or rather London, tavern traders' tokens, I find (from the work by J. H. Burns, called " A Descriptive Catalogue of a Collection " presented by H. B. H. Beaufoy to the Corporation of London), in addition to the one here given in photo. (plate i. figure 6), the following: Eagle and Child, Stanley Crest; Rev. T. K. G. (p. 4, No. 18). Also (No. 1040), Eagle and Child in the field; Rev. IN TVTTLE STREET; in the field, ROGER COOKE. CHANLER.
1668. In the year 1668 appeared the first coin of the island which has been handed down to us to the present time; and if any earlier impression of it was ever circulated
(as hinted by Manx historians), we have at least no positive proofs of it. This coinage of 1668 was known as John Murrey's Pence. It is impossible to say where it was minted: certainly not very likely in the island; but most probably in Birmingham. It has on its Obv. JOHN MVRREY .' 1668 *; in the centre, HIS PENNY. I. M. On the Rev. the triune; QVOCVNQVE. GESSERIS . STABIT. The limbs unarmed, but have near the heels, something like stars. The woodcut on the preceding page is a faithful representation of this interesting issue.
The John Murrey, issuer of this early coin, subsequently gave security to exchange his pennies, which his executors afterwards performed, when the copper money of the Earl of Derby was issued in 1709. It is therefore sufficiently clear that coins of the island, and bearing its arms, were issued thus early in its history; and there is no positive proof of any earlier than of that date. In Oswald's "Vestigia," alluding to this coinage (Murray's), the author states that " no "insular money was ever recorded till 1679, when Governor "Murrey's copper penny became a legal tender." ( Vide Vestig. page 123.) On this question I have to remark that Murrey's coinage was issued in 1668, and there is no proof of it earlier; and this discrepancy can only be accounted for, by not allowing it to be called a coin until the date of the Tynwald law legalising it. Again, there is no record of any governor of the name of Murrey before the Hon. James Murray, in 1739. It is certain that John Murrey was an opulent trader or merchant in Douglas, who felt severely the want of small coinage, and issued his penny as a substitute, until better could be obtained. On carefully searching the statutes of the Isle of Man, I cannot find recorded, any person connected with the official characters of the island, or otherwise, of the name of John Murrey so early as 1668, the date which the coin called John Murrey's Pence bears upon it. The earliest of that name in the records, is that of Robert Murrey, in the year 1691, one of the twenty-four Keys-men of that year (but not a governor), and who might probably be the son or grandson of the one who issued the coin; but there is no positive evidence that such was the fact. Subsequent information enables me to state, that John Murrey was an opulent trader or merchant in Douglas, and an ancestor of W. W. Christian, Esq., the late water-bailiff I may further add, that the grandson of the above John Murrey was also named John, and who, having been previously British resident consul at Venice, about the year 1758, was afterwards by George III. appointed ambassador to Constantinople, and died in the year 1780.
About the same period with the Murrey penny, appeared various coins from the coast of Ireland. They were gradually received and acknowledged as the means of barters though it is doubtful, if some of them were really coins, but rather small medals, or medalets. Such, however, was the scarcity of small coin in the island, that objects quite worthless in themselves passed as coin, such as flat buttons, or perhaps (as has been previously stated), bits of leather bearing some mark to entitle them to credit. Amongst the foremost of these, were the pieces called Patrick pence, and halfpence, or as stated by some, half-pence, and farthings. These pieces (since they are scarcely entitled to the dignity of coinage) appeared about the year 1670, temp. Charles II.
The first to be noticed is the larger piece, which is generally called the penny. ( Vide photo. plate i., Nos. 7 end 8.) Obv.: A king (David) playing the harp, before which he is kneeling Over the harp is a crown, of a different kind of metal, plugged into the coin, the crown being generally of brass whilst the piece is of copper, and the legend " Floreat Rex." No date or value expressed On the Rev. St. Patrick is standing with the shamrock (trefoil) in his right hand, and in his left a crook; in front of the saint is a crowd of people; on his left a shield (arms of Dublin), and the legend " Ecce Grex." The smaller piece differs in some particulars from the larger one. On the Rev. St. Patrick appears to be casting frown him various reptiles (symbols of Protestants) out of the church, which is seen on the right side of the Coin, and the legend reads, QVIESCAT - PLEBS. There are different varieties of these pieces; some, being all copper, are not plugged. ( vide photo. i. figs. 9,10) [see additional note]
In the smaller piece St. Patrick holds the double metropolitan cross in his left Land, and on both pieces the saint is mitred. The idea of venomous reptiles (being cast out by the saint) which are said to be the Protestants, and are called in an Act of the rebels " the puritanical malignant party," is thus ludicrously hit off by an Irish wit-
He gave the snakes and toads a twist,
And banished all the varmint.
Which probably gave rise to the notion, that venomous reptiles cannot, or do not exist in Ireland, which is of course a mistake. I think the root of the celebrated legend is to be found in this medalet, viz., the smaller piece. (Photo. plate i., fig. 9.)
It is difficult to conceive how these pieces, which were evidently struck for a very different object, could have found their way into the island, and be there received as coins, except, as before stated, from the extreme scarcity of a small circulating medium, compelling the inhabitants to receive almost anything as coins. And that these really were so circulated, the Tynwald law (to be quoted hereafter) fully proves. Simon conjectures these pieces were struck by the rebels (Ruding unhesitatingly states them as struck temp. Charles I.), who pretended to act under the King's authority, and in honour of their new order of knighthood. Dr. Aq. Smith, of Dublin, disproves this idea in one of his pamphlets on Irish coinage; and I must confess that Simon's conjectures do not seem to me to be sufficiently clear.
Along with these Patrick pieces, &c., about the same period appeared on the island Butchers Halfpence What is meant by Butchers Halfpence is not very difficult of explanation, although it is more difficult to say which of the following pieces was the most accredited, and received as money in the island Train suggests in a note (p. 74), that Butchers Money was probably smuggled from Ireland, and refers to a pamphlet in Trinity College Dublin, in which allusion is made to halfpence so called. What these halfpence really were, was all conjecture, until I, with the assistance of Dr. Aq. Smith, of Dublin, and Dr. W. Freudenthal, of London, happily succeeded in unravelling the difficulty. Dr. Aq. Smith directed my attention to his list of Irish tokens, numbering 399, where the following is placed:-
Obv. LIMERICK BVTCHERS: Agnus Dei. Rev. Butchers Arms: HALFPENNY. 1679. The date of this halfpenny, however, at once disposes of its being the piece alluded to, as it was not in circulation previous to the Tynwald law, put forth to suppress pieces in circulation; and, therefore we must look for the true Butchers Halfpenny as having a circulation previous to the Tynwald law of suppression.
