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Collector pays £36k for gold coin found in Leicestershire bearing Richard III emblem

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A gold coin bearing Richard III's personal emblem has sold for three times the expected amount after going under the hammer in London.

The artefact, depicting a boar's head, which was discovered in Claybrooke Magna, about 12 miles from Bosworth Battlefield in August, was expected to fetch £12,000.

However, a private collector has bought the item for triple the pre-sale estimate – paying £36,000 for the 500-year-old coin.

Richard MacKinder, heritage officer at Bosworth Battlefield, said: "It's a really interesting find and we would welcome an item like that to our museum – so if the buyer wants to donate it, we'd be more than happy to take it."

Despite the huge interest in the coin, the discovery cannot be classed as a genuine battlefield find.

Richard said: "Technically, it was discovered about 10 to 12 miles away, so it wasn't lost by someone coming into or out of the Bosworth site.

"We know Richard would have travelled down from the north and been carried off toward Leicester following his defeat – which is to the east. So it's unlikely to have been his.

"But all of this interest keeps the pot boiling and that's great for us and for Leicester, but we have to be realistic and accurate."

The coin was sold at Spink auctioneers, in London, on Wednesday.

William MacKay, coin specialist at the auction house, said: "There was fierce competition in the sale room for this exceptional example of a historically-important coin from an interesting location. This is a fantastic result, which shows the demand continues to be strong for top quality, rare English gold coins."

It is among a variety of items discovered near the battleground in Bosworth, which include badges, sword mounts and cannonballs.

However, experts have said this find is unusual as it has remained in almost pristine condition.

The coin – known as an angel because it also depicts St Michael spearing a dragon – dates from about 1484, a year before Richard III was killed at Bosworth Battlefield.

The find has aroused interest after the discovery of human remains, thought to be those of Richard III, at a city car park in August.

Scientists from the University of Leicester are carrying out a series of tests to identify the body.

Results from DNA tests, facial reconstruction, battle wound analysis and a variety of other checks will all contribute to the confirmation of whether or not it is Richard.

The results are expected early next year

Collector pays £36k for gold coin found in Leicestershire bearing Richard III emblem


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