Coal Money

Some more from Highways & Byways of Dorset:

“From this curious place comes the “Kimmeridge coal money.” This misunderstood coinage consists of round plates of “jet” from 1.5 to 2 inches in diameter, which appear to have been treasured at one time as articles of value. These discs are neither money, nor are they of coal. They are of Roman handiwork, are fashioned from the bituminous shale of the bay, and represent the refuse or cores from the lathe. the ancient turners made strange things out of this shale, including great beads, little cups, amulets and rings. the worthless disc that held the work of art in the lathe was thrown aside, to be cherished in the course of years by the unwitting as “Coal money”

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