No, no I’m obviously not talking about the anatomic genital ligament of the human body...Rather, I’m referring to a specific type of iconography found on many roman coins : the rudder.
2000 years ago, ships were steered by a rudder looking like a large steering oar that was pivoted or even held by hand over one side of the boat. Therefore, a rudder depicted on a coin will resemble a large oar or paddle with a reinforcing rib down its central point.
Rudder of a Roman ship
Many deities are depicted with a gubernaculum ; Tritons and Venus, the greek goddess Tyche too, but the winner is certainly Fortuna ( according to Wikipedia : « Fortuna is depicted on around 1000 different Roman coins usually holding a gubernaculum. »)...
This will be a let down compared to all those wonderful coins from the 2019 "best of's" everybody is posting. But I believe us bottom-feeders should throw out some junk now and again to provide contrast to the beauties.
So I stopped by my local dealer on Black Friday. He doesn't like to mess around with low-grade stuff, so his junk bins can be interesting. He handed me the $4 bin and said "I threw some ancients in there." First thing I saw was a very yellow, decaying plastic flip with "Carausius" written on it. And then a Nerva. I got very excited at that point. The rest is a blur - I was in a feeding frenzy.
Well, now that I've calmed down, I'd have to admit that they aren't pretty, but several of them were "firsts" for me (first Carausius, first Nerva, first Berytus, first Jewish Revolt). And the price was right and it took me many hours of fun (mostly) to attribute them.
I'm guessing on the Carausius - I couldn't believe how...
I recently won two small silver coins from the famous East Harptree Hoard, see photos below. The Harptree Hoard was found in 1887 in a small village about 16 miles southwest of Bath, England. The hoard consisted of 1,496 silver coins, 5 silver ingots, and a ring set with a carnelian intaglio of Mars, all stored in a pewter or lead jar about 6 inches in diameter, and buried about 6 inches underground. The coins were all silver miliarense or siliqua dating from the 4th century CE, and issued under 10 different emperors from Constantine I to Gratian. Only 1 example was found from Constantine I, Decentius, and Magnus Maximus, while coins from Julian II numbered 718, coins from Constantius II numbered 340, and coins from Valens numbered 199. The coins were made from 11 different mints mostly located in Gaul. The British Museum took 25 of the best coins, and about 250 coins along with the storage jar were placed on display at the local church where they were later stolen and never...
I have been pursuing a complete set of Ant-nose coins for several years now, which is a very difficult task as some types are known only in the dozens or even single digits and show up sporadically at best. For those who don’t know, “Ant-Nose” coins are so named because the two most common types resemble a face with a giant nose (top left) and an ant (second row, second from right). Ironically, the inscriptions of the most common coins have not been deciphered yet, though I am currently working on deciphering them (and I believe I have a very good idea). Most of the rarer specimens are clear as to what their inscriptions mean.
They are identified, in order of left-to-right, top-to-bottom:
1. “Nose” coin, normal size
2. “Nose” coin, large size (rare)
3. “Nose” coin, small size
4. “Nose” coin with a single bar over the inscription
5. “Nose” coin with two bars over the inscription (scarce)
6. “Nose” coin with a bar dividing the inscription below the “eyes” (very rare)
Green Bay, Wisconsin (Brown County), U.S.A. Obverse: Official Souvenir / Wisconsin / Tercentennial / Green Bay / 1934. Reverse: Thumbnail 300th Anniversary of the coming of the first white man / (Men in Canoe) / Jean Nicolet in ribbon / 1634.
I was born 30 miles from Green Bay in a small town called Kaukauna. My Grandfather and Father both worked at the Paper Mill on the Fox River. That’s why I write this story.
Wisconsin 1934 centennial medal:
1934 Green Bay, Wis., Wisconsin Tercentennial, Jean Nicolet, Bronze 37mm Unc. A bronze medal commemorating the 300th anniversary of the coming of the first white man to Green Bay, Wisconsin, 1634 - 1934.
In 1634 Jean Nicolet crossed Lake Michigan and landed at Red-Banks (near Green Bay), thus becoming the first white man to explore Wisconsin. (Found in Bloomington, IL). The tercentennial (300th anniversary) of Nicolet's landing at Green Bay was celebrated in 1934. ....
