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17th-Century Farthing Trade Tokens

The ancient borough of Southwark, although it does not possess the distinction of the name of a county, deserves in our opinion the honour of a separate division of this work.

In area it is nearly equal to the City of London, containing as it does 590 acres, while but 600 acres is the extent of the City.

In political life it has had its own separate continuous existence, and its government has been separate and distinct from that of the City, although attached to it.

Southwark forms by itself the great ward of Bridge Without, and has its own High Bailiff, Courts and Hall. Forming also part of Surrey, it can be considered to have less to do with Surrey even than with London, and its position demands for it the separate and special consideration its interesting history deserves. We have not, therefore, attached the pages containing its tokens to those of Surrey, preferring to give them separate consideration.

Very many of the Southwark tokens bear the name SOVTHWARK alone upon them, and it is not easy to identify the majority of these with the streets or houses of their issue. With regard to our notes, our thanks are very particularly due to the especial courtesy of the authors of two important works on Southwark. The first, Dr. Rendle's work on "Old Southwark and its People," has been constantly referred to by us, and a second work by the same author, in conjunction with Mr. Philip Norman, has been laid under still heavier contribution. Without the latter work ("The Inns of Old Southwark, and their Associations" {Longmans, 1888}), our task would have been laborious and difficult. From the book Mr. Norman generously permitted us constantly to quote, and by him were we permitted to obtain electros of the woodcuts used to illustrate the tokens struck at the inns mentioned by him. These woodcuts of tokens now appear to brighten our pages(?), and our thanks are most heartily rendered to Mr. Norman for their use and for his constant and patient assistance of our work.

The great feature of the Southwark tokens is the number that were issued from inns, and the inns of Southwark were the most interesting erections(?) in the Borough. "Southwark was," as Dr. Rendle states, 'the chief thoroughfare to and from London from the southern counties and by the coast for the busiest part of the continent--a place for [?] of passage,' 'for great receipt of people and trade from diverse shires of the realm,' and so necessarily occupied by inns in number out of all proportion to ordinary shops and dwellings.'

In treasting of the tokens, we are enabled to give many notes respecting these old inns, which we gather from Messrs. Rendle and Norman's works already referred to. Stow, Evelyn, and Pepys have been also laid under contribution, while Wilson's "Antiquities of Dissenting Chapels," Larwood's "History of Signs," Besse's "Sufferings of the Quakers," and very many other Nonconformist works, have each yielded their quota of interesting information.

We believe these notes will be found to well repay perusal, and to contain many a scrap of history both fresh and novel to the ordinary student.

We must not omit to mention that Mr. Norman has very kindly read the proofs of this portion of the book, and has corrected many of the entries by the light of later investigation, adding also some additional items of interest, for which we would tender him our very sincere thanks; and we are sure that our readers will derive much benefit from his generious aid.

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