I received an interesting coin Monday thanks to Ken Dorney.
The auction ended Friday the 13th and arrived Monday. That was a quick trip from California to Texas!
I was not in the market for a second coin from a large issue of coins (Crawford estimates 988 obverse dies). I found over 200 examples of Cr. 342/5b on line before I stopped looking. I have a similar coin that I bought in 2006. It is the second coin on my RR spreadsheet. The artwork is far from the best on RR coins. But..... @Ken Dorney is a good salesman! He mentioned an unpublished control mark: "This type unrecorded with any [reverse] control marks.", and the hook was set.
Roman Republic, Silver Denarius, Rome, C Vibius Cf Pansa, 90 BC, unpublished reverse control mark
Obverse: Laureate head of Apollo right, [control mark?] before, PANSA behind. Crawford says that this coin should have a control mark before Apollo’s chin. I see no signs of a control mark there,...
Hello CT friends. I have slowed down quite a bit on my coin purchases this year which has allowed me the chance to study and learn about some interesting coins in my collection I might not otherwise have spent as much time studying. This awesome coin came to me by way of our coin friend who’s namesake had some serious mother issues (looking at you @Severus Alexander ). I think this coin is fascinating because it was minted by a ruler who did not identify himself on his coins and thus remained a mystery to numismatists for centuries. Also this coin comes from a rare type of ancient civilization that we can study from sources both east and west (I.E. Chinese, Greek, Roman etc.). However, after studying this coin the only thing that I can say about it with certainty is that there is nothing certain to be said about it! More on that below.
Vima Takto, AD 78-110
AE Unit, Unkown mint, struck ca. AD 78-110
I have added several coins of Nikopolis ad Istrum this week. Nikopolis ad Istrum is just west of Markianopolis in the province of Moesia Inferior. For those of you not familiar, let's take a look at the map.
Here is a map with the appropriate area highlighted:
Finally, a little more detail within the province:
If you start at the Black Sea just above Constantinople and head west, you will come across Markianopolis first then Nikopolis directly after. All of this is in what is present day Bulgaria.
The town was founded by Trajan in commemoration of his Victory over the Dacians in 106AD. It issued much in the way of its own coinage and thrived. By 447AD though, the town had been in decline and was sacked by the Huns along with Markianopolis. The coins from the Severan era can be considered representative of the glory days of both towns.
First up is an AE18 of Nikopolis....
Well, Bizarre Love Tetrarchy never made the charts, so you get what you get. Also, there is what could be a triangle involved, but that comes down the post.
I was doing a little wandering outside of my usual areas this last month and found some interesting coins and thought I would share them with you. Like I mentioned before, I do have a thing for collecting LRB's by series/mintmark/officina details. Which is another way of saying, "I like to hoard Late Roman Bronze coins." But whatever. The coins in this post are all from about the same one hundred year period, from the Tetrarchy to Arcadius.
During this period you see some changes in the coinage which I think prompt most people to say, "Great. More LRBs." The portraits of the emperors become stylized so much as to become generic. The content of the coins both in terms of metallic value and design variety becomes very disappointing when compared to the choices in designs and artistic quality of the earlier Empire. With...
Over in the Ancient Type Set thread, @dougsmit boldly predicted that it would be possible to build a "reasonably comprehensive set of ancient coins" with just 100 slots to fill. Since I'm a generalist collector, and I also aim to be comprehensive, this prediction inspired me to try to build the smallest checklist I could live with. Here is a first draft that I cobbled together today. As you can tell from the title, I wasn't quite able to keep it to 100. The total number right now stands at ~186 [edit: now 189], and I would be very interested to hear your comments and suggestions! What crucial coin issuers/times am I missing? Can the list stay at 200 or less?
The list aims to be historically comprehensive, not numismatically comprehensive; and it focuses on political and military history, not cultural or social. It's awfully broad-brush, and there's an inevitable Western...