As some of you know, I am currently in college, but I graduate in just a few days. I have one final left, but I will literally pass the class even if I don’t take the final, so I know I will be graduating. I will be graduating summa cum laude from Georgia Tech with a degree in Aerospace Engineering, which in itself is no easy feat. On top of it all, I will be graduating with no student debt and a job lined up!
I will be starting my job as a Flight Test Engineer for a DoD contractor in Huntsville, AL in January, which I am extremely excited about. What it basically entails is studying the system that will be tested, planning the flight test, preparing against safety concerns to mitigate them, executing the flight test while monitoring systems in real time (often on board the aircraft), and then post-processing the data to be used in a certification/airworthiness report.
So this coin is a gift to myself, purchased with money made from coin dealing this summer. I decided I wanted...
After the first Social War (91-88 BC), in which Lucius Cornelius Sulla distinguished himself as a general especially in his defeat of the Samnites. He was elected consul in 88 BC with Quintus Pompeius Rufus. In the same year, his partnership with Pompeius was cemented with the marriage of Cornelia, the daughter of Sulla and his first wife Julia, and Q. Pompeius Rufus, the son of the co-consul.
Sulla, 50 years old, was married to his third wife, Cloelia, whom he pushed aside on grounds of sterility so that he could marry his fourth wife, Metella, establishing a valuable linkage with the powerful Metelli family. And another prized assignment went to Sulla in the same year, that of suppressing the revolt of Mithradates VI of Pontus. However, political maneuvers, led by Caius Marius and Publius Sulpicius Rufus, switched the assignment to Marius. Marius agreed to support Sulpicius’ legislative agenda and in exchange Marius would get command of the...
I was in Orlando last week and not on my desktop computer. I saw a string where collectors were talking about very large fins in a coin or token. I have tried without success to relocate that string, so I am opening a new thread to post this.
A fin, or wire rim, is a ridge of metal that is on a coin or token as a result of an improper metal flow. The medal gets between the die and the collar which results in an extended piece of metal above the normal rim of the piece.
This Lincoln Civil War token has the highest fin that I have ever seen. This is a rare variety. This was a “vanity piece” for a 19th century collector. It has gold filled surfaces, and was struck quite sharply, which probably accounts for the high fin.
The Fuld variety numbers for this patriotic token are 129/349. It is listed in DeWitt/Sullivan as AL 1864-77. It is rated as an R-9 with a surviving population of 10 pieces or...
As some may have noted, I'm a fan of proto money... especially Roman types! It has always been of great interest how the ancients bought and sold things as money evolved
And also how some may have tried to save money...
Here's my Aes rude:
In Italy, as with other nations, early trade used a system of barter. Aes rude(Latin: "rough bronze"), used perhaps as early as the early 8th century B.C., was the earliest metal proto-currency in central Italy. In the 5th century B.C., bronze replaced cattle as the primary measure of value in trade. Aes rude are rough lumpy bronze ingots with no marks or design, some are flat and oblong, others are square, while many are irregular and shapeless.
The metal is mostly copper with roughly 5% tin. Weight varies considerably with some exceeding twelve pounds and others under an ounce. Many smaller examples are fragments of broken larger specimens. A...
"Well, then, I will not govern you either, if he has become in your eyes base and hostile and a public foe. For in that case you will, of course, soon annul all his acts, of which my adoption was one."
Cassius Dio attributes these words to the mouth of Antoninus Pius on the senate's refusal to deify his adoptive father, Hadrian. According to Dio and the Historia Augusta, Hadrian had been responsible for the 'illegal' deaths of a number of senators, and at the time of his death there were other senators waiting to be executed. Antoninus pardoned these men, claiming that Hadrian was already resolved to do the same before his passing.
Compared to Hadrian's frosty and distant relationship with the senate, being a man who extensively toured his empire and invested heavily in works across many of the provinces, Antoninus spent almost his entire reign in close proximity to Rome and supposedly lived as humble a life as is possible given his situation.
He initially refused to be hailed...
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