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Medieval brooch made from silver penny is declared a treasure after it was found at Marham in Norfolk

The medieval brooch or badge made from a silver penny in the 1070s. Picture: Courtesy of Norfolk Coronoer's Court

The medieval brooch or badge made from a silver penny in the 1070s. Picture: Courtesy of Norfolk Coronoer's Court

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It was made from a coin struck during the reign of William I almost 1,000 years ago.

And now a precious piece of jewellery found at Marham in Norfolk has been declared treasure at an inquest in Norwich today (Tuesday, June 27).

Jacqueline Lake, senior coroner, said that although a single silver penny would not normally be classed as treasure, the piece had been converted into a brooch or badge by adding a copper alloy backplate and pin, making it a personal item.

Quoting a report from the British Museum’s curator of early medieval coins, Dr Gareth Williams, Mrs Lake said: “This is an example of a typical brooch or badge made during the 10th and 11th centuries, but particularly common in the reign of Edward the Confessor to the reign of William II.

“As is usual for this type of object, the reverse design of a cross is displayed, suggesting it may have been some sort of religious brooch.”

Mrs Lake said the coin was probably struck in the early to mid 1070s.

She said: “Although the type cannot be dated precisely it was probably convert to a brooch or badge shortly after the time that the coin was current.”

Classing an item as treasure means its finder must offer it for sale to a museum at a price set by the Treasure Valuation Committee.

Mrs Lake said Norwich Castle Museum had expressed an interest in acquiring the brooch or badge.

The item was found by Barry Howard using a metal detector on the property of Brian Watkins in January 2016.

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