Dr. Aq. Smith afterwards presented me with the following coin, along with the foregoing one, which I consider by its date to have been in circulation on the island, before the Tynwald law of suppression. The obverse has upon it the Dublin
MIC WILSON OF DUBLIN, and on the reverse St. George and the dragon, with the legend HIS HALFPENNY 1672. This date being seven years prior to the Act of Suppression, it follows as a matter of course that it, and no other, was the issue which the Act alluded to. The coin, from which the above sketch was taken, is in fine brass and moderately thick, whilst both obverse and reverse, show considerable beauty of design and execution, very far superior to the Limerick Butchers Halfpenny, already spoken of. About this time, a forgery of the Mic Wilson half-penny was also extensively circulated; but it is very inferior to the brass one, and is struck on thin soft copper. These forgeries were so common, that even at the present time many are to be found, whilst it is very rare indeed, to find a genuine brass Mic Wilson halfpenny in fine condition.
Before quitting these coins, I may remark on the observation of Train (note, page 74)-" That Butchers Money was probably smuggled from Ireland." On the contrary, I believe it was not an act of smuggling at all, but a welcome provision, offered openly by one party, and willingly accepted by the other; in fact, a forced necessity, from the great scarcity of small coin in the island. In the pamphlet above alluded to, in the Library of Trinity College Dublin, marked RR. 22, 57, apt Scott's Life of Swift, appendix [xxvii. edit. 1814, it states:
" There were certain "brass tokens current in the city of Dublin, commonly called "Butchers Halfpence, for the exchanging of which the undertaker who coined them, had given sufficient security to the Lord Mayor and Corporation. But this undertaker privately counterfeited his own halfpence, insomuch that for one of the original stamp, ten or more of the counterfeits were in circulation; and when any one of these were brought to him to be exchanged, he alleged that he was not bound to do so, because they were counterfeit; and having so cunningly managed the matter, that the cheat could not be brought against him. The city lost, perhaps, little less than £1,000 thereby." .
This also proves that Mic Wilson really struck both the genuine brass, as well as the forgery.
The Tynwald law referring to the above coins is (according to Train) dated 1679. I have, however, been unable to find it in the " Lex Scripta." It states, according to other authorities, as follows:-
" It is ordered, ordained, and enacted at the Tynwald, holden 24th June, 1679, that no copper or brass money, called Butchers Halfpence, Patrick Halfpence, and copper farthings, or any other of that nature, shall pass in the island after the 1st day of January next, or be paid or received by any " manner of persons in exchange or payment after the said day, upon the penalty of three pounds to our Honourable Lord's use, and further punishment at the Governor and officers discretion. Provided always this shall not be prejudicial to, or hinder the passage of, the King's farthings and halfpence, set forth and authorized, or of the brass money called Jno. Murrey's pence, but that the said may still pass according to order, until it be otherwise declared to the contrary."
This law, passed temp. William the ninth Earl of Derby, is deserving of particular notice, for, independent of its proof of a variety of forgeries then current on the island, it shows to what miserable extremities the inhabitants were driven for want of necessary coinage. Such, however, was the extent of the forgeries, it became imperatively necessary to suppress them; particularly those imported from Ireland, under the names of Patrick Pence, and halfpence, and Butchers Halfpence, along with their forgeries; all of which became so abundant, to the injury of English coinage, then only occasionally seen on the island. This Act also proves that then, there were no coins issued belonging to the island, and that the pence called John Murrey's was not a legitimate coin, but issued by private enterprise. It was in reality nothing but a tradesman's token; but being connected with an island tradesman, was allowed afterwards by this Act, to continue in circulation until a better class of coins took its place.
It is also curious that no enactment took place respecting insular coinage for the next twenty-five or thirty years, if we except an Act passed in the year 1691, which reduced the rate of interest which had been ten per cent since 1647, and was further reduced, by the following Act, to six per cent, and which is the modern rate I believe at this time:-
" Statute Book, Fo. 167: [ " Lex Scripta," p. 172.]
"At a Tynwald Court holden at St. John's Chapell, in the Parish of Kirk German, in the Isle of Man, the 30th Day of July, in the Year of our Lord God 1691, before the Right Honourable William Earl of Derby, Lord of the said Isle; Rodger Kenyon, Esquire, Governor; the Lord's Councell, Officers, Deemsters, and 24 Keyes, whose names are subscribed, it is enacted as followeth:
" AN Act that none shall take above Six Pounds for the Loan of an Hundred Pounds, for a Year. Forasmuch as Interest of Money in Loan, being at so high a Rate as ten Pounds for an Hundred Pounds for a Year, cloth not only make Men unable to pay their Debts, and continue the Use of Merchandize and Trade, but their Debts daily increasing, are inforced to sell their Leases, Farmes, and Stocks, at low Rates, to the great Hurt and Prejudice of this Isle; be it therefore enacted by the Right Honourable Lord of this Isle, the Governor, Officers, Deemsters, and twenty-four Keyes, That no Person or Persons from and after the 24th Day of August next ensuing, the Date hereof, upon any Contract after " the said 2ith Day of August, or indirectly for Loan of Moneys, Wares, Merchandizes, or other Comodities, or for any corrupt Loan, Exchange, Bargaine, Mortgages, or any other deceitful! Way or Means, or other Doings whatsoever, above the Value " of six Pounds, for the Forbearance of a Hundred Pounds for a Year; and so after that Rate for a greater or lesser Sums, or for a longer or shorter time: And that all Bonds, Contracts, or Assurances whatsoever, made after the Time aforesaid, for Payment of any Principal or Money to be lent, or covenanted to be performed upon or for any Usuary, whereupon or whereby there shall be reserved or taken above the Rate of six Pounds in the Hundred as aforesaid, shall be utterly void: And be it further enacted by the Authority aforesaid, That if any Person or Persons whatsoever shall do any Act or Acts, Thing or Things, contrary to the Tenor or Meaning of this " Statute, shall forfeit and loose for every such Offence to the Lord of this Isle, and his Heires, the treble Value of the " Moneys, Wares, Merchandizes, or other Things so lent, bargained, sold, or exchanged."
