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This was a medal of Sir Thomas Fairfax, General in Chief of the parliamentary forces in 1645. The auctioneers omitted to state what the metal is; however it seems that it was silver gilt.

This medal had obviously been treasured and was rare in that a Roundhead medal should have been so highly regarded after the Restoration although, in Fairfax’s case this was probably due to his change of heart in 1660, when he “actively exerted himself to forward the Restoration of Charles II”.

We know this because it had been mounted in an attractive enamel filigree mount which can hardly be before 1660. About 1675 is a better guess. This is when the medal probably acquired its gilding. It was estimated at £2,000-3,000, which the medal people considered optimistic. It found someone to continue to treasure it at £5,000 plus 15 per cent premium.