Featured A DIVVS AVGVSTVS issue of Tiberius -- the Ara Providentiae

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Roman Collector, Aug 8, 2020.

  1. Roman Collector

    Roman Collector Supporter! Supporter

    Augustus PROVIDENT S C altar as.jpg
    Divus Augustus, 27 BC - 14 AD.
    Roman Æ as, 9.30 g, 28.4 mm, 7 h.
    Rome, issued under Tiberius, AD 22-30.
    Obv: DIVVS·AVGVSTVS·PATER, head of Augustus, radiate, left.
    Rev: PROVIDENT S C, Altar-enclosure with double paneled door; surmounted by uncertain ornaments.
    Refs: RIC 81; BMCRE 146; Cohen (Augustus) 228; RCV 1789.

    This as posthumously honoring the deified Augustus was one of several such bronze coins issued by Tiberius, each with different reverse types. This one depicts an altar enclosure under which is inscribed PROVIDENT. These coins have been dated by Sutherland using die marks, axes, and stylistic features to an extended period from 22-30 A.D., though he postulates it may have been issued as a decennalia issue in AD 24, celebrating the first ten years of Tiberius' reign.[1]

    This coin type is not rare; in fact, it is among the most common coins found from the age of Tiberius. Grant cites 420 examples from Rome and over 300 from excavations at Vindonissa, and remarks, "Issues with this type greatly exceeded all contemporary aes coinages in bulk."[2] Sutherland, in examining 62 examples, could not find even a single die-match among them.[3]

    Sutherland writes, "the altar, with PROVIDENT(ia), suggests the divine foresight of Augustus in adopting Tiberius."[4] In their discussion of an inscription dating to AD 20, Warner Eck and colleagues note the existence of an altar to Providence, the Ara Providentiae in the Campus Agrippae, cited by the Acts of the Arval Brethren, which was built to celebrate the providence of Augustus in adopting Tiberius and compelling his stepson to adopt Germanicus. The placement of a statue of Germanicus near the altar supports this theory. Eck et al further observe that the altar was not mentioned by Augustus in the Res Gestae and propose that the Ara Providentiae was built, or at least vowed, between the time Augustus completed the Res Gestae in AD 13 and his death in AD 14.[5] Rebecca Edwards believes that this as of Tiberius specifically depicts the Ara Providentiae "as proof that his rule was justified by the choice of Augustus to adopt him in 4 A.D."[6]

    Let's see your Divus Augustus coins!


    1. Sutherland, C. H. V. “Divus Augustus Pater: a study in the aes coinage of Tiberius.” Numismatic Chronicle 6 (1941): 97-116. See pp. 115-116 in particular.

    2. Grant, Michael. “The pattern of official coinage in the early principate.” Essays in Roman coinage presented to Harold Mattingly. R. A. G. Carson, and C. H. V. Sutherland, eds., 96-112. London: Oxford University Press, 1956, p. 108.

    3. Op. cit., p. 111.

    4. Op. cit., p. 116.

    5. Eck, Werner, Antonio Caballos, and Fernando Fernández. Das Senatus consultum de Cn. Pisone patre. Vestigia, Bd. 48. München: Beck, 1996, pp. 200-01.

    6. Edwards, Rebecca M. “Divus Augustus Pater: Tiberius and the Charisma of Augustus.” Indiana University, 2003, p. 154.
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2020
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  3. Limes

    Limes Supporter! Supporter

    Nice coin and write up!

