Lead Tokens

Lead, being easily worked, is found in many forms in English fields: musket balls, pewter objects (such as buttons), seals, tokens, weights, and just plain old lumps.

It's thought that from the mid-medieval period, lead tokens such as the ones shown above were given to farm workers as payment which could be redeemed for food and goods either by the farmer or by arrangement with a local business. Some have very specific weights and might have been used as such; the token on the left, for example, weighs exactly 2 oz.

Sometimes lead was worked into designs and shapes very similar to those on contemporary coins.

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