HUNDREDS of old English pennies, gold and silver amulets and a pair of tiny bronze scales are just some of the fascinating objects currently on display at the London Jewish Cultural Centre in North End Road.

Kings, Crusaders and Jews, which opened earlier this month, features a collection of rare medieval Jewish artefacts.

Curator Lenny Wolfe, a Jerusalem-based specialist in Jewish and Semitic antiquities, says: “It’s a difficult period to come to grips with, because there are so few objects that survive, which illustrate an accurate picture of medieval Jewry. Hopefully this exhibition will go some way towards making this period more accessible to the general public.”

One section of the exhibition relates to the restricted professions that Jews were allowed to engage in during the middle ages, which included money lending and coin striking.

But there are also a number of objects showing how Jewish communities were under threat of persecution. One notable item is a pair of small bronze scales which were used to determine if a coin had been illegally “clipped”, or shaved.

There is also a collection of English pennies dating back to the early 1270s, found in Colchester on land once owned by the Jewish community.

It is thought the money was hidden for safe-keeping shortly before the expulsion of the Jews in 1290.

The exhibition also looks at the Jewish community across the world.

On display are terracotta figurines from China, including one with a pointed hat and a Semitic nose, which highlights the large presence of Jewish merchants throughout the Chinese Empire.

Kings, Crusaders and Jews runs until Thursday, June 18, at the London Jewish Cultural Centre, Ivy House, North End Road. Admission free. Details: 020 8457 5019 or