    Here's mine. It actually is one of my earliest purchases in my collection and it's definately one of my favorites:
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  4. cmezner

    cmezner Supporter! Supporter

    Always happy when anything about Augustus comes up :happy:

    This is one of the Divus Augustus - Providentia I have, as you say not rare at all, but sooooo very beautiful:

    Same attribution as OP
    27 mm,10.165 g
    #320-Vs.jpg #320-Rs.jpg
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  5. happy_collector

    happy_collector Well-Known Member

    Here is my Divus Augustus, with an eagle on globe reverse.
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  6. Shea19

    Shea19 Supporter! Supporter

    Great post as usual, RC. Here’s my example:

    Divus Augustus, As, (28mm, 10.8g)
    Struck under Tiberius, circa 31-37 AD. DIVVS AVGVSTVS PATER, radiate head left. Reverse - S-C either side of large altar, PROVIDENT in exergue
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  7. Ancient Aussie

    Ancient Aussie Supporter! Supporter

    Great coin and write up RC. 346.jpg
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  8. Finn235

    Finn235 Well-Known Member

    Nice coin and write up. This is one of those nice coins that is available to just about anyone who wants one. Mine is one of my favorite Imperial bronzes

    Divus Augustus dupondius by Tiberius.jpg

    On the subject of Divus Augustus coinage, here is one of a later and much more rare type, that was my coin for a whole four weeks before passing on to a new forever home

    Augustus funeral sestertius elephant quadriga.jpg
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  9. octavius

    octavius Well-Known Member

    Great write up - very enjoyable.
    here is my DIVVS As of Augustus - along with an As of Tiberius under whose reign both were struck...

    191721.jpg 862407.jpg
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  10. cmezner

    cmezner Supporter! Supporter

    such beautiful obverses - they are really something, my eyes are popping out :happy:
    +VGO.DVCKS and DonnaML like this.
  11. Terence Cheesman

    Terence Cheesman Supporter! Supporter

    Divus Augustus Ae As 22-23 A.D. Obv. Head of Augustus Left radiate. Rv. Altar RIC (Tiberius) 81 11.55 grms 28 mm augustusas4.JPG
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  12. Alegandron

    Alegandron "ΤΩΙ ΚΡΑΤΙΣΤΩΙ..." ΜΕΓΑΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ, June 323 BCE Supporter

    Nice addition and write up, @Roman Collector ...

    RI Augustus DIVUS under Tiberius 22-23 CE Radiate Alter Left
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  13. Herodotus

    Herodotus Well-Known Member

    Divus Augustus. Æ As. Struck under Tiberius. 31-37 AD.
    O: DIVVS AVGVSTVS PATER, radiate head left.
    R: S-C either side of large altar, PROVIDENT in exergue
    RIC 81 (Tiberius)
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  14. Cucumbor

    Cucumbor Dombes collector Supporter

    Excellent write up

    I've always loved this cointype, maybe because I was lucky enough to find a decent one decades ago, in my early coinyears (it would definitely deserve a better picture though)

    Augustus, Posthumous as minted under the reign of Tiberius
    DIVVS AVGVSTVS PATER, Radiate head of Augustus left
    PROVIDENT, Altar, S C in field
    11.02 gr
    Ref : Cohen #228, RCV #1789, RIC I # 81

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  15. Bing

    Bing Illegitimi non carborundum Supporter

  16. bcuda

    bcuda Supporter! Supporter

    Great write up !


    Augustus Æ As.
    Struck under Tiberius. Rome,
    circa AD 22/3-30.
    radiate head left
    Rev: Altar; S-C across fields
    PROVIDENT below. RIC 81
    (Tiberius). 10.81g, 28mm,
    Ex L. Rose Collection.
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  17. Mr.Q

    Mr.Q Well-Known Member

    Well done!
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  18. Edessa

    Edessa Supporter! Supporter

    Roman Egypt, Alexandria. Nero, AD 54-68. Billon Tetradrachm (24mm, 12.90g). Dated RY 13 (AD 66/67). Obv: [NEPΩ K]ΛAY KAIΣ ΣEB ΓEP AY ; Radiate bust of Nero left, wearing Aegis; L-ΙΓ to left. Rev: ΘEOΣ ΣEΒAΣTOΣ; Radiate head of Divus Augustus right. Ref: Milne 251; Emmett 113.

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  19. singig

    singig Well-Known Member

    Interesting write up!
    All five are DIVVS AVGVSTVS PATER ,
    RIC 81[tib] , RIC 82[tib] , RIC 72[tib] and the less common RIC 74[tib]
    avgp-o.JPG avgp-r.JPG
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