Finally got a coin from my wish list

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by ambr0zie, Mar 12, 2022.

  1. ambr0zie

    ambr0zie Dacian Taraboste

    ... in fact 2 coins.
    Living in a country that once was Dacia, I try to collect as many coins with Dacian themes.
    Last year I managed to get a Trajan Decius DACIA antoninianus
    I also have the matching sestertius
    A nice denarius celebrating Trajan's victory, DACICA inscribed on shield
    and a Column denarius
    ... but coins with Dacian soldiers were missing completely.
    I think these are very popular coins, as I saw them plenty of times in auctions but always failed to win one. Although the conditions were not spectacular, some collectors wanted them badly. Or I simply missed them (a few months ago I was hunting one, being sure the auction is on Sunday. It was on a Saturday so completely missed it). Or there were other coins more appealing after them chronologically in auctions and the budget didn't allow me to bid much and lost them.
    Overall, lots of failures.

    I intend to buy less coins in the future, but Dacian themed denarii were on top of my wish list and I was hoping to get some decent examples.
    It finally happened today, not one, but 2 coins. Not spectacular, but ticking this box was a major goal. And the conditions are satisfying enough for me.


    Trajan AD 98-117. Rome
    Denarius AR
    19 mm, 3,13 g
    IMP TRAIANO AVG GER DAC P M TR P, bust of Trajan, laureate, right (sometimes draped on left shoulder) / COS V P P S P Q R OPTIMO PRINC DAC CAP, Dacian, wearing peaked cap, his hands bound behind him, seated right on a pile of shields and arms
    Date Range: AD 103 - AD 111
    RIC II Trajan 96, RSC 118, BMC 385

    Trajan AD 98-117. Rome
    Denarius AR
    19 mm, 3,02 g
    IMP TRAIANO AVG GER DAC P M TR P COS V P P, bust of Trajan, laureate, right / S P Q R OPTIMO PRINCIPI Dacian, wearing peaked cap, in attitude of mourning, seated right on oval shield; curved sword (falx) below
    Date Range: AD 103 - AD 111
    RIC II Trajan 219, RSC 529, BMC 175

    Having 2 coins I wanted a lot in the same auction could lead to stupid situations (it happened more than once). Especially when the second is more appealing (I like the design with the falx under the soldier). Usually I lose both. I bid on the first, but not very aggressively - the idea is to keep the budget for the second coin, the one I like more. I lose the first one, no worries, I will bid on the second. And I lose that one also because it happened way too many times to have a bidding war.

    This time I won both. To my surprise, the first one was more expensive (but not by much). Prices were a little bigger than the normal price for Trajan denarii in average preservation - but I have seen similar coins going for much more, probably they are very popular, so I am quite happy.

    As Dacian related coins were discussed recently, please post coins that you tried to get for a while, failed repeatedly, but finally managed to win.
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  3. DonnaML

    DonnaML Well-Known Member

    Nice! It's never quite clear to me whether these Dacian depictions are supposed to be captive Dacian soldiers (and therefore male) or the personification of Dacia (and therefore female). It's often difficult to tell. Gender ambiguity is not new!
  4. ambr0zie

    ambr0zie Dacian Taraboste

    I think they are soldiers since they are depicted with weapons. Female Dacia personification should be depicted without (I think)
    panzerman, +VGO.DVCKS and DonnaML like this.
  5. Marsman

    Marsman Well-Known Member

    That’s a nice Dacia collection !
    Gives me the opportunity to show my VIC DAC coin again :)


    Trajanus, sestertius.
    34 mm, 27,36 g.
    Obv. IMP CAES NERVAE TRAIANO AVG GER DAC P M TR P COS V P P: Bust of Trajan, laureate, right with aegis.
    Rev. S P Q R OPTIMO PRINCIPI S C: Victory, naked to waist, standing right, left foot on helmet, holding stylus in right hand and with left hand attaching shield inscribed VIC DAC to palm-tree.
    RIC 528
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2022
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  6. ominus1

    ominus1 Supporter! Supporter

    ..i have him(Trajan) with a Dacian Trophy reverse in the 'Good 5(6)' IMG_0401.JPG IMG_0402.JPG
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  7. DonnaML

    DonnaML Well-Known Member

    So do you think the reverse of the Trajan Decius is the female personification, since the figure is shown holding a "draco" rather than a weapon? Also, keep in mind that Virtus, a female personification, is often depicted with weapons. Never mind Athena!
    zumbly, +VGO.DVCKS and ambr0zie like this.
  8. ominus1

    ominus1 Supporter! Supporter

    ..well, on the top one, it looks to male and the bottom seems to be me anyway :)
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  9. ambr0zie

    ambr0zie Dacian Taraboste

    This is what I think, but I am not an expert in this field.
    On Decius coins Dacia should be a woman (I think what she's wearing is a robe).
    On the Hadrian DACIA bronzes, I think Dacia is also a woman
    (not my coin, would like one but only saw 1 example in a deplorable condition in an auction).
    I don't think the Romans would have been very proud to depict defeated women on coins so this makes me believe that on this series all the reverse characters are men soldiers - captive or mourning.

