JROMA 2019 Top 10

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by JROMA, Dec 13, 2019.

  1. JROMA

    JROMA Active Member

    As everyone seems to be doing one of these, I feel like I might as well join in. I also think this is a pretty good way to archive your previous additions and see how your collection develops! 2019 was pretty aggressive for me, as working with a student’s budget I definitely torched a good portion of my net worth this year. My eBay selling has been a bit of an enabler although additions are going to be few and far between until I get back to work in May haha.

    I’ll start off with some honourable mentions as it was difficult to cut this down to 10, so I got as close as I could.

    Gallienus AE Antoninianus CAES.


    AE Antoninianus 260-268 AD (21mm, 3.99g) Rome mint. IMP CAES GALLIENVS AVG: Head of Gallienus, radiate, right / PAX AETERNA: Pax, draped, standing left, holding olive-branch in right hand and sceptre in left hand. Delta right.

    RIC V 254 var. Delta right instead of left

    Rated R3 in RIC, this was a happy surprise hiding within a sight-unseen group lot, verdigris and all. There are two on acsearch, with another on wildwinds which was listed on Vcoins as well. Other then that handful floating around on-line I could not find many examples of this coin at all. Additionally, all of the pieces on-line had the delta in the left field, where this one has it on the right. I saw a couple of RIC 252, with a different obverse legend having the delta in right field. Interesting to see if there are any similar examples of this piece.

    Da Guan Tong Bao


    Hui Zong, AE Cash 1107-1110 AD, Da Guan Tong Bao, gold script. H# 16.418

    I think this piece represents my jump into Chinese coins just a month or so ago quite well. The Da Guan is known as one of if not the most attractive script from the period. I loved these from the images and in-hand it is definitely special, even at a very small fraction of the price of other pieces on this list. Next year I will probably look to find a nice 10-cash version of this piece.

    Ex. Thomas Ollive Mabbott Tetrobol.


    AR Tetrobol, 480/479-477/476 BCE. (25mm, 2.22g) Macedonian hunter riding horse right; wearing kausia and holding spear / Forepart of lion within incuse square.

    HGC3, 759, Raymond 1953, Group I, 23-33.

    Ex. The Thomas Ollive Mabbott Collection, Hans Shulman New York, June 1969. Lot 360 (Realized $26).

    Another welcome surprise out of a group lot. I got a couple of ex-mabbott collection pieces out of a group-lot this summer, and this is the most attractive from the group. None of them are necessarily amazing coins, but the providence, (and therefore making me buy the catalogue, and seeing the rest of his amazing collection) and the original auction tag from 1969 made it a highlight for me.

    Antiochus III Tet.


    AR Tetradrachm 223-211/0 BCE (26 mm, 16.88 gm). Antioch on the Orontes, Series I. Diademed head of Antiochus III right, with youthful features, hair in bangs over the forehead, dotted border / ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ on right, ΑΝΤΙΟΧΟΥ on left, Apollo, slight drapery on right thigh, seated left on omphalos, testing arrow and resting left hand on grounded bow with grip marked by row of pellets; ΞV monogram and inverted Ω above P in outer left field.

    SC-1041.3, Newell-WSM, 1045.

    This was the first large-scale Greek coin I purchased for my collection, and I was extremely happy with it. The high relief and Hellenistic style is a nice difference from the late-roman coins that comprise the majority of my collection.

    Cappadocian Tet. Ariarathes VII


    AR Tetradrachm, 107/6-104/3 BCE (30 mm, 16.46 g), in the name and with the types of Antiochos VII, Eusebia-Mazaka. Diademed head of Antiochos to right. Rev. BAΣΙΛΕΩΣ ΑΝΤΙΟΧΟΥ ΕΥΕΡΓΕΤΟΥ Athena standing to left, holding Nike, shield and spear; outer left, monogram of Φ over A; inner left field, O; inner right field, Λ; all within laurel wreath tied at the top and bottom.

    HGC 7, 829. HGC 9, 1069. SC 2061.

    This guy went unsold at Nomos Obolos 13, and I had to have it. The darkness on the reverse is a small detractor, although the bust is very nice, and it came with a ticket from the 60’s which I love. This type is interesting too, struck under the Cappadocian King Ariarathes VII Philometer emulating the types of Antiochus VII.

    Now time for the overall list. I’ll go from 10 to 1 in order to build a little suspense ;).

    10. Buo Quan EF.


    Wang Mang, 14-23 AD (26mm, 3.35g) Bu Quan “Spade coin” with horns at top of hole. / Raised rims. H# 9.71

    This is the highest quality Chinese coin I’ve had the opportunity to buy so far, and I am very happy with it. The blue toning is superb and is amazing to hold in hand.

    9. Zeno Solidus


    Zeno AV Solidus 4.21 g Constantinople, second reign, 476-491. DN ZENO - PERP AVC Cuirassed bust facing, wearing diadem and crested helmet, holding shield with his l. hand, shouldering spear with his r. hand. Rev. VICTORI - A AVCCCI / * / CONOB Victoria, wearing long dress, standing facing, head turned l., holding long jewelled cross with her r. hand.

