Medieval Trade Weight With Royal Arms 15th Century


Product Code:RNC261-1

1 in stock

1 in stock


Header: Late Medieval Trade Weight With Royal Arms c15th Century

Material: Base metal, probably lead

Period: Late medieval

Date: c14th century AD

Origin: Britain

Condition: AVF, good detail for a utilitarian item, a gouge in the back may have been made when ‘calibrating’ its weight.

Description: A shield-shaped trade weight detailed in relief with the Royal Coat of Arms, it weighs 63g = 2.2 ounces = 1/8th pound. Patinated with its oxide, care should be taken.

Size and Weight: 48mm x 37mm x 5mm, 63g

References: N Biggs, English weights; N Mills, Medieval Artefacts p78 for similar type.

Features and Provenance: The date of this artefact is uncertain but due to the Royal Arms it can’t pre-date 1394 when the fleurs were reduced from multiple to three in each quarter; this became Henry IV’s royal arms and was used with slight changes until 1603.  Medieval trade weights were usually made of lead with a flat underside and hole to the top as per this example. A hand held metal pan scale was used by tradesman and the weights were made in pound, half-pound, quarter and eighth of a pound using the Avoirdupois system that was employed from 1390 in England. This weight is pretty close to its required heft but many unscrupulous tradesman would lighten their weights or increase the weight of their scales for their unsuspecting customers. Regulation was introduced later by stamping with the kings crown, but of course there were various ways around this. The Grocers guild was one of the first to try to regulate its weights and later copper was used for greater accuracy.

Condition Summary. This varies with the age of the artefact and there are grades between

Extremely Fine (EF). Very slight traces of wear, all parts of pattern etc present, visible and clear

Very Fine (VF). Some signs of wear on the higher parts of the relief. all parts of pattern etc present, but may be worn

Fine (F). Wear on the artefact and parts of item and pattern etc may be missing or not visible


Additional information

Weight100 g


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