New(ish) Collector

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Luke B, Aug 14, 2019.

  1. Luke B

    Luke B Active Member

    Hi everyone!

    Recently I have been wanting to expand my small coin collection. While most of my collection is made up of decimal and pre-decimal coins of my country (Australia), I find myself much more drawn to ancient Roman coinage. So far I have a few Roman coins (3rd-4th century CE mostly) and am excited to acquire more.

    Here is a coin I purchased last year and one of my favourites, an antoninianus of the emperor Victorinus with Pax on the reverse. Peace is something that the 3rd century is not known for, unfortunately so for the common people and the many short-lived emperors.
    Victorinus Coin.jpg
    Looking forward to engaging with this community more!
    Limes, Cucumbor, Finn235 and 28 others like this.
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  3. Roman Collector

    Roman Collector Supporter! Supporter

    Welcome! That coin has a nice portrait of Victorinus and an unusually well-struck reverse. Many of his coins were struck with worn reverse dies, such as my humble example of your coin type:

    Victorinus PAX antoninianus.jpg
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2019
  4. gsimonel

    gsimonel Supporter! Supporter

    Very nice coin, Luke B. Glad that you have discovered ancients.
    Despite the chaos and constant warfare of the 3rd century--or perhaps because of it--Pax makes frequent appearances on coins from that era. I think it would be fun to put together a collection of Pax coinage.
    philologus_1 and Luke B like this.
  5. Luke B

    Luke B Active Member


    Yes, I have noticed many coins of the so called "Gallic Usurpers" to be more worn than usual. Perhaps a result of a lower quality control at the mints perhaps? I would imagine they had more pressing concerns. Yours is a nice example with the obverse legend almost completely intact!
    Marsyas Mike likes this.
  6. Luke B

    Luke B Active Member

    Pax is definitely a common theme on the coins from this period. A Carausius Pax coin is on my want list haha. Definitely more wishful thinking on Carausius' part than an advertisement of actual peace in my opinion.
  7. cpm9ball

    cpm9ball CANNOT RE-MEMBER

    Welcome to the neighborhood @Luke B !

    I don't collect "ancients" so I figured I'd better say "welcome" now because we probably won't talk too often later on.

    Luke B and Ima Dragon like this.
  8. gsimonel

    gsimonel Supporter! Supporter

    I just happen to have one (not for sale) in my personal collection. Kind of beat up, but it was in my limited price range:
    Billon Antoninianus
    London mint
    Rev: PAX AVG - Pax, standing left, holding olive branch and vertical scepter
    S in left field; P in right
    RIC 475
    23mm, 4.3g.
  9. happy_collector

    happy_collector Well-Known Member

    Welcome to CT. Ancient coins are really fun to collect.
  10. Victor_Clark

    Victor_Clark standing on the shoulders of giants Dealer

    You should also put examples of the PAX coins that Carausius issued for Diocletian and Maximianus on your want list...notice that the reverse legend ends in AVGGG.


  11. furryfrog02

    furryfrog02 Well-Known Member

    Welcome. That's a great looking Victorinus!
    I've only got one in my collection and its not nearly as nice as yours. I like the reverse though.
    Victorinus AE Antoninianus 268-270AD.jpg
  12. Ima Dragon

    Ima Dragon Year of the Dragon

    Welcome to CT .
  13. cpm9ball

    cpm9ball CANNOT RE-MEMBER

    How can you guys decipher all that stuff? I'd go nuts!

    Kentucky and Ima Dragon like this.
  14. Denarius

    Denarius New Member

    Nice coin! Here is a similar one I have:

    s-l500b.jpg s-l500.jpg
  15. ancient coin hunter

    ancient coin hunter Basileus Megalos

  16. furryfrog02

    furryfrog02 Well-Known Member

    I thought you were already nuts.... :p
    It was pretty daunting for me at first too. But once you get a hang of most of the legends on the coins as well as the rulers, it gets pretty easy. The detective work is half the fun :)
  17. ancient coin hunter

    ancient coin hunter Basileus Megalos

    You'll find that obverses and reverses are somewhat formulaic over time, which makes coins easier to attribute as you get more experience. You can check out the site which is a large catalog of roman coin types by ruler listing most of the obverse and reverses struck by each emperor.
    Ima Dragon and furryfrog02 like this.
  18. dougsmit

    dougsmit Member Supporter

    I have two suggestions. First is to learn the difference between 'worn' and 'poorly struck' coins. Your coin has very little wear with good detail separation on the high points. It shows an uneven strike with weakness on the left which was the result of workmanship. The coin posted by gsimonel was, as he put it, beat up in circulation. His suffers from wear making the separation between crown and hair unclear compared to your unworn coin. The coin shown by ancient coin hunter has a really good strike but some wear on the high points on both sides. See how the detail in the crown, ear and hair are starting to merge. I prefer a well struck worn coin to a coin unchanged since it left the mint but that never was all that good looking.

    My second recommendation is to learn what is available in ancients and see what appeals to you. My way of thinking would make another Pax coin from another Third Century emperor a poor choice but this is an opinion. I would suggest the next coin be nothing like this one. I have a series of pages that introduces several categories that you might find appealing.
    You might even want to try something Greek or earlier Roman or silver or Asian or so many things that may be of interest more to some of us than to others. We have members here who collect only Late Roman, only Roman Republican or a hundred other choices. We also have people like me who collect generally and value things that are different from what we already have. It is up to you. Don't feel like there is a right or wrong answer. In the last month, I have added coins from c.400 BC and c.1300AD (and a few in between). Pick a choice and enjoy.
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2019
    Ima Dragon and furryfrog02 like this.
  19. dougsmit

    dougsmit Member Supporter

    Probably 90% of the Carausius coins we see are Pax. He has many rare types and only a couple common ones other than Pax. This one is LAETIT AVG. Pax will be easier to find.
  20. chrsmat71

    chrsmat71 I LIKE TURTLES!

    Welcome @Luke B , that's a nice looking Victorinus. Mine is kind of a turd.

  21. Alegandron

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

    Welcome, @Luke B !

    I have a Victorinus Pax, also:

    RI Victorinus 269-270 CE BI Ant Gallic Empire PAX.jpg
    RI Victorinus 269-270 CE BI Ant Gallic Empire PAX
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