    @ominus1 - that's a good point with the bottom coin but I think that is because of wear ... looking at a well preserved example I think that is part of the armor
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  10. ominus1

    ominus1 Supporter! Supporter

    that's def. female...on the top one in question, looks like the hands are tied behind the figure so i'd assume its a male...the bottom one has arms free...(and lQQks to have boobs:eek::D)
    Curtis, panzerman and +VGO.DVCKS like this.
  11. DonnaML

    DonnaML Well-Known Member

    Here's my example of the bottom coin. As I said, it's difficult to tell. Whether male or female, though, the Dacian is definitely a scarecrow, with arms the thickness of pipe cleaners!

    Trajan-Dacian in mourning jpg version.jpg
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  12. ominus1

    ominus1 Supporter! Supporter

    wizard of oz scarecrow.jpg 1st thought was...'we're off to see the wizard....><...
  13. Curtis

    Curtis Supporter! Supporter

    Very cool! I've got the matching pair too, it's a classic. Unfortunately I don't have a photo of the Sestertius (I need to get on that), but here is my recent upgraded DACIA AR Antoninianus, bought last year from Harlan Berk's 215th sale, lot 210 (possibly ex Behnen Collection of Decius?) --

    Trajan Decius DACIA AR Antoninianus HJB 215 Christian Blom, 3 Feb 1964.jpg

    I think it's from “The Bill Behnen Collection of Trajan Decius” but I've been unable to confirm. He had a nice, narrowly-focused collection on Decius and family, sold by Berk (mainly at Gemini XIII & XIV, and HJB 201 & 202). This coin was listed in HJB 215 as "Acquired from Christian Blom, 3 February 1964."...

    But acquired by whom? Behnen purchased many of his "Decii" from Christian Blom in the 1960s, so I suspect his name was simply inadvertently left off. (I've actually found that on a few others of his.)

    EDIT: Oh, almost forgot my DACCAP / Dacian captives! The captive at the base of a trophy was an often used type by then, but I think Trajan may have introduced the "sitting on a pile of arms" type, and may have been the only one to depict a lone, standing captive with hands bound (?) in front (hard to tell on this one, but sometimes it appears he has shackles on his wrists):

    Trajan Dacian Captive Seated Trophy AR Denarius Ex-Jesus Vico (photo) e-12 121.jpg Trajan Dacian Captive AR Denarius Ex-Jesus Vico (photo) e-12 113.jpg Trajan Dacia Denarius.png
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2022
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  14. ambr0zie

    ambr0zie Dacian Taraboste

    Interesting, your captive types are exactly the ones I don't have.
    From this series, I like the most the ones with the falx under the soldier (or woman, whatever you prefer :p), the one with he character siting left on the pile of arms and the one sitting right (like the one I got).
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2022
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  15. zumbly

    zumbly Ha'ina 'ia mai ana ka puana Supporter

    Nice set, @ambr0zie. Here's a more unusual depiction of Dacia holding a regular standard rather than a draco. Also with the less common TRA DEC obverse legend.

    Trajan Decius - Dacia Rare Standard.jpg
    AR Antoninianus. 4.26g, 22.8mm. Rome mint, AD 251. RIC 36a (rare); Cohen 25. O: IMP CAE TRA DEC AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right. R: DACIA, Dacia standing left holding military standard.
    Ex Behnen Collection (purchased from Jonathan Kern, 2 Nov 2001)
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  16. Alegandron

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


    RI Trajan AR Denarius 98-117 CE Trophy over Dacian Captive RIC II 222
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  17. ambr0zie

    ambr0zie Dacian Taraboste

    Nice ones all -but doesn't anybody have some coins that were on the wish list for months, and lost repeatedly?
    For me this is the most annoying situation - missing common coins that appear frequently and for some reason the prices go too high.
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  18. Roman Collector

    Roman Collector Supporter! Supporter

    This one isn't exactly common, but -- if you'll pardon the litotes -- it's not uncommon, either. Every time I try to bid on one of these, I get outbid.

