Roman Republic, moneyer: presumably L. Caecilius Metellus Diadematus, or L. Caecilius Metellus Delmaticus, AR denarius, 128 BC, Rome mint. Obv: head of Roma r., helmeted; behind, crossed X. Rev: [ROMA]; goddess (Pax or Juno Regina) in biga r., holding sceptre and reins in l. hand and branch in r. hand; below, elephant’s head with bell attached. 17mm, 3.88g. Ref: RRC 262/1. Ex Artemide, e-live auction 17, lot 251. I am generally fond of elephants on ancient coins, and this one is no exception. The elephant head is the badge of the Metelli family. I refers to the victory of one of the moneyer's ancestors over Hasdrubal at Panormus in 250, in which the former captured Hasdrubal's elephants. It is somewhat unusual that the moneyer is identified only by his family badge on this denarius. According to Crawford, the moneyer probably was L. Caecilius Metellus Diadematus (consul in 117 BC) or L. Caecilius Metellus Delmaticus (consul in 119 BC). The latter appears a particularly likely candidate since three of his brothers also held a moneyership, which led to somewhat of an abundance of small elephants on denarii from the 120s... I particularly like the toning on my example. It seems that these are typically struck on small flans, so part of the reverse design usually is missing. My example has a full goddess and complete horses, thus I can live without most of the chariot's rear wheels and the letters "ROMA." Please show your elephant coins and recent Republican purchases!