This is a new arrival to my Numophylacium Faustinae. I purchased it because it depicts the empress wearing the stephane, an example of which was lacking in my collection on a sestertius of this particular reverse type, that of Laetitia. Isn’t she lovely? Her portrait was crafted by a very talented die-engraver. Faustina II, AD 147-175. Roman orichalcum sestertius, 24.80 g, 32.6 mm, 6 h. Rome, AD 161-164. Obv: FAVSTINA AVGVSTA, draped bust right, wearing stephane. Rev: LAETITIA S C, Laetitia standing left, holding wreath and scepter. Refs: RIC 1653; BMCRE 928; Cohen 150; RCV 5279 var. (bust); MIR 21-6/10b diad. The Latin noun laetitia roughly means "happiness." Specifically, the word connotes a feeling of joy, exultation, rejoicing, gladness, pleasure, or delight. The Laetitia reverse type was large issue, issued under Marcus Aurelius AD 161-164, which I have previously discussed. The issue possibly refers to the birth of M. Annius Verus in AD 162, but this is far from certain. This reverse type was used for the aureus, denarius, sestertius, and middle bronze denominations. Not only may the empress appear bare-headed, wearing a single or double strand of pearls, or a stephane, but Laetitia may appear standing right or left, with mirror-image reverse types. In the sestertius denomination, the bust type depicting the empress wearing one or two strands of pearls is the more commonly encountered in the market; the stephaned variety is quite rare. After a comprehensive internet and literature search, I have compiled the following inventory of known examples: Roma eSale 1, lot 493, 31 August, 2013; same coin sold again in eSale 63, lot 821, 11 July, 2019. British Museum, BMCRE4 928. ANS 1957.172.1756. Thüringen Museum for Pre- and Early History 4956/00. M. Rollin collection, cited by Cohen. This coin, Artemide Kunstauktionen eLive Auction 17, lot 454, 27 March, 2021. If you are aware of any other examples, I’d appreciate you posting a photo or link. Let’s see your coins of Laetitia, Faustina wearing a stephane, or anything you feel is relevant! ~~~ Notes: 1. I have previously discussed the role of the stephane on Roman coins. 2. Szaivert, Wolfgang, Die Münzprägung der Kaiser Marcus Aurelius, Lucius Verus und Commodus (161/192), Moneta Imperii Romani 18. Vienna, 1989, p. 230.