This Act also corrected the laws of interest as they previously existed, as may be seen by former quotations. It may also be mentioned here, that an attempt was subsequently made to repeal the Acts relative to the interest of money, passed in 1647 and 1691; but from information I have received from J. F. Crellin, Esq., M.H.K., the House of Keys rejected the bill by a considerable majority, on the 16th of May, 1865.
So meagre is the historical information in respect to coinage during this period, that the inquirer is left in the dark, and can only guess, as to the manner in which barter was carried on during these twenty or thirty years; John Murrey's pence and the King's farthings and halfpence, being the only coins mentioned in the above Act of 1679. It is also stated in this Act that John Murrey's pence was brass money; nevertheless I believe some of them to have been copper, and that those were the forgeries. Thus it is clear, and can be proved by the coins themselves, that the first known issue of island currency, and which the Act just quoted legalised, was that of 1668; and upon which the triune was for the first time placed on the coinage of the island. As so long an interval occurred before the next issue, it must naturally be supposed that great difficulties arose in consequence, and that appeals were made to proper parties to furnish the island with small currency, of which the inhabitants stood in great need.
Having now arrived at the period when dates were placed upon the coinage of the island, there will be less difficulty in progressing in future.
1705. In this year a piece was struck in silver, which weighed 220 grains, and in the 16ths of an inch scale was 21 in diameter. Of this piece, no account is given in any Tynwald law, nor by any historian; and therefore it must be concluded, from the one or two pieces known only, that they were pattern pieces, and never legalised as coins. This view is corroborated by the fact of their never having been seen in copper. This silver piece (which is here represented in the photo. plate i. figs. 11 and 12) is remarkable: Although the original blank was so large, the date is so cut down, that, half the figures (the lower half) is not on the piece; and some doubts might have reasonably been raised as to the correct interpretation of the date: the upper part, however, of the last numeral (o) appears conclusive. The Obv. shows the eagle as very large, and very like that on (but larger than) the pieces, afterwards to be spoken of, as struck in 1724, except that the tail is fanwise and very broad, whereas in that of 1724 it is straight, and of equal breadth throughout. This piece is also of fine execution and design- almost equal to those of 1723-4 and 1732-3. In the Rev. the limbs are very acutely flexed, lank and lean, and the so called spurs, high on the ankle, and at considerable distance. The edge is engrailed. The fact of this piece being known, gives rise to some doubt in the history of the island currency; for in this we have proof of an excellent design and execution, years before the rude coinage of 1709. Hence the difficulty of admitting such as that of 1709 to have been a legitimate issue; in addition to the knowledge of the fact that those pieces of 1709 were cast, and not struck, as coins usually are. Even the pence of John Murrey, before 1668, were struck, and of fair design and work-manship. There are, however, two if not three answers I think conclusive: (1) The striking and engrailed edge might be deemed too expensive; (2) There are no proofs known of the 1709 issue as being struck; and (lastly), The exigencies of the time rendered any coin, however rude, acceptable. Thus the elegance of design, and excellence of execution, were entirely thrown away, or at least deferred to some future and more favourable opportunity. The size of this piece, also, shows it scarcely could ever have been intended for a Manx penny, if in copper, according to the value of coinage at that period. In the motto, Vs are in place of U. and G in place of I.
1709. The then Earl of Derby issued, in 1709, a coinage of pence and halfpence, the peculiarity of which is, that the pieces are not struck as pieces usually are in the mint process, but cast, and of remarkably rude character. For this rudeness of execution it is difficult to account, as at that period the inhabitants must have seen a great variety of coinage of England, Ireland, and Scotland, as well as of other countries, so far superior to this issue, that it is surprising they put up with it; and has even led some to think that a better class of the same date was struck, and that these cast ones were forgeries. But if this had been the case, I think some of the better ones would have been handed down to us at this time, which they have not. It must, then, be taken for granted that this rude cast coinage was the only legitimate issue of the time known. The date of this issue seems to be on some 1700; but when it is so, it evidently arises from the incompleteness of the cast diminishing the 9 to a cipher. (Hyde photo. i., figs. 13, 1l, 15, 16.)
In a work, mostly fiction, but founded on some interesting facts, entitled " The Great Stanley; or, James VIIth Earl of Derby," &c., by the Rev. J. G. Cumming, M.A., F.G.S. (published in 1867), there are two or three serious mistakes (in the woodcut on the title-page and at the conclusion of the volume) respecting this coin of 1709. It is there represented as dated 1700. No coin of that date was ever issued or known; and though some few pieces show the last figure a cipher, it arises, as I have just explained, from want of room-the planchet being too small. The coin was cast, not struck, in 1709; but legalised in 1710. Again, Mr.Cumming states it to be the coin of William the ninth Earl of Derby; whereas it was the coin of James the tenth earl, and son of William. The latter died in 1707. I may also remark that on the Rev., in Mr. Cumming's book, the limbs are fleshed to the centre, that is, only divided by lines, whereas in the coin of 1709 there is the triangle completed in the centre; and the spurs-if they are spurs-are attached to the heel, whilst in the coin they are nearer the ankle: showing the author was not a numismatist.
Another mistake relating to this coinage is in a recent catalogue, where is announced an " Isle of Man penny of 1799." So it would appear that in some instances the tails of the figure 9 had been cut off, and in other instances added. Both errors might be easily made by a careless observer.
The real date, then, on all this issue is, or is intended to be, 1709. On the Obv. is the Stanley or Derby crest (eagle and child), under which is the chapeau or cap of maintenance; and the motto, SANS CHANGER (without changing). On the Rev. the triune, the three limbs considerably flexed, and in the centre a triangle. The motto reads QVOCVNQVE GESSERIS STABIT, the middle word being erroneously written in place of "Jeceris," and which would literally mean, " Whichever way it is thrown, " it stands," or, " Whichever way you throw, it will stand." Although this coinage bears the date of 1709, and was probably the work of that year, yet it was not a legalised coin (and therefore was not circulated) until the Tynwald Act of 1710 passed as law. This difference of dates on the coins, and that on the Tynwald law has perhaps led Train to record in his list more issues than actually occurred. Thus he ignores the coinage of 1709, and speaks of the issue of 1710. The following is the Act of Tynwald of 1710 referred to:-
" Insulae Monae. [" Lex Scripta," p. 210.]