Goodness gracious, snakes alive, as my grandmother would (almost) say. I’ve picked up three very unusual depictions of serpents this year, all with similar motifs. Cue up the Steve Miller Band and behold the marvelous Snake Cowboy:
EGYPT, Alexandria. Domitian. Regnal year 10, CE 90/91. Æ diobol (25mm, 10.86 g, 12h). AVT KAICAP ΔΟ ΜΙΤ CEB ΓΕΡΜ, laureate head right / Agathodaemon serpent, wearing the skhent crown (emblematic of upper and lower Egypt), on horseback galloping left; L I (date) below. Köln –; Dattari (Savio) –; K&G 24.109; RPC II 2585; SNG Copenhagen 214; Emmett 277.10 (R5).
Ex Giovanni Maria Staffieri Collection. Ex West Coast/Lloyd Beauchaine Collection (Classical Numismatic Group 41, 19 March 1997), lot 1110; Classical Numismatic Review Vol. XVI, No. 1 (January 1991), lot 316; Numismatic Fine Arts Fall Mail...
I wanted to show off a coin purchased in Frank's latest auction and to offer my thoughts about classification of ancient coins. Feel free to post whatever you feel is relevant, of course!
Collectors of modern coins, as you know, put a great deal of emphasis on minor varieties, such as a coin with a small date versus one with a large date or a quarter with Lady Liberty fully clothed verses a quarter where Lady Liberty is experiencing a "wardrobe malfunction." We ancient coin collectors, knowing that each die was hand-engraved, know that no two coins are alike and small variations in design--unless they distinguish one mint from another, for example--rarely mean anything. The concept of variety collecting in ancients is a rather loose one.
But when is a variant not just a variant? In my opinion, when the two "varieties" actually represent two separate issues. As a case in point, I'd like to present a denarius of Faustina Junior I acquired in Frank Robinson Auction 104:...
Hello everyone, and Happy New Year!
Earlier last year, during discussions in the ever popular Toning Premium Thread, I came up with the idea for a Details Discount Thread in which we guessed the discount from retail for details graded coins. As many of you probably saw, we had a decent run, but have been struggling a bit to keep the interest level up.
The leader of the thread, @ddddd , recently proposed declaring @Beefer518 the overall winner and starting a new thread to discuss holder premiums. We all wholeheartedly agreed and the baton was passed to me as the person who first thought up the Details thread. So, along with congratulating @Beefer518 as the Details Discount champion, I am now starting the new year with the Holder Premium Thread. The rules are as follows:
1. Just like the Toning Premium Thread, one coin is posted at a time by the winner of the previous round.
2. Each coin should be in an older...
While a fun exercise, playing "guess what they were thinking" is not likely to be fruitful. Nonetheless, that's what this post is about. This is the coin is question:
Caracalla AD 198-217
Roman AR Denarius 3.37 g; 19.7 mm
Rome mint, AD 211-213
Obv: ANTONINVS PIVS AVG BRIT, laureate head, right
Rev: INDVLG FECVNDAE, Female figure (Indulgentia?), wearing veil and corona muralis, seated left on cerule chair, extending right hand and holding scepter
Refs: RIC 214; BMCRE 73; RCV 6805.
The iconography and inscription on this coin have long puzzled me. Part of the reason is that INDVLG is an abbreviation for indulgentia, which means clemency, lenity, grace, favor. On Roman coin inscriptions, the term typically denotes "either some permission given, some privilege bestowed, or some tribute remitted." The problem, however, is that we don't know how it is declined grammatically because, as an abbreviation, it is missing its...
My first Roman collection was done in 2007-08. It was an "A-to-Z" (Augustus to Zeno) collection, which focused on portrait coins from as many different personalities as I could afford.
My second Roman collection was this "Twelve Caesars" set. I retired this collection in 2013 and have since sold off the coins, but I was proud to say I completed it, which was quite challenging on my modest budget. I stayed under $500/coin here, even for the Julius Caesar lifetime portrait denarius and the Otho (though I did have to stretch a tiny bit above that for the Caligula seen here, which upgraded two prior ones that both succumbed to terminal bronze disease. I've only had two coins with bronze disease ever, and both had be Caligulas. How unlucky is that?)
I think I did OK and managed to put together a fairly respectable collection for the budget. Not everyone agrees...
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