Page last updated at 18:34 GMT, Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Wars of Roses silver coins fetch 29,000 in auction

Henry V
Some of the coins dated from the reign of Henry V

A hoard of silver coins hidden in a Northamptonshire field during the Wars of the Roses has fetched more than £29,000 at auction.

The 186 coins, found in Brackley in 2005, were sold at Morton and Eden by the metal detector enthusiast who found them and the owner of the field.

It is thought they were hidden in the summer of 1465 by someone who went into hiding during the dynastic civil war.

They were sold in separate lots for £29,900 at the auction house.

Jeremy Cheek, from the specialist auctioneer, said the coins represented a "sizeable stash of money" at the time.

Silver groat
At the time, a silver groat would have been enough to buy a sheep

Top priced lots included a rare mint from Henry VI's reign, which fetched £1,300, while another coin introduced under Edward IV sold for £1,500.

Mr Cheek said: "The sale went on and on, but there was no let-up in the bidding.

"The landowner and the metal detectorist who unearthed the hoard were both present to witness the sale and they were thrilled with the way it went."

The coins, identified as silver groats by specialists at the British Museum, date mostly from the reigns of Henry V and Henry VI.

The hoard was the equivalent to £6,500 in today's money.

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