Æ Farthing. ND. Diameter 15.8mm. * PHILLIP· STOWER· AT around; in centre a growling bear in chains standing left. R. * THE· BARE· AT· BARE· KEY around; in P*S BW — (Dickinson Southwark 152A; Cf Norweb 6539 (which has a different reverse die). Cleaned, otherwise Fine and much better than the Norweb piece. *US customers please note that this is strict British grading. RRR
Wikipedia says its name derives from the bere or barley brought to the quay for brewing purposes. Its location was between Porter's Quay east and New Bear Quay west. It has also been called 'Great Bear Quay' (1677) and 'Old Bear Quay' (1810). In 1722 and 1755 it was called 'the great Corn Market by Billingsgate'. It was close to the Tower of London, and the Custom House.
Phillip (sic) Stower obviously made use of the barley. In 1655 Philip Stower of St Dunstan in the east parish, inn holder, married Susan Saywell. In 1655/6 he bound apprentices. The token must date to either before his marriage, or after Susan's death.
British Tokens - 17th Century - London - Bear Quay - Philip Stower - the Bear inn -
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