    RIC X 910 Depeyrot II, 262, 108/1

    This coin definitely does not have the most amazing portrait, as old Zeno’s face is basically non-existent, although it is my first Roman gold coin I have added to my collection. Originally, I planned to sell it, as it was more of an impulse buy at the right price compared to something I was looking for. I didn’t notice until I got the coin in hand how detailed the lower half of the bust was, and especially the horseman who graces the shield of the late-roman/byzantine emperors on the solidi.


    8. Macedonian Obol?


    AR Fraction, 498 BCE (11mm, 0.95g) Horse standing right / Quadripartite square

    This piece came in the same group lot as the Mabbott, and sadly was one of the only ones without a previous auction-tag or definitive providence. Based on the other pieces, most likely it was last in New York between 1965 and 1970. The horse on this piece is very life-like, and due to the hole from antiquity, I like to believe that someone else felt very similarly about this piece and wore it at some point. I am struggling on identifying this coin due to the weight, if anyone could help shed some light that would be most appreciated.

    7. Magnentius Chi-Rho AE1


    Magnentius AE Double-Centenionalis 353 AD (27mm, 7.44g) Amiens mint. D N MAGNENTIVS P F AVG, Bareheaded draped and cuirassed bust right / SALVS DD NN AVG ET CAES, Large Chi-Rho, A to left, ω to right; AMB in exergue.

    RIC VIII 34

    Ex. TheRed collection, CNG 366, 888, “Collection of a Texas Wine Doctor”

    I already posted this in the AMCC 2 thread, and I am very happy with it. It gets to join my Julian II Bull in my large-scale late roman bronzes, now all I am missing is a Jovian!
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  3. JROMA

    JROMA Active Member

    6. Vitellius Denarius


    AR Denarius, July-December 69 AD (18.5mm, 3.01g) Rome mint. A VITELLIVS GERMAN IMP TR P, laureate head right / XV VIR SACR FAC, Tripod-lebes surmounted by dolphin right; below, raven perched right.

    RIC 86, RSC 114

    This is one of the more recent additions to my collection and was the first coin of Vitellius to join my collection, beating out a win from AMCC 2 by a couple days. I always want to collect the early imperial pieces, but they are just out of budget at the moment. Might as well wait to collect high quality ones instead of hunting in the bargain bin. However, this piece stood out to me, and the seller offered me a price I couldn’t refuse. I did a little digging, and the same coin appeared in Gorny & Mosch 216, (misattributed). Also, RIC 86 appears to be slightly scarcer than RIC 109 just in terms of coins on acsearch, I do not know how much that materially affects the value of the piece.

    5. Romanus III Histamenon


    Histamenon (23 mm, 4.44 g), Constantinopole. + IҺS XIS RЄX RЄSNANTIҺm Christ Pantokrator seated facing on throne, holding book of Gospels in his left hand and raising his right in blessing. / ΘCЄ bOHΘ RωmAҺω on the left, Romanus standing facing, wearing crown and loros and holding globus cruciger with his left hand; on the right, the Virgin, wearing robes and crowning the emperor with her right hand and holding maphorion in her left; above, MΘ.

    SB 1819.

    This was bought from Leu back in December of last year, although I didn’t receive it until into the new year so I think I can slide it into this list. I was very fortunate, as there was a robbery at the Leu offices on Christmas Eve when my coins were still at the office. The list of stolen coins can be seen here: https://iapn-coins.org/robbery-at-leu-numismatik-ag-reported-december-26-2018/

    4. Divus Antoninus Pius


    Divus Antoninus Pius AR Denarius. Struck under Marcus Aurelius. Rome, AD 162. DIVVS ANTONINVS, bare head right / DIVO PIO, square altar with double doors.

    RIC III (Aurelius) 441; RSC 357.

    This was the first denarius of Antoninus Pius that I bought. I had been looking for a Divo Pio denarius for a while, a few had come up at Roma, and that kind of kickstarted my search. This one popped up on eBay from a good dealer, and I happened to win it at the right price.

    3. Justinian Solidus


    Solidus (20 mm, 4.49 g), Constantinople, 527-538. D N IVSTINIANVS P P AVG Helmeted, diademed and cuirassed bust of Justinian I, facing slightly to right, holding spear and shield. Rev. VICTORIA AVGGGN / CONOB Angel standing facing, holding long cross right, and globus cruciger in left; in right field, star.

    SB 137 DOC 3. MIB 5, Ex. Maggiore Collection.

    Same as the Romanus, this was from Leu Web 6, Ex. Maggiore Collection. Even with the scratch I think it is a great example of the type. There is some flatness around the edges which is unfortunate, however the detail of the Diadem makes up for that in my opinion. (I also love how the head of the spear seems to appear out of nowhere)

    2. Caracalla Tet Laodicea


    BI Tetradrachm, Laodikeia ad Mare, Syria. 13.2g 28.1mm, struck 209-211 AD. AVT KAI ANTΩNEINOC CEB, Laureate draped bust right / ΔHMAΡX EX YΠATOC TO Γ, Eagle standing, head left, wreath in beak, star between legs. Bellinger 64; Prieur 1167-1168

    This was part of a group of Tets that I purchased during the summer. I love this piece because of the portrait, different from other depictions of Caracalla from the time, but of distinct Laodikeia style. The Emperor definitely also takes on the looks of a boxer in this piece.

