Yale Publishes Book on Rare Civil War-EraNaseby Cup

Yale University Art Gallery publishes a 144-page book on the Naseby Cup, a silver vessel adorned with 72 rare coins and medals from the English Civil War era. The book provides a detailed exploration of the Cup's history and significance, featuring 185 color illustrations.

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Bijay Laxmi
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Yale Publishes Book on Rare Civil War-EraNaseby Cup

Yale Publishes Book on Rare Civil War-EraNaseby Cup

The Yale University Art Gallery has published a comprehensive 144-page book exploring the Naseby Cup, a remarkable silver drinking vessel standing over two feet tall and adorned with 72 rare coins, medals, and counting tokens from the English Civil War era (1642-51). Titled "The Naseby Cup: Coins and Medals of the English Civil War," the book is written by Benjamin D.R. Hellings, Head of Numismatics and Jackson-Tomasko Associate Curator of Numismatics at the Gallery.

Why this matters: The publication of this book provides a unique window into a pivotal moment in English history, offering insights into the cultural and political significance of theEnglish Civil War. Furthermore, it highlights the importance of preserving and studying historical artifacts, which can shed new light on our understanding of the past and its relevance to contemporary society.

The Naseby Cup was commissioned in 1839 by Lord and Lady Fitzgerald, the owners of the Manor at Naseby, Northamptonshire, England, to commemorate the Battle of Naseby, which took place on June 14, 1645. Crafted by silversmiths Charles Reily and George Storer, the Cup features coins and medals from the Civil War era, including some that may have been sourced from the battlefield itself.

One of the Cup's unique features is its design, which allows viewers to see both the obverse and reverse of each coin simply by looking at the outside and inside of the vessel. Some of the coins showcased are extremely rare, such as a 1652 New England Shilling from the American colonies and a copy of an original gold 1644 Oxford Crown.

The book provides a detailed exploration of the Cup and its coins, featuring 185 color illustrations. It is available to the general public for $25 USD from the Yale University Art Gallery's website, with a $5 discount for Gallery members. "The Naseby Cup: Coins and Medals of the English Civil War"offers readersa fascinating glimpseinto this unique historical artifact and the turbulent era it represents.

The English Civil War, which lasted from 1642 to 1651, was a series of armed conflicts and political machinations between Parliamentarians ("Roundheads") and Royalists ("Cavaliers"), primarily over the manner of England's governance. The Battle of Naseby, fought on June 14, 1645, was a decisive engagement in which the Parliamentarians, led by Sir Thomas Fairfax and Oliver Cromwell, defeated the main Royalist army under King Charles I and Prince Rupert. This victory effectively ended the Royalists' chances of winning the war.

The Naseby Cup stands as a testament to the enduring fascination with this pivotal moment in English history. Its unique design, rare coins, and the comprehensive book exploring its history make ita valuable resourcefor scholars, collectors, and history enthusiasts alike. The Yale University Art Gallery's publication of "The Naseby Cup: Coins and Medals of the English Civil War" ensures that this remarkable artifact and its story will continue to captivate and educate for generations to come.