" At a Tynwald Court holden at St. John's Chappell, the " 24th day of June 1710, before the Honourable " Robert Mawdesley, Esquire, Governor, the Officers, " Deemsters, and 24 Keyes of the said Isle, whose names are subscribed:
" Whereas upon the Scarcity of Brass Money and Want of Change within this Island, it was the general! Request and Desire that our Honourable Lord would be pleased to supply this Defect by coining Brass or Copper Money for the Use of this Island to be currant here; and forasmuch as his Lord-ship has been graciously pleased to comply with the said Request, and hath sent over a considerable Quantity of Copper Pence and Halfpence, it is therefore published, proclaimed,and declared upon the Tynwald Hill, That the said Copper Pence and Halfpence shall at ad Times after this Day be currant and passable within this Island (in all Receipts and Payments) for Pence and Halfpence as aforesaid, and that the same will be received at that Value into, and paid out of his Lordship's Treasury at the same Value, in Receipts for Rents and other Revenues, and in Payment out of Sallarys and other necessary Disbursement; and that from henceforth no Person shall be obliged to take any other Brass or Copper Money save only the Halfpence and Farthings now passable and currant in that Part of Great Britain formerly called England: And it is this Day also published, proclaimed, and declared, That if any Person or Persons whatsoever shall be found and lawfully convicted of counterfeiting any of the said Pence and Halfpence, bringing into this Isle, uttering or paying any of the said Pence and Halfpence, knowing them to be counterfeit, such Person or Persons shall forfeit and be punished for the same after such Manner as is declared by an Act made in the Year 1646, concerning the coining and passing false and counterfeit Money, viz. such Person or Persons so offending shall be adjudged, deemed, and taken to be in the Case of High Treason, and for the same shall forfeit Life, Land, Tenements, Goods, Chattles, &c. to the Lord of this Isle and his Heirs, as in Cases of other Treasons they used to do by the Laws of this Land: And the better to find out whether there be any Counterfeits either made or carried into this Island, it is hereby ordered and declared, That on the second Thursday in dime in every Year, all and every Person or Persons who have any of the said Copper Pence and Halfpence in their Custody shall bring in the same unto the Captaine of their respective Parishes, to be counted and reckoned by him, and an Account to be returned by the said Captaine unto the Governor, Deputy Governor, or Receiver for the Time being, what Quantity of the said Money is within his Parish: And if any Person or Persons shall fail or neglect to bring in what Pence and Halfpence he hath in his Custody, to be so counted and reckoned as afforesaid, such Person or Persons so neglecting shall be fined in twenty Shillings, besides other Punishment, such as his Obstinacy or Neglect shall demeritt.-
Signed: John Parr. Robert Mawdesley, Chris. Parker, John Rowe, William Sedden. John Stevenson, Thomas Stevenson, Ewan Christian, John Wattleworth, Will. Christian, Robt. Moor, Nicholas Christian, John Wattleworth, Sill. Radcliff, Dan. Lace, Robt. Christian, James Chris tian, Edm. Corlet, Thos. Corlett, John Curghey, Ro. Curghey, Will. Tyldesley, John Fargher, Thomas Christian, James Bancks."
" Lathom, 30th August, 1710.
" I allowe of and give my Consent to the within-mentioned " Act, and order that the same be published at the Tynwald Hill according to the usual Forme and Custome of my Isle of " Mann. " DERBY."
" At a Tynwald Court holden at St. John's Chappell the 20th Day of October 1710. The foregoing Act was this Day proclaimed and published "upon the Tynwald Hill in due Forme of Law.-Signed: J. " Parr, Dan. Mylrea, Robert Mawdesley, J. Rowe, Will. Sedden. 'J. Stevenson, Ewan Christian, Cha. Moor, Tho. Stevenson, " J. Oates, Will. Tyldesley, Robt. Curghey, Thos. Corlett, John " Harrison, James Bancks, Robt. Christian, Tho. Christian, " John Wattleworth, Robt. Moor, Sill. Radcliff, Will. Christian, "John Wattleworth, James Christian, John Curghey, Daniel " Lace."
There is no record showing to what extent this coinage was issued by the Earl of Derby.
The late Archbishop Whately made some rather ungenerous remarks on this coinage of 1709-10, by stating that the motto on the Manx money had often been the subject of a jest- that is with reference to the scarcity and badness of the coin. "'Sans Changer' continues the Archbishop, "is interpreted " ' Short of change,' or ' No change to be had."' And as to the other motto, " Quocunque Jeceris Stabit," he interprets it, " Wherever you may carry it, it will not pass," i.e. " it will " stand', or stick." These attempts at ridicule were levelled at this issue of 1709-10. At all events, the Act of 1710 legalises this coinage, bad as it is; and we are bound to receive it as authentic, having no better to show, of the same date of issue. (Vide Photo. plate i., figs. 13, 14, 15, and 16.)
1723. It was fourteen years after this that a new coinage appeared, but from its extreme scarcity and beauty, and from the fact of its not being recorded in the statutes as sanctioned by the laws, there is every reason to believe that the pieces handed down to us, which bear the date of 1723, were rather designs, or pattern pieces, on approval for island issue. At all events, the design, though it had some grave faults, was a great step in advance of numismatic excellence, and is very beautiful when compared with the rude issue of 1709. This new coinage has the triune on the Rev., much flexed, and now cased in armour, spurred, &c., with the usual motto, the middle word of which is GESSERIS. On the Obv. is the Stanley crest, and its usual motto. The designs are, however, very flat, that is, very little raised from the field; and the eagle is somewhat larger, and has longer legs, and its mouth is wider open, than in subsequent issues. These pattern pieces (at least the halfpenny) were struck in silver; they were not shillings, as Mr. Oswald (in his "Vestigia" is pleased, but erroneously, to call them. The coins of 1723 appear to have been unknown to Train; and yet the penny and halfpenny are to be found, though rarely, in copper; as well as some double-struck (or rather, mis-strikes) -which are rarer still; all of which are to be found in the collection list in connection with this volume. (Vide photo. plate i., figs. 17, 18, 19, and 20.)
