Waveney silver diadem sold in Norwich


04 September 2023
Rare silver coins of the Iceni, Queen Boudica’s tribe, performed particularly well in Chris Rudd’s all-Celtic sale held in Norwich on 16 July, with an extremely rare Waveney silver diadem of circa 50–40 BC, achieving £6,500 (lot 17).

Found at Harleston, Norfolk, in 2019, and said to be the first to be offered for public sale, the coin featured a comparatively naturalistic female head facing right wearing a lunar diadem, while an S-shaped serpent in front of her had a ram-horned head at each end.

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On the reverse, a naturalistic horse galloping left featured tiny ‘s’-shapes for a mane and a leaf-like spear-tail, with a large solar ‘anemone’ and ringed-pellets above, large ringed-pellet below, quatrefoil in front and triple exergual lines below with the middle line beaded.

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Only recently recognised, the coin was superbly struck on a large heavyweight flan of good silver, had a well-featured head, a virtually complete serpent with both heads clearly displayed and a wonderful Whaddon-style horse.