2.1.2 The Early Medieval Corpus

The Early Medieval Corpus is a database of single finds of coins minted AD 410-1180 found in the British Isles. It was established by Dr Mark Blackburn at the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, with funding from the Leverhulme Trust, and is available from the Fitzwilliam Museum website as an online searchable resource. Although hoards are more dramatic, single finds are more likely to result from accidental loss, and it is therefore safe to assume that they will be representative of the coins circulating in a given area at a given time.

The EMC includes single finds from a number of published sources, including many volumes of the Sylloge of Coins of the British Isles, the British Numismatic Journal's 'Coin Register', Metcalf's Thrymsas and Sceattas (1993/4), and Grierson and Blackburn's Medieval European Coinage (1986). Other records, such as those maintained by Mike Bonser and Arent Pol have been included, and coins recorded in sales catalogues, and back issues of the British Numismatic Journal and Numismatic Chronicle have also been incorporated. New finds are recorded as far as possible, and there are plans to exchange data with the PAS database, although at the time VASLE was set up few early medieval coins were recorded by the PAS and there was little overlap between the two sources, although PAS is now probably the primary recorder of early medieval coinage.

As far as possible the EMC records information about other finds from the site, and as much detail as possible about the circumstances of the find. Precise information about the findspot is recorded where possible, although only four-figure grid references are available via the online database.


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Last updated: Tues Apr 21 2009