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Carolingian Coinage and the Vikings,
by Simon Coupland. Great Britain 2007

Studies on Power and Trade in the 9th Century

presenterad av  Lennart Castenhag

I föreliggande volym har femton av Couplands numismatiska artiklar samlats. De har tidigare publicerats i olika vetenskapliga tidningar. Coupland inleder boken med ett nyskrivet förord där han berättar om sitt intresse för Carolingernas mynt och vikingarnas härjningar. Förordet börjar så här:

I came to the study of Carolingian coinage somewhat by accident in the first year of my doctoral research into the Viking incursions on the Continent. The written sources said that Scandinavian raiders took thousands of pounds of silver in tribute from the Franks, which led me to start asking questions. What form did this silver take: coin or bullion? If it was coin, what kind of coins were in use at this time? Could the economy have supported this loss of silver? I was in Oslo at the time, so I went to the Myntkabinett and asked to borrow books on Carolingian coinage. The staff were very helpful, but didn't have much to offer: Morrison and Grunthal's catalogue, which I soon discovered was highly unreliable, Gariel's two volumes, which were similarly flawed, and Prou's catalogue. None of them answered the kind of questions I was asking, though I did find a few artic1es, particularly those by Philip Grierson and Michael Metcalf, that were helpful. I went back to the Coin Department and asked where I could find the standard artic1e on the coinage of Louis the Pious. I was toId that there wasn't one! So I set out to do the research myself.

The present volume represents the fruit of my studies over the twenty years which have elapsed since then. The major part of it represents a survey of the coinage and economy of the Frankish empire over a hundred-year period, from Charlemagne's accession in 768 to Charles the Bald's Edict of Pitres in 864. The book thus opens with a survey of Charlemagne's coinage (chapter I) and a brief note on one aspect of minting in the Carolingian period which relates to a capitulary of Charlemagne (II). It continues with a study of the coinage of Charlemagne's son Louis the Pious, fiIling the lacuna I had identified earlier (III), and a brief but important note on the chronology of minting in Louis 's reign (IV). Chapters V and VI are similarly brief pieces, the fruit of visits to the Rheinisches Landesmuseum in Trier and the Koninklijk Penningkabinet in Leiden respectively. The former considers the anonymous Christiana religio coinage minted by Louis at Trier, the latter a pair of coins in a ninth-century hoard struck from the same reverse die but under two different rulers.

etc . . . . . . . .

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