I believe I can trace the workmanship on this coinage as being the design of Mr. Wood, who was the celebrated issuer of the Wood money of George II., intended for Irish circulation, but which was so ill received there, and ridiculed by Dean Swift in the " Drapier Letters." History, however, has proved that, as a coinage, it was far superior to any the Irish had previously had; besides possessing the merit of having upon it the best likeness of George II. extant. The Wood money was afterwards sent to America, where it met with an equally bad reception. This same Wood reproduced this head of George II., with a different reverse, on the beautiful coinage known as the Rosa Americanas, now so scarce and valuable. I mention Wood's name, with these particulars, because I believe it is a settled question that Mr. Wood designed the subsequent coinage of the Isle of Man of 1733, which is acknowledged to be so very beautiful; proving this Mr. Wood to have been a man of good standing, and an excellent designer. Why the pattern pieces of 1723 were not accepted as Manx coinage, history is silent; and we can only guess, that the design being so slightly raised from the surface, might foster the idea of its soon wearing out. At all events, these coins are only known as pattern pieces, which are greatly to be prized when once in the collector's possession. The silver pieces, i.e. copies of the half-pence, are much thinner; and the date figures peculiar: the first figure is like the letter j ; the tail of the 7 is turned backward at its extremity; and the last figure (3) is square-topped.
A correspondent (E. S. Taylor) in Notes and Queries (vol. iii. p. 510, 1st series), in some observations respecting the currency of the Isle of Man, speaks of " the coinage of 1723," whilst, as I believe I have satisfactorily shown, all of that date known, are pattern pieces only, and were never legalised as coins; consequently never circulated as such. The same writer falls into another error where he states, " the earliest coinage of this island was A. D. 1709." Now we have the coin (if not of 1705) of John Murrey, called Murrey's Pence, dated 1668, and, it is said, an earlier issue of the same, both legalised by statute in 1679. (Vide woodcut, p. 49.)
1724. If the fact had not actually been proved by a worn coin of this date, in my possession, I should have denied its existence altogether; and more particularly, as there is no record, traditional or otherwise, to account for it. Train makes no mention of it. Had the pattern pieces of 1723 been accepted, in all probability the Tynwald laws would have legalised the issue in 1724; but here is a coin minted and dated 1724, and of a different type. It also appears worn, as if it had been circulated for some time; but this circumstance might have occurred to a pattern piece if it had been worn in the pocket as a curiosity. The piece is a penny, with a flaw mark from the die, but the rest of the impression is perfect, particularly the date. It is this very flaw in the die, which I believe explains the whole affair: that is, that the die was broken in the striking, and (with the exception of this proof piece preserved) put an end to the matter. Thus, in all probability, this piece was the first as well as the last of this date. The eagle is large, but of ruder design than that of 1723, and its tail broad and straight (not fanwise); and the motto on the Rev. retains the word GESSERIS, as well as V in place of U; in the date figures, the 1 is not turned at its base, and the 7 is also without a turn at its termination. Altogether, the design of both obverse and reverse is coarser, and decidedly different to that of 1723; and certainly not of the same workmanship. (Vide photo. plate 1.1 fig. 21.) 1 consider this piece unique.
In the course of the next ten years the rapid disappearance of the small circulating medium was severely felt; and a further supply was persistently and earnestly sought for: consequently fresh designs were procured. Here, again, we feel confident that Mr. Wood's skill was called into the service; consequently two or three varied and most beautiful designs were struck off for approval, forming specimens of the highest value to the connoisseur, as well as of great historical interest in respect to the currency of the island itself The pieces here spoken of are the following:
1732 (the date divided, 17 = 32). These remarkable pattern pieces, of 'which there are at, least three varieties, possess features very different from any preceding or succeeding coin. The penny (which is the only known size struck) is considerably less than those of 1709, 1723, or 1724. The general design, instead of being flat as in 1723, is in high relief, as in the subsequent issues of 1733: the eagle smaller, and standing more erect, its wings raised higher, the neck having a more acute bend; the tail, in one variety broad and straight, in another fanwise, and in another very narrow near the body; the date is divided, i.e., 17 at the bead of the child's basket or cradle, and 32 at the opposite end-this date, 17 = 32, is not in exergue, as is usual in coins. Then in the motto, " Sans Changer," the words have in one variety a stop between them, in another no stop; the edges of all are plain ; some of the planchets are large, others smaller. But the most distinctive feature is the branch of a tree stuck into the head of the cradle; in some instances having eight leaves, with their points turned a little upwards, in the others six leaves only, and those strictly ovate. The rim is toothed. Thus far the Obv. ; whilst the Rev. presents us, for the first time, with the correct legend, QUOCUNQUE JECERIS STABIT. The limbs of the triune are stouter, and not so acutely flexed ; and between the limbs, also for the first time, the initials J. D. and the figure 1 ; or, James Derby (the tenth earl), the figure 1 denoting one penny. The rim on this reverse is also toothed.
Too much praise cannot be bestowed on these pieces; nor can it be conceived why the designs, or one of them at least, was not adopted, being equally (if not more) beautiful than those issued immediately after. The points of difference not accepted on subsequent coins were,-(1) the tree branch at the head of the cradle; (2) the mode in which the date is divided ; and lastly, the position of the date (not being in exergue). With respect to the first (the tree branch), I would remark that if legends of families are to be regarded at all-and the retention of this legendary crest of the Derbys on subsequent insular coins, proves that they are to be respected-then 1 unhesitatingly state that the designs on these pieces of 17 = 32 are more strictly in accordance with the legend with this tree branch than without it. In order to interest the reader with the beauty of these patterns (first referring him to photo. plate i., figs. 22, 23, 24, and 25), I will give Itim here a copy of the legend, extracted from "Memoirs of the House of Stanley" (4to, Manchester, 1767), preserving the orthography and typographical peculiarities of the period
Sir Thomas Latham lived in the Reign of King Edward III. and he and his Lady being highly advanced in Years, without any other Issue than the abovesaid Lady Stanley; and he being desirous of Male Issue (when he was a Child) but despairing thereof by his own Lady, had a Love Intrigue with a young Gentlewoman of his Acquaintance, whom he kept concealed in a House of Retirement near him, until she bore him a Son, on the news whereof he was greatly rejoiced; but on due consideration there still remained some Articles of Consequence to be adjusted, for the future Peace and Quiet of Sir Thomas's Mind, and the full completion of all his Joys and Wishes, on this grand Occasion.
The first whereof was, how, and in what manner to publish the Birth of his young Son, and he not so much as suspected "to be the real Father of him. And next, how to amuse and secure his Lady from the Pangs of a jealous Mind, and induce her Motherly Care of the young Infant, in such manner, that he might be nursed and brought up in his own House, free from all suspicion or uneasiness betwixt them. And lastly, "that he might with the greater Freedom and Pleaqure oversee and extend his Paternal Benificence to him, as acts of Charity, and thereby screen himself from the ill-natured Reflections of an inquisitive and censorious World.