    1. Maximian Argenteus


    Maximianus AR Argenteus. 294 AD. (19mm, 3.15g) Ticinum mint. MAXIMIA-NVS AVG, Laureate head right / VIRTVS MILITVM Four tetrarchs sacrificing in front of city gate. No mint marks.

    RIC VI 14b, Sear 13098, RSC 622 Var

    This piece stood out to me at a coin show, seeing coins in person always is a benefit to someone who does the vast majority of their buying online. I had a decent collection of Maximian going by this point, an Antoninianus of his being my first ancient coin. This was also my first roman non-denarii silver coin, and therefore was a very special purchase.

    The Argenteus is from the collection of Mr. Laborde, who sold the majority of his collection before moving into Roman gold, selling that collection in a group of sales starting with NAC 91. All of his coins are of an extremely high quality, I think shown here quite well.

    Overall very happy with the additions to my collection this year, looking forward to trying to improve on this list next year!
  4. Bing

    Bing Illegitimi non carborundum Supporter

    There are many coins in your collection I would love to have in mine. There are also a couple of real standouts for me. The Maximianus Argenteus, The Romanus III, and the Antiochus III Tet. Good collecting year for you. Congratulations
    JROMA likes this.
  5. Andres2

    Andres2 Well-Known Member

    Amazing collection on a students budget , congrats.

    Your Macedonian mystery coin is indeed a diobol , here's mine with descriprion:

    P1230518a best.jpg
    zumbly, Curtisimo, octavius and 4 others like this.
  6. thejewk

    thejewk Well-Known Member

    Excellent write ups and lovely varied coin selection. I admire many of them, but I think the Caracalla is my favourite. I love the portrait style and will be looking at coins from that mint in the near future.
    JROMA likes this.
  7. Alegandron

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

    Nice collection, @JROMA . Cool Chinese, and really cool Makedonwn!

    My Thraco tribes were probly FIGHTING with your Makedon Tetrobol at that time:
    THRACO-MAKEDON TRIBES- MYGDONES or KRESTONES 480-470 BCE AR Obol 0.79g 11mm Goat Quadripartite incuse square AMNG III 14

    I have several Chinese, cuz they are pretty cool. And, I have travelled these so many times:
    China Wang Mang 7-23 CE Xin Dyn AE 5 Zhu 23mm Huo Quan H 9.43.jpg
    China Wang Mang 7-23 CE Xin Dyn AE 5 Zhu 23mm Huo Quan H 9.43
  8. JROMA

    JROMA Active Member

    @Bing Thanks!

    @Andres2 Thanks for the help on the attribution, the variation in the weights on this type really tripped me up haha.

    @thejewk Yes the Laodikeia coins are very special. I am going to try to look for a Septimius Severus tet next year, there were some at auction this year and just missed out on a couple.

    @Alegandron Yeah the small coins from the early 5th C are really interesting. The chinese coins were a welcome surprise when I got my first one, they are very different from the other pieces I had, and represent a whole different segment of world history.
    Alegandron likes this.
  9. rrdenarius

    rrdenarius non omnibus dormio Supporter

    Great collection. I like the Romanus III Histamenon best.
    PS - I had to google histamenon:
    Histamenon was the name given to the gold Byzantine solidus when the slightly lighter tetarteron was introduced in the 960s. To distinguish the two, the histamenon was changed in form from the original solidus, becoming wider and thinner, as well as concave in form. Wikipedia
  10. chrsmat71

    chrsmat71 I LIKE TURTLES!

    Those are all pretty darn cool @JROMA , I dig that weird wang mang coin, the Romanus III is killer, and I LOVE #1 and #2!!
  11. Ryro

    Ryro You'll never be lovelier than you are now... Supporter

    WoWiE! Your one and two are in areas I haven't been collecting in recently but am now rethinking my target areas!
    BEAuuuutiful coins!
  12. Roman Collector

    Roman Collector Supporter! Supporter

    What a varied and interesting mix! Hope 2020 is good to you.
  13. Limes

    Limes Supporter! Supporter

    Beautiful coins @JROMA! That Maximian Argenteus is amazing!
  14. TIF

    TIF Well that didn't last long :D Supporter

    Wow, that's a remarkable student budget collection!

    Looks like you had a good year :).
  15. zumbly

    zumbly Ha'ina 'ia mai ana ka puana Supporter

    Excellent stuff! That's a very diverse and interesting selection. The Maximianus is outstanding, and I really like the Vitellius as well.
  16. gogili1977

    gogili1977 Well-Known Member

    Beautiful coins, I like Magnentius, Vitelius and argenteus.
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