At my request Ken Peters sent me a copy of his 2008 book, Counterfeit Coins of England and the United Kingdom: The Bibliography and Individual Counterfeits' Record.
Any bibliography is fair game for The E-Sylum, and specialized bibliographies are especially welcome. General bibliographies by their very nature are rather broad but shallow; in a specialized bibliography an author can "go deep", creating a comprehensive view of the field.
While I'm not versed in the literature of English counterfeits, it appears that Ken Peters has succeeded in this task. The book is the first comprehensive source book on the topic, "from the earliest, including those coming in from the continent, c. 150 B.C, to the current one pound fakes."
The 176-page reference is organized chronologically, with additional chapters on Significant Forgers, Internet Browsing, and Book Hunting. Also included are a Glossary, Index, Authors' Index and list of Abbreviations.
A good bibliography doesn't stop with just books and catalogs - it includes significant individual journal articles. Peters' bibliography includes these in a big way, drawing from such venerable journals as Seaby's Coin and Medal Bulletin, Spink's Numismatic Circular, Numismatic Chronicle and Gentleman's Magazine, as well as many lesser-known publications.
A great bibliography goes beyond its primary field, and I give Peters' book high marks in this regard, as well. There are great many entries for articles and papers published in archeological journals, such as the Birmingham Archeological Society, and Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle. U.S. numismatists will also find entries from many American publications, such as The ANA's Numismatist, and ANS' Museum Notes and The Colonial Newsletter.
The font is small but quite readable. Although upwards of thirty-some entries are found on each page, titles and key phrases are highlighted in bold or boxed. Many pages include images of book or journal covers as well as coins to break up the visual monotony of text. Most pages are black and white, but there is a center section of four color plates titled "Colourful Counterfeits".
It's a browser's delight as well as a handy deskside companion. The bibliography lists many interesting-sounding books I've not come across before, such as "The Coiners of Cragg Vale", a tale of a "notorious 'bully-boy' gang of clippers and coiners, particularly of Portuguese moidores."
The book costs £25 plus £2.50 p&p. (£4 to Europe, £7 to USA, £8 to the rest of the world). Send payment to ENVOY PUBLICITY, 8 Kings Road, Biggin Hill, Kent, TN16 3XU, England. For more information, contact Ken Peters at
Also, Peters just published Counterfeit Coins of Celtic Britain: The Story, Bibliography and Individual Counterfeits' Record. The book is in the same format as the Bibliography.
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