An Rare and Interesting Antoninianus of Hostilian

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Harry G, Sep 14, 2021.

  1. Harry G

    Harry G Well-Known Member

    Hi all!

    I just picked up this coin on eBay. Strangely, it was described as being a Probus antoninianus, rather than Hostilian (which is probably why it was so cheap).

    hostilian pietas avgg.png
    (Sorry for poor quality photos)

    The coin shows Hostilian as Augustus, which was a title given by Trebonianus Gallus to Hostilian after the deaths of Hostilian's father and brother, Trajan Decius and Herennius Etruscus.

    Coins of Hostilian giving him the title of Augustus are much rarer than coins giving him the title of Caesar. Most of the coins I can find of Hostilian as Augustus are minted from Antioch, while mine is from Rome mint.

    It also has the unusually short obverse legend IMP C MES QVINTVS AVG - Radiate, draped, cuirassed bust right. The reverse is PIETAS AVGG - Mercury standing left holding purse and caduceus (RIC 188)

    The only other example of this coin that I could find claimed that theirs was the fourth known example, making mine the fifth.

    Show me some coins of Hostilian that you've got :)
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  3. shanxi

    shanxi Well-Known Member

    Interesting coin.

    I'm still missing a Hostilian as Augustus. Mine is a Caesar.

    Antoninianus (AD 251)
    Obv.: C VAL HOS MES QVINTVS N C, radiate and draped bust facing right
    Rev.: MARS PROPVG, Mars advancing right, holding spear and shield
    Ag, 2.86g, 25x20mm
    Ref.: RIC 176a

    and a provincial:

    Syria, Antiochia
    Billon tetradrachm
    Obv.: Γ OYAΛ OCTIΛIAN ME KYINTOC KECAB, bareheaded and draped bust right, S below
    Rev.: ΔΗΜΑΡΧ ΕΞΟΥCIAC, eagle standing right on palm branch, holding wreath in beak, SC below
    Billon, 13.16g, 26.1x28.1mm
    Ref.: Prieur 651

  4. ancient coin hunter

    ancient coin hunter 3rd Century Usurper

    Heck, I just realized I don't have a Hostilian coin. Gotta remedy that.
    ominus1, shanxi and Harry G like this.
  5. Mat

    Mat Ancient Coincoholic

    Great catch and addition.

    Hostilian (250 - 251 A.D.)
    AR Antoninianus
    O: C VALENS HOSTIL MES QVINTVS N C Bust radiate, draped right.
    R: PRINCIPI IVV - ENTVTIS Hostilian standing l. holding standard and spear.
    Rome Mint
    RIC-181d (S), C-34 (4 Fr.)

    Ex. Jonathan Kern, ANA Show, 19 March 1998.
    Ex. Harlan J Berk Buy or Bid Sale, #213, Lot 312
    Bing, Harry G, PeteB and 5 others like this.
  6. Finn235

    Finn235 Well-Known Member

    Very nice!

    I added this Antiochene Hostilian as Augustus a few years back
    Hostilian augustus romae aeternae.jpg

    And just this year finally upgraded my ratty Hostilian as Caesar
    Hostilian Caesar MARTI PROPVGNATORI.jpg

    Looking more regularly, I feel like the coins of Hostilian as Augustus aren't as rare as I originally thought (and I've heard estimates of his reign as anywhere from 1 - 6 months) although curiously coins of Volusian as his Caesar certainly are!
    Bing, Harry G, PeteB and 5 others like this.
  7. ominus1

    ominus1 Supporter! Supporter

    Hostian Moseia Vim. bronze.jpg ..kool! that seems to be a good way to get an item for less ..the last coin i got of him(i've 2 provincials) just last week or so was bought listed(and bought as) as an Aemillian.....a surprise, but not a wholly bad one :)..i'll post a pic when i'm able..:)
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2021
  8. Roman Collector

    Roman Collector Supporter! Supporter

    What a find, @Harry G!

    I only have him as Caesar.

    [​IMG] Hostilian as Caesar, AD 250-251.
    Roman AR antoninianus, 4.32 g, 20.5 mm, 5 h.
    Rome mint, 5th officina. 5th emission, early AD 251.
    Obv: C VALENS HOSTIL MES QVINTVS N C, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind.
    Rev: PRINCIPI IVVENTVTIS, Hostilian standing slightly left, holding signum and reversed spear.
    RIC 181d; RSC 34; RCV 9561; Hunter 4.
    Bing, Harry G, PeteB and 4 others like this.
  9. DonnaML

    DonnaML Well-Known Member

    Congratulations on a great acquisition! Like many others, I have only a Hostilian as Caesar, namely the rather common Mars the Defender type -- the same variety as @Finn235's, I believe, with PROPVGNATORI spelled out in its entirety rather than abbreviated as PROPVG:

    Hostilian Caesar (son of Trajan Decius), AR Antoninianus, 251 AD, Rome Mint. Obv. Radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, C VALENS HOSTIL MES QVINTVS N C / Rev. Mars running right, holding spear in right hand and shield in left, MARTI PROPVGNATORI (Mars the Defender). RIC IV-3 177b, RSC IV 15, Sear RCV III 9556 (ill.). 22 mm., 3.65 g.

    Hostilian - Mars COMBINED.jpg
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  10. gsimonel

    gsimonel Well-Known Member

    Congratulations--scarce, interesting coin in very nice condition. The next time everyone starts dumping on eBay again you should post that coin and then listen for the sound of everyone munching on their own words.

    It's surprising that HOST does not appear anywhere in the obverse inscription. That's probably why the seller didn't recognize the emperor.

    Alas, my only Hostilian is a modest provincial from Viminacium:
    Provincial Bronze (AE26)
    Moesia Superior, Viminacium
    Rev: P M S COL VIM - Moesia, standing between bull and lion
    AN XII in exergue
    Moushmov 55
    25x27mm, 12.2g.
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