    Faustina Sr AETERNITAS star denarius veiled bust Gemini.jpg
  19. panzerman

    panzerman Well-Known Member

    Happens to me a lot lately....:(
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  20. Ryro

    Ryro Trying to remove supporter status Supporter

    Great job bringing the rage:rage: T- rage:D
    Here's some of mine.
    First things last, Trajan D:
    Screenshot_20201217-125226_PicCollage-removebg-preview.png 2025571_1625039758.l-removebg-preview.png 2136730_1630246928.l-removebg-preview.png Screenshot_20210109-114411_PicCollage-removebg-preview.png
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  21. Curtis

    Curtis Supporter! Supporter

    Here's one that qualifies in some ways.

    I've been interested in the Archer Huntington (1870-1955) Collection for the tremendous backstory. I need to check if a full post on Huntington has been done yet, but below are some of my summary notes on the story, which includes:

    legal fighting between two neighboring Manhattan museums: the Hispanic Society of America (who technically owned the collection & wanted to sell) and the American Numismatic Society (who had been in possession of ~39,000 coins since the 1940s & wanted to keep them);

    the coins being sold in a famous single-lot, secret-buyer sale by Sotheby's for 10s of millions of GBP (to a consortium including Jose Vico, it appears);

    about 26,500 of the original 39,000 coins being anonymously donated back to the ANS: 10,000 were quickly returned by an anonymous donor (incl. 3,000 Roman AR and AE), later 7,500 more
    (including the Brutus Eid Mar AR Denarius);

    then the ANS selling many the duplicates anyway (fair play, really)!

    I'd already gotten a couple coins from the Huntington Collection, a pretty neat large Augustus/Caligula AE Dupondius and an otherwise forgettable quadrans:
    Divus Augustus Dupondius Gaius.jpg Augustus Quadrans Ex Archer Huntington ANS.jpg

    The Dupondius was an impressive enough exemplar of the Huntingtion Collection, but when I saw this one up for auction last year I really wanted something that would be special even apart from the history of ownership.

    I bid on this Vespasian denarius with fantastic tone at CNG 487 (in 2021) and went a little beyond my budget and STILL LOST (either first or second underbidder):
    Vespasian Denarius Vesta RSC 561 Ex Huntington Collection ANS HSA CNG 487.jpg

    Then it appeared again a few weeks ago at CNG auction 509. The toning looked a bit lighter. Had it been lightly stripped (justifying a lower price) or was it lighting? Still beautiful, so I bid again, this time winning at ~half of my max bid the first time!
    Vespasian Denarius Vesta RSC 561 Ex Huntington Collection ANS HSA CNG 509.jpg

    Roman Imperial Coinage. Vespasian (Emperor, 69-79 CE) AR Denarius (17mm, 3.50 g, 6h). Rome mint, struck July-December 71.
    Obv: IMP CAES VESP AVG P M. Laureate head right.
    Rev: TRI POT. Vesta seated left, draped, holding simpulum.
    Ref: RIC II.1 46; RSC / Cohen 561.

    Prov: Archer M. Huntington (1870-1955) Collection; loaned, then bequeathed to Hispanic Society of America (HSA 1001.1.22362); late 1940s - c. 2012, housed at the American Numismatic Society (same accession number); 8 March 2012, sold at Sotheby's sealed-bid sale of all 37,895 Huntington coins; acq. by consortium, incl. Jose Vico; May 2012 - summer 2013, returned to ANS among 26,500 other Huntington coins; 17 May 2017, consigned by ANS to CNG e-Auction 397; Lampasas Collection; 10 March 2021, consigned to CNG e-Auction 487; Charles Chamberlain Collection; 9 February 2022, consigned to CNG e-Auction 509; acq. by Jackson - Jacobs Family.

    Question: Does anyone happen to know Charles Chamberlain (coll. recently sold at CNG)? There's a Charles Chamberlain who was Classics Prof. at University of Arizona... I wonder if this was his collection?

    Honestly, in hand, I think it may have simply been an issue of lighting, but it's hard to say for certain.

    Here is my Coin-in-Hand video highlighting the lovely portrait of Vespasian and the rich toning:

    It actually looks closest to a third photo from CNG 397 (in 2017):
    Vespasian Denarius Vesta RSC 561 Ex Huntington Collection ANS HSA CNG 397.jpg

    With the market going the way it is lately, I've been seeing lots of coins auctioned once and then reappearing again for sale only months later. So getting a second bite at the apple has become much more common! (I probably have some others like that, but this is surely my favorite such example.)
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2022
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