A Scarce Semis

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by David Atherton, Oct 22, 2021.

  1. David Atherton

    David Atherton Flavian Fanatic

    Semisses are probably the rarest imperial denomination struck for Domitian. They do not show up in trade often and when they do are commonly seen in poor condition. I was lucky enough to recently acquire this semis for a fair price and in very good condition.

    Æ Semis, 4.18g
    Rome mint, 81-82 AD
    Obv: IMP DOMITIANVS AVG; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
    Rev: S C in field; Cornucopiae
    RIC 122 (R). BMC 481. BMC 517
    Acquired from NumisCorner, October 2021.

    An undated rare semis from Domitian's first year as Augustus. The early date is presumed based on style and the absence of Germanicus in Domitian's titles. The reverse type is a carry-over from a rare Domitian Caesar issue under Titus. This small issue of undated bronzes, which also includes quadrantes, was likely struck no later than early 82 before the bronze mint was shuttered for a couple of years for the Rome mint's reorganisation.

    Please share your small denomination bronzes!
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2021
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  3. Jay GT4

    Jay GT4 Well-Known Member

    Fantastic reverse
    David Atherton likes this.
  4. Orfew

    Orfew Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus Supporter

    Oh yeah...that is a nice one. The semis is a denomination I have yet to add for Domitian.
    David Atherton likes this.
  5. Roman Collector

    Roman Collector Supporter! Supporter

    I have many quandrantes, but only two semisses in my collection, both from Hadrian. I never pass up an opportunity to show them.

    These two coins are some of the last semisses minted in the Roman empire.

    Hadrian, AD 117-138.
    Roman orichalcum semis, 4.06 g, 18.1 mm, 7 h.
    Rome, AD 121-23.
    Obv: IMP CAESAR TRAIAN HADRIANVS AVG, eagle standing half right, head turned left, wings open but not spread.
    Rev: P M TR P COS III S C, thunderbolt.
    Refs: RIC 625; RIC 2.3, 624; BMC 1279; Cohen 1167; Strack 579; RCV 3704.

    Hadrian, AD 117-138.
    Roman orichalcum semis, 4.12 g, 18.3 mm, 6 h.
    Rome, AD 124-25, possibly for use in Syria.
    Obv: HADRIANVS AVGVSTVS: Bust of Hadrian, laureate, draped and cuirassed, right.
    Rev: COS III S C, lyre.
    Refs: RIC 688; RIC 2.3, 758; BMC 1359-61; Cohen 443; Strack 625; RCV 3701; McAlee 547a.
  6. Andres2

    Andres2 Well-Known Member

    great cornucopia ,David. I think semisses from Hadrian are not so rare, here's mine:

    Hadrianus Aequitas semis 1.jpg
  7. PeteB

    PeteB Well-Known Member

    Anonymous Æ quadrans (14mm; 3.17 gm; 7h). Time of Domitian to Antoninus Pius - ca. 81-161 AD. Obv: Winged petasus. Rev: Caduceus between S-C. RIC II p219, 32; Cohen 36; SM 2928
    Gaius (Caligula). 37-41 AD. Æ Quadrans (18.5mm, 3.31 g, 6h). Rome mint. Struck 40 AD. Obv: C • CAESAR • DIVI • AVG • PRON • AVG •, pileus between S C. Rev: PON • M TR • P • III • P P • COS • TERT • around R • C • C •. RIC I 45; BMCRE 61-3; BN 107-8.
  8. PeteB

    PeteB Well-Known Member

    Claudius. 41-54 AD. Æ Quadrans (16mm, 3.44 gm, 7h). Rome mint. Struck 41 AD. Obv: TI CLAUDIUS CAESAR AVG, Hand left, holding scales; PNR below Rev: PON M TR P COS DES IT around S C. RIC I 85; SM 1864
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