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Sheriff of Nottingham ring found by metal detector could go for thousands at auction

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An Ancient Sheriff of Nottingham ring which was discovered by a metal detectorist is expected to reach thousands. The 350-year old gold signet ring displays the coat of arm of the Jenison family and could reach £6000 to £8000 when it is auctioned.

The ring will go under the hammer at Hansons’ Auctioneers Historica sale this Thursday, March 24. The ring has been examined by experts at the British Museum’s Portable Antiquities Scheme. A local metal detector enthusiast uncovered the find in July 2020 on a farmland in Rushcliffe, Nottingham.

Read more: Medieval ring found in historic Sherwood Forest expected to be sold for more than £25,000

Hansons’ consultant valuer Adam Staples said: “The ring has survived in near perfect condition and the front face bears a detailed engraving of the Jenison family arms, two swans separated by a diagonal bend. This would have been pressed into melted wax in order to seal the family crest on important letters and documents.”

He added: “Though the family business had been in apothecaries, local legend has it that the Jenisons gleaned great wealth from valuables left in their safekeeping during the Civil War which were never reclaimed. This theory was seemingly corroborated when a buried hoard of Civil War silver coins was unearthed from the very same field where the ring was found.

The Nottingham-branch of the Jenison family first appeared as aldermen of Newark in 1580. After that each generation served as aldermen, and, after the 1626 charter, as mayors.

Sir Matthew Jenison was believed to be quite the character and he was knighted before serving as High Sheriff of Nottingham from 1683 to 1684. He also acted as a commissioner examining decaying trees in Sherwood Forest before becoming an elected member of parliament for Newark in 1701.

He eventually fell foul of the law before dying in Fleet Prison in 1734.

The Sheriff of Nottingham commented: “It’s such a pleasure to be involved with the sale of this ring. As a boy I wandered through Sherwood Forest, daydreaming of Robin Hood and his legendary adversary.”

“The ring we are selling is related to a later Sheriff as tales of Robin Hood emerged in English folklore as early as the 13th and 14th centuries. Nevertheless, this find still evokes those memories and gives us a glimpse back into Nottinghamshire life during the turbulent times of the 17th century.”

The signet ring, lot 131, will be offered in Hansons Auctioneers’ Historica, Coins and Antiquities Auction on March 24 to 25. It’s not the first ring to be found in Notting ham by members of the public. A 15th century ring was found three years ago at Kirton, not far from the remaining part of the forest and was auctioned at Christies reaching the expected price of £25,0000 to £35,000.

The ring, measured 21mm in length, contained a sapphire on a gold mount with engraved figures depicting Saint Elizabeth of Hungary and the Infant Christ.

Written by: thehitnetwork

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