If you collect coins or items of historical interest, there is unique selection of collectible Coins available at the Post Office Shop. Produced to commemorate memorable events, many are limited edition to be treasured for years to come. The Coronation of King Canute Brilliant Uncirculated £5 Coin celebrates the 1000th anniversary of King Canute's coronation.
Long before the Norman Invasion of 1066, Canute the Great crossed the North Sea and seized the throne of England. He was a Viking warrior, Prince and son to King Swein Forkbeard of Denmark, and after a campaign of battles that lasted a year, he is understood to have been crowned in London, probably in St. Paul's Cathedral, in 1017.
Capturing the English throne was the beginning of a period of conquest. Before the end of his reign, his empire stretched from England to Denmark, Norway and included part of Sweden. He also strengthened the currency, initiating a series of coins of equal weight to those being used in Denmark and other parts of Scandinavia. As a Christian, and as part of his self-promotion as a peaceful "English" King, he also made many generous gifts to the church, by bringing 20 years of peace and allowing trade and art to flourish, he paved the way for the nation of England we recognise today.
Today, Canute is best known for the story on which he sat on his throne at the water's edge and commanded the tide to turn back. The story shows Canute, unable to halt the approach of the sea, as a humble king, proving to his flattering courtiers that he was only human.
This is the first time that a 1,000 anniversary has been commemorated on a coin and this is a fitting tribute for such a warrior as King Canute. The strong, bold coin design reflects the fact that Canute was a powerful and ancient Nordic King with a great story. It is influenced by the prows of Viking longships, reflecting the proud, determined nature of Canute. The design also includes the particular type of Crown Canute is seen wearing in medieval manuscripts as well. The shaved back-of-the-head hairstyle is associated with Vikings and is also utilised as is Canute's reported long nose.
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