Wherefore the better to effect these nice and tender Points, he had recourse to a pious Cheat, by imparting the whole Secret to an old trusty Servant he could confide in; and, consulted with him, on the most likely and proper Means to compass his Wishes and Desires.
After several Schemes and Proposals on both sides, they at last hit upon. the following Expedient, which they judged the most probable to Answer all Sir Thomas's Expectations. Wherein they had considered, that, as an Eagle frequently formed her Nest in a large thick Wood, in the most desolate part of his Park, where seldom any thing was seen but Guests qualified for such a dismal habitation ; therefore if the Child
was taken and laid there, as if brought by the Eagle, it might, on a pretended accidental Discovery, compleat the whole Project. Sir Thomas approving hereof, made use of this Event, and gave Directions to the Mother to have the Infant well fed, and richly drest, early the next Morning, at an Hour the Servant was to call for it; which being done, and given to him with Instructions to lay it at the Foot of the Tree the Eagle usually frequented, and so secretly to cover himself from all Observation, that he might see and guard it from all outward Injury, by either Bird or Beast of Prey, which he performed with all imaginable Privacy.
" And here permit me, before I proceed further on this Head, to leave the Child at rest in his new Apartment for a while, and give the Reader, by a short digression, the old Story of a Child said to be found in an Eagle's Nest at Latham, as transmitted to us from Generation to Generation; which runs in the following Terms, viz.
" That Sir Thomas Latham and his Lady, taking their usual walk in his Park, drew near to a Desert, and wild Situation, where it was commonly reported an Eagle usually built her Nest; and, upon their near approach thereof, heard the Cries of a young Child, which they ordered the Servants attending to look for; who, on search, reported it was in the Eagle's Nest, which they directed to be taken down, and to their great Surprize and Wonder, was, on Examination, found to be a Male Infant, dressed in rich Swadling Clothes: And they having no Male Issue, looked upon this Child as a present sent from Heaven, and that it could be no less than the Will of GOD that they should take this desolate Infant under their Care and Protection, which they accordingly did, and had it carefully Nursed and Baptized, by the Name of Latham; and as the Story goes on, he became Possessor of that large Estate, and at his Death left an only Daughter named Isabel, whom Sir John Stanley married; and in Memory of this Event, took the Eagle and Child for his Crest, as since used by his noble Successors the Earls of Derby.
Thus far the Old Tradition, which on due examination, and just Information, will appear to be meer Fable and Fiction, and highly Improbable, when compared with the relation I shall give of this uncommon Transaction, from real Fact.
"Whoever knows any thing of the nature of Hawks in General, (of which the Eagle is principal,) must of consequence know with what Fury and Violence they Strike their Prey, killing all they stoop to at one Stroke, or before they leave it; and knowing this, must allow it morally impossible, that a Bird of Prey of that Strength and rapacious Nature that an Eagle is known to be, should carry a live Child to her Airy unhurt, which she never attends but when Hatching or Rearing her Young, and then tears all to Pieces she intends for herself, or them, as Food. which they while Young are unable to do for " themselves.
Besides, would it not be stretching our Imagination to a great length, to suppose that a young Child, dressed as this (in the tradition) is described to be, should be left exposed in the open Fields as a Prey to all voracious Creatures, destitute of Guard or Care; which is not reasonable to think, unless in Time of Plague, Famine, or War, when some thing like this might possibly Occur, but none of these Articles being alledged in the case before us, nor any Infant known to be missing, we may justly conclude the old Story meer Tradition, without any just Foundation.
Wherefore, let us return to the Babe we left sleeping under the Tree, where we may suppose his Father Sir Thomas took Care he should not lye long on the cold Ground, by paying him an early Visit. when he found him fully awake, and calling for Assistance, which he hastened to give him, by a speedy return Home, and bringing out his Lady and Family to view the surprizing Discovery he had by Accident made that Morning; on Hearing and Sight whereof, they were all filled with Wonder and Amazement, and unanimously agreed, that the Infant's Preservation in so dismal and dangerous a Situation, could be no less than a Miracle; and upon finding it to be a Male Child (which was wanting in the Family) the good old Lady. was enamoured with it, and concluded it to be the will of Heaven, that they should adopt him for their Son and Heir; which was readily agreed to by his Father."
Subsequently Sir Thomas Latham adopted the eagle for his crest-wings spread, and looking back as if it had lost its prey. When the said Sir Thomas Latham was on his death-bed, the fraud was acknowledged, and Oskatel deprived of the main estates, which devolved on Sir Tbomas' daughter, Lady Stanley, whose husband assumed for his crest, the eagle in the act of destroying the child (as a token of conquest over Oskatel and his claims), and such has remained the crest of the family of Stanley, or Derby, ever since.
If this legend is anything like correct - and I maintain that it is just as correct as any other legend can be-the pattern penny of 17 = 32 is much more in accordance with the legend than those of 1723 or 1724, preceding it, or indeed of those which succeeded in 1733, &c., inasmuch as the infant is placed, as it were figuratively, under the tree, and not in the eagles nest, as some editions of the legend extravagantly suppose, and which would have been an impossibility.
Train passes over these beautiful pattern pieces of 17 = 32 with the erroneous remark (page 73) that they " exactly resembled those of 1733, except the division of the date." Now, the slightest examination is sufficient to prove that no two coins could differ more from each other than these do; and he may well add, " I merely mention this to show that the best account of Manx coinages has been incorrect." I confidently ask the reader, on examining the figures 22, 23, 24, and 25 on photo. plate i., and comparing them with figures 26 and 27 on the same plate, and figures 1 and 2 on photo. plate ii., whether this assertion of Train's can be maintained.
