Friday, 23 September 2016

                                                         What a Racket!

this is an interesting and very historic token. Tennis was an illegal game at one point but has been played in Oxford since the Sixteenth Century. there were a number of courts, often situated at the rear of public houses. 

Thomas Wood working under Jane Hallam’s licence obtained in 1647 a licence ‘to hang out the sign of the Salutation in St. Martin’s parish.’ In 1651 he obtained from Katherine Edwards a lease of a tenement (No. 104, High Street) in St. Mary’s parish, to­gether with a licence to sell wine. This house belonged to Oriel College and behind it and No. 105, High Street, lay a tennis-court (now lecture-rooms of the college)

Obv: Thomas Wood; tennis racquet in centre; Rev: *VINTNER-IN-OXON.1652/W T M.

images by kind permission of Ashmolean Museum 

HCR6521 Farthing (quarter penny) token of the tennis court keeper Thomas Wood, Oxford 1652 © Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford.

information from various sources and 

17th and 18th Century Wine-Bottles of Oxford Taverns - Oxoniensia
by ET LEEDS - ‎

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