In Pictures: A closer look at the angels and dragons of the Asthall Hoard at the Ashmolean

| 06 December 2010
a photo of a hoard of gold coins
Some of the gold angels from the Asthall Hoard, 1476-1526, as they came from the ground© University of Oxford
In Pictures: A sneak preview of the Asthall Hoard.

Historians at the Ashmolean Museum are still speculating about the meaning and function of the Asthall Hoard of Tudor coins. Some say they were believed to have magical and kingly healing powers, others that their distinctive liveries of angels defeating dragons denote the rise of Tudor power in the Wars of the Roses.

Whatever their meaning the hoard represents a remarkable collection, which is due to go on display in the Ashmolean’s coins gallery in March 2011. Before then you can get a sneak preview of the exquisite detail and designs below. 

a photo of a gold coin with a figure slaying a dragon
Gold angel obverse: Archangel Michael slaying the dragon, HENRY VII 1485-1509© University of Oxford
a photo of a gold coin with a ship motif on it
Gold angel reverse: Ship super-imposed by a cross and shield, HENRY VII 1485-1509© University of Oxford
a photo of a gold coin with a figure slaying a dragon
Gold half angel obverse: Archangel Michael slaying the dragon, HENRY VIII 1509-1547© University of Oxford
a photo of a gold coin with a ship motif on it
Gold half angel reverse: Ship super-imposed by a cross and shield, HENRY VIII 1509-1547© University of Oxford
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