A deficiency in the small currency of the island being at this period severely felt, earnest solicitations were again made by the authorities of the island, with a view to provide a remedy. These solicitations culminated in the following request of the Tynwald Court; and its substance constituted a law passed on the 25th of June, 1733:
At a Tynwald Court holden at St. John~s Chappel the " twenty-fifth day of June Anno Domini 1733, before " the Honourable Thomas Horton, Esq. Governor, the " Ofticers, Deemsters, and twenty-four Keyes of the " said Isle, whose Names are subscribed:
" Whereas upon the Scarcity of Brass Money and Want of Change within this Island, it was the general Request and Desire that our Honourable Lord would be pleased to supply this Defect by coyning Brass or Copper Money for the Use of this Island to be current here; and forasmuch as his Lordship hath been graciously pleased to comply with the said Request, and hath sent over three hundred Pounds in Copper Pence, and two hundred Pounds in Copper Halfpence; it is therefore published, proclaimed, and declared upon the Tynwald Hill, That the above-mentioned Sums of three Hundred Pounds in Copper Pence, and two hundred Pounds in Halfpence, shall at all Times after this Day be current and passable in Change within this Island (in all Receipts and Payments) for Pence and Halfpence as aforesaid, and that the same will be received at that Value into, and paid out of his Lordship's Treasury at the same Value in Receipts for Rents and other Revenues, and in Payments out of Sallarys and other necessary Disbursements; and that from henceforth no Person shall be obliged to take any other Brass or Copper Money whatsoever: And it is this day also proclaimed and declared, That if any Person or Persons whatsoever shall be found and lawfi-illy convicted of counterfeiting any of the said Pence and Halfpence, bringing into this Isle, uttering, or paying any of the said Pence and Halfpence, knowing them to be counterfeit, such Person or Persons shall forfeit and be punished for the same after such Manner as is declared by an Act made in the Year 1646 concerning the coyning and passing false and counterfeit Money, viz. such Person or Persons so offending shall be adjudged and deemed and taken to be in the case of High Treason, and for the same shall forfeit Life, Lands, Tenements, Goods, Chattles, to the Lord of this Isle and his Heirs, as in Cases of otber Treasons they used to do by the Laws of this Land: And the better to find out whether there be any Counterfeits either made or carryed into this Island, it is hereby ordered and declared, That on the second Thursday in June in every Year all and every Person or Persons who have any of the said Copper Pence and Halfpence in their Custody shall bring in the same unto the Captain of their respective Parishes to be counted and reckoned by him, and an Account to be returned by the said Captain unto the Governor, Deputy Governor, or Receiver for the Time being, what Quantity of the said Money is within his Parish; and if any Person or Persons shall faile or neglect to bring in what Pence or Halfpence he hath in his Custody to be so counted and reckoned as aforesaid, such Person or Persons so neglecting shall be fined in twenty Shillings, besides other Punishment, such as his Obstinacy or Neglect shall demerit. And be it hereby further ordered, enacted, and ordained, That the Act made and passed at a Tynwald Court holden at St. John's Chappel the 24th day of June 1710, (before the Hon. Robert Mawdesley, Esquire, Governor, the, Officers, Deemsters, and twenty-four Keyes of the said Isle,) for the Coynage of Copper Pence and Halfpence, be repealed;and the same is by the Authority of this Court abrogated and repealed accordingly.-(Signed) : Cha. Moor, Nich. Christian. Thomas Horton, James Horton, William Stonier, Cha. Stanley, Dan. Mylrea.-24 Keyes: John Stevenson, John Wattleworth, John Garrett, John Murrey, John Taubman, Tho. Stevenson, Rob. Maddrell, Cha. Killey, William Stevenson, John Lace, William Qualtrough, John Christian, Quayle Curphey, William Murrey, William Christian, John Christian, Richard Tyldesley, Matth. Christian, John Moor, John Oates, Edward Christian.
" I do allow of, and give my consent to the within-mentioned Act, and order that the same be published at the Tynwald Hill according to the usuall Forme and Custom of my Isle of Mann.
Knowsley, 5th June, 1733. " DERBY."
At a Tynwald Court holden at St. John's Chappel the " 25th Day of June 1733:
The beforegoing Act was this day proclaimed and published upon the Tynwald Hill in due Forme of Law.-(Signed)
Charles Moor, Nich. Christian. Thomas Horton, James Horton, William Stonier, Cha. Stanley, Dan. Mylrea.-24 Keyes: John Stevenson, John Wattleworth, John Murray, John Garrett, John Christian, John Taubman, William Murrey, Rob. Maddrell, Wm. Qualtrough, Tho. Stevenson, Quayle Curphey, William Stevenson, John Christian, William Christian, Matth. Christian, John Lace, John Moore, John Oates, Cha Killey."
1733. We now come to the consideration of the most beautiful coinage ever circulated on the island-that of 1733 The annexed list shows not only the pattern pieces in silver (not shillings, as has been stated before), but also the proofs of the copper, or rather brass issues, both pennies and half-pence, as legalised for circulation by the preceding act and proclamation of Tynwald. In the edition of Train, 1845, p. 76, is repeated the mistake from Oswald's " guide," p. 55, that a silver coinage was struck by the Earl of Derby in 1723 and 1733. But according to Oswald, it was questionable if ever these pieces were put into circulation. How these writers could have made such mistakes is difficult to conceive; the pieces being merely fac-similes, in silver, of the penny and halfpenny of 1733. With their halfpenny and penny mark upon them, their weight and thickness in silver might have convinced.the veriest tyro in numismatics that they were not intended for coins, but for patterns of coins similar to those of 1723. No less than eighteen of these pieces are recorded in the annexed list. The patterns in silver of both pence and halfpence, as well as their congenors in copper and brass, are all of one type, so nearly that one description will serve for the whole of this series :-
Obv. The eagle is larger, wings not so much elevated as in those of 17 = 32, its neck less acutely bent, and the tail fanwise; edge plain, rim toothed, and the date not divided, with square-topped figures placed in exergue; no sprig or branch at the head of the cradle; and, lastly, a large dot between SANS and CHANGER.
Rev. The triune is more acutely flexed; the middle word IECERIS, and the initials I. D. and figure 1 retained, as in 17 = 32 ; rim toothed.
This description will serve for the whole of this beautiful series. (Vide photo. plate i., figs. 26, 27; and photo. plate ii., figs. 1, 2.) 1 regret, however, to add that forgeries are not wanting in this series: one, a penny struck on thin copper, on which the first word of the legend reads OUOCUNOUE. (Vide photo. plate ii., fig. 3). The halfpenny is also often forged on very thin soft copper; the only difference observable is, the legend on the obverse, as well as on the reverse, is more widely spread; of course, the third character, or numeral on the penny is 1, but on the halfpenny it is ½
Having said all that is necessary in reference to the numismatic description of this series, I may venture to state, that so thoroughly had the island been drained of any legitimate coinage, and so over-run was it with forgeries, that it was found absolutely necessary, when the Tynwald Act of 1733 was obtained, to declare all previously issued coins illegal. The severity and apparent injustice of such a declaration could only be accounted for by the extent to which the forgeries had been carried, and the very small amount of true coinage then in circulation.
