On the world stage, the Goths first appeared around the northern shores of the Black Sea around the second century AD. From there, their migrations of different bands into Europe and in contact and war with the Roman empire most have heard about. Visigoths eventually made their way to Spain and formed a core of that country, and the Ostrogoths invaded and took over the Italian peninsula proper. Neither of these Gothic cultures lasted, being assimilated into later invader's cultures over the next few centuries. Neither of these groups of Goths were the first to issue coins either. This distinction goes to Goths on the Taman peninsula. This is an area on the northern shores of the Black Sea where Goths first appeared in the western historical record. Around the middle 3rd century they started issuing coins imitating a Roman denarius with a Mars reverse. As time went on it became more and more degraded. Almost all examples have been found on this peninsula, with a few in the immediate area around it proving it was a local issue and did not circulate widely. Taman Goths, Circa 300AD, Denarius, 2.31g: Obv: Stylized head right Rev: Winged figure right, two circles below, blundered text around. Celator 20.7 pp 22-6. Early Goths issue from the Taman Peninsula region based on a Roman Denarius. Ex Dmitry Markov Another reference for these is L.N. Kazamanova, “Varvarskie podrazhaniia rimskim denariam s tipom idushchego Marsa,” Vestnik Drevneél Istorii 1 (1961), Group III Probably goes without saying, but extremely rare. I had read about these 15 years ago or so but had never seen one for sale until this month. Of course, something so weird and rare I just had to have it even though I have blown my coin budget for a while on another recent purchase I will get around to posting soon. Interestingly, even though the Goths of the Taman peninsula were the first in the historical record, they are also the last. They were able to remain intact through invasions from the Black Huns, Kievian Rus, Mongols, and Islamic invasions. Even up into the mid 18th century there are reports of isolated villages in the area speaking Gothic as their native tongue. Sadly, this is no longer true, but still quite an impressive run.