Æ Farthing. ND. Diameter 15.7mm. * SWAN· WITH· 2· NECKS around; in centre swan with two necks. R. AT· LITLE· SOMERS· KEY around; in centre XXX above M BW (London) 2920; Norweb 6670 Some pitting, otherwise Fine-Good Fine*. *US customers please note that this is strict British grading. RR
Williamson calls it a halfpenny, probably in error. The issuer's name is unknown.
At first I thought that the XXX was perhaps referred to the strength of the ale that the Swan offered for sale, however, The Port and Trade of Early Elizabethan London: Documents, originally published by London Record Society, London, 1972 says 'One other kay in London aforesaid called Somers Kaye conteyninge est and west in length lxxiiij footes and from the water of Thames south and north xxx footes.
Somar's Key, or Sommer’s quay was a general place for the lading and discharging goods, named after a person living there. It was on the south side of Thames Street, fronting the river, next to Billingsgate west. In 1622 it belonged to the Mayor John Reynard. It was left to the City to relieve the inhabitants of some of the toll of London Bridge.
The site was occupied later by Dark House Lane and Great Somers Key and later by Billingsgate Market. Lyons Quay and Somers Quay were acquired by the East India Company in 1796.
British Tokens - 17th Century - London - swan with two necks - Somers quay -
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