1125: Right hand and testicles off the mint-men!

The current issue (No. 1232) of Private Eye carries the full text of the punishment meted out to the ‘mint-men’ in 1125 as reported in The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle. It goes like this:

AD 1125. In this year sent the King Henry, before Christmas, from Normandy to England, and bade that all the mint-men that were in England should be mutilated in their limbs; that was, that they should lose each of them the right hand, and their testicles beneath. This was because the man that had a pound could not lay out a penny at a market. And the Bishop Roger of Salisbury sent over all England, and bade them all that they should come to Winchester at Christmas. When they came thither, then they were taken one by one, and deprived each of the right hand and the testicles beneath. All this was done within the twelfth-night. And that was all in perfect justice, because that they had undone all the land with the great quantity of base coin that they all bought.’

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