Between the years 1830 and 1838, most of the copper currency of the island was of foreign origin, and of the most worthless character. The following extract from the Mona Herald, of May 2,1834, shows the state of the copper currency: "We find and experience that the island is being overrun with the basest coin that could be brought from any of the lowest "states of Europe." And again, in the Manx Sun, September, 1838, the following is recorded .-" Very recently, an inhabitant of this island, when on a tour in Wales, found at a large smelting works, two casks of base coin, which were about to be smelted. He, however, purchased them for £30, and sent them to the island for circulation, by which imposition he derived a nefarious profit of two to three hundred per cent. To such a degree has this nuisance extended, that many of the retail tradesmen in Douglas are daily in possession of from £20 to £40, nominal value, of this trash, taken in the way of business ; the necessary consequence of which is, that there is no getting change for a sovereign or local note without taking one half of it in this base copper." This foreign mintage displaced in a great measure the copper pence and halfpence struck in the Tower of London, and designed for the island; and it being of less value than the coinage of Great Britain, a British shilling being equal to fourteen pence Manx, that £1. 3s. 4d. Manx was equivalent to £1 sterling English. These were the terms on which negotiations were based. The vast influx of foreign coin at this period led ultimately to a bill to assimilate the island currency with that of England, which received the royal assent on the 3rd of January, 1840, and was proclaimed at the Tynwald on the 17th of March following.
The size of 1733 coinage corresponds with the English coins, but not the value; the penny being the size of the English halfpenny, and the Manx halfpenny the size of the English farthing.
Regarding the issue of this coinage of 1733, the Earl of Derby sent in the first issue £300 in pence, and £200 in halfpence, which, according to the population of the island at the time (about 15,000), might be considered ample, as it consisted of 72,000 pence and 96,000 halfpence, or about eleven pieces of copper to every man, woman, and child on the island. But even this large issue disappeared rapidly, and we find in Mr. Twisse's " History of Drogheda" that at this period these coins were extensively circulated all along the Irish coast. The simple reason was, that their intrinsic value was far superior to those coins in use in Ireland, which was at that time even worse off than the Isle of Man. In consequence, however, of this rapid withdrawal, the Earl of Derby forwarded a second supply of £250 in pence and £150 in halfpence, making in all 132,000 pence and 168,000 halfpence in twenty-four years, or about twenty pieces per head of population. Then, again, if the value sent was English value in pounds, which in all probability it was (although there is no direct proof of it), the number of pieces would have been considerably larger. Still the drain went on, and it is remarkable that steps were not taken to depreciate its value a little, which would at once have put a cheek to its outgoing. In place of this, however, the Tynwald Acts were merely made more stringent; and therefore we find in Mills' Statutes that " all persons, once in every year, were to bring to their respective captains of their parishes such brass and copper money, to be examined and counted, and the account thereof to be returned by them to the governor." I mainly rest on the evidence of this necessary Act, as proving that very many of the copper issues at the time were forgeries.
Before this series of coins is dismissed, I may observe that up to this period the triune had for its centre the triangle A, in accordance with the heraldic description. Subsequently, as observed on Athol coins, the centre was formed of three cones, point to point like arrow heads; but after the period of the Athol coins, these centres merged into simple lines, or, as it is heraldically termed, fleshed and armed to the centre.
A curious remark was made by one of my correspondents during my numismatic inquiries, that his grandfather's grandfather, who was living in 1733, and who was then about twenty two years of age, stated that the brass cannon were taken from the castle at Rushen, to be converted into this issue of 1733. This is extremely probable, but wants further confirmation; but, if it was a fact, it was not the first time that the arts of war had contributed to the arts of peace.
The next twenty-five years were productive of many and important changes in the island's history. The ownership of the island had, during this interval, been transferred to His Grace, James Duke of Athol, Lord Strange, Lord of Man and the Isles, &c., by the right of marriage of John, Marquis of Athol, with Emilia Stanley, daughter of James the seventh Earl of Derby. The immediate and subsequent bearings of this transfer, upon the coinage of the island, we shall next proceed to narrate.
Some further details of the Patrick Coppers has been given to me: They were originally minted for use in Ireland but enjoyed a long life in North America as an English Quaker merchant in Dublin named Mark Newby (or Newbie) acquired a large supply of these coins which he took with him in 1681 when he emigrated to West New Jersey (until 1702 New Jersey was divided into separate Eastern and Western colonies). On May 18, 1682 the General Free Assembly of West New Jersey granted Newby's coppers legal tender status and allowed them to circulate as small change at the rate of a halfpenny. They filled an important need in local commerce and remained in circulation throughout the colonial period (possibly into the early 19th century).
As Clay hints, the origin of these coins is somewhat obscure and several theories have been put forward:
One is that they were minted in Dublin around the period 1674-1675 and had some official standing. A single smaller size or "farthing" coin was found in a hoard of 273 coins recovered from the yacht Mary which sank on March 24, 1675, on its way from Dublin to Chester, which dates the production of these coins date to 1675 or earlier. It is possible that they were part of a coinage sanctioned by Arthur, Earl of Essex, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland from 1672 to 1677.
Another theory is that they were produced some five years earlier and were minted following a request by James Butler Duke of Ormonde in 1667 during his second term as Lord Lieutenant (1661-1669) - the design being carefully chosen to support the Remonstrant position that Roman Catholics could both remain true to their faith and also be loyal subjects of the English King. St Patrick here representing the casting out of the hated Cromwellian evil spirits by the restored Charles II. (Oliver Hooper A Note on the Typology of the St. Patrick Coinage in its Restoration Context to be published New York: American Numismatic Society 2005 - thanks to John Lorenzo for providing this and the other information)
The Royalist connection of the motto, the use of a drop of molten brass to 'gild' the crown on the obverse (as well as an aid to preventing counterfeiting) support a post restoration issue (earlier theories had dated them to Irish rebels of c. 1641). These coins are found in only about ten variations of dies which small number (probably around five obverse dies and six reverse dies used in nine or ten combinations) suggests a rather brief minting period, that could at a maximum have only extend over the life of the five obverse dies and probably not more than a year.