Vespasian As, 73 AD - Rome or Lugdunum?

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by robinjojo, Jan 17, 2021.

  1. robinjojo

    robinjojo Supporter! Supporter

    Here's a recent arrival, an AE as of Vespasian, with an eagle on a globe for the reverse.

    My question is whether this coin was minted in Rome or Lugdunum (Lyons). Based on my research on the Internet, this coin appears to be from Rome, RIC 528, but I was wondering if anyone could confirm this.

    As far as condition is concerned, this is a dark coin with quite a bit of the original dirt still adhering to it. There are also some green patches that seem benign. I am keeping an eye on the lighter spots, but they seem quite hard, so I am leaving well enough alone for now.

    Emperor Vespasian, 71 AD
    AE As
    Obverse: IMP CAES VESPASIAN AVG COS IIII, laureate head right.
    Reverse: Eagle, head right, perched on a globe with wings half open, SC in fields.
    RIC 322, Cohen 480
    27 mm, 6h.
    10.7 grams

    D-Camera Vespasian AE As, Rome, 73 AD, RIC 528 10.7g  27mm 01-17-21.jpg

    Last edited: Jan 18, 2021
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  3. IdesOfMarch01

    IdesOfMarch01 Well-Known Member

    I'm having a little difficulty finding the COS IIII on the obverse. It looks more like COS II, for which I can't find a corresponding Vespasian as with an eagle reverse.

    RIC 528 is from the first RIC II edition; this corresponds to RIC 1202 in the revised RIC II edition. In RIC II the obverse description include "... eagle... wings outstretched..." and I'm not sure that your example fits the definition of "outstretched."

    I'll continue to search my copy of RIC but I'm less than certain it's RIC 528/1202.
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  4. robinjojo

    robinjojo Supporter! Supporter


    With my trusty Swiss Army knife magnifying glass, the legend appears to end ...COS III. Does that correspond with a RIC #? Clearly I made a mistake with the coin's description in this regard - my apologies.
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  5. robinjojo

    robinjojo Supporter! Supporter

    On Wildwinds I did find a COS III type legend, listed as RIC 322, Cohen 480.

    The eagle's neck and body seems wider, compared to the coin I posted, but I don't know if that really makes a difference.


    "Vespasian AE As, Rome. AD 69-79. 26 mm, 10.51 g. Struck AD 71.

    IMP CAES VESPASIAN AVG COS III, laureate head right.
    S-C, Eagle standing front on globe, head right, wings spread.

    RIC 322; Cohen 480.

    With permission of, auction 223, Lot 423,
    Dec 2009"

    Still looking.....

    Edit - Here's a coin that is much closer, again from Wildwinds. The reverse looks like a die match with my coin:

    "HJB-Vespasian, AS 9.52g, C-482, VF

    IMP CAES VESPASIAN AVG COS III, laureate head right
    S-C, eagle standing on globe with wings open, head right.

    New RIC 1168; Cohen 480."
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2021
  6. IdesOfMarch01

    IdesOfMarch01 Well-Known Member

    If the obverse is COS III with no globe at the base of the bust, then it's very likely to be RIC II.2 322 corresponding to RIC II.1 497, Rome mint. The description of the eagle is "wings open" which appears to be an accurate description of your coin.

    Although it could be RIC II.2 1170 (Lugdunum mint) with the globe at the base of the obverse bust, I think this is not it, since for this coin the description of the eagle is "wings outstretched."
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  7. robinjojo

    robinjojo Supporter! Supporter


    Please see my last post.
  8. David Atherton

    David Atherton Flavian Fanatic Supporter

    Style is Rome. And yes, COS III = 71 AD.
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  9. singig

    singig Well-Known Member

    I also think that yours is a reverse die match with RIC 1168 from wildwinds , this type is declared as Lugdunum mint :

    I have a COS IIII from Lugdunum :
    Vespasian AE As. Lyons mint, 72 AD.
    IMP CAESAR VESPASIAN AVG COS IIII, laureate head right, globe at point of bust / S-C, Eagle standing facing on globe, head right.
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  10. Tony1982

    Tony1982 Well-Known Member

    From my knowledge the Lugdunum mint always has a globe at the base of truncation as on my coin :
    vespasian æ as
    Cos VIII
    Lugdunum mint c77-78 AD
    RIC II 764
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  11. Jay GT4

    Jay GT4 Well-Known Member


    As mentioned Lugdunum has a unique style and the globe below the bust.


    Laureate head of Vespasian right w globe

    Eagle standing facing on globe, head right, wings spread

    Lugdunum mint

    77-78 AD


    RIC 1237 (C3); Sear 2362

    From the collection of Gordon Wyatt Goldfinch (1895-1918) of Elfindale Road, London.
    With hand written old ticket citing #209 collection number.
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2021
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  12. robinjojo

    robinjojo Supporter! Supporter

    Thank you all for the help attributing this coin to a RIC #.

    I don't see a ball or large dot at the base of the neck on my coin, so although RIC 1168 is said to be from Lugdunum, the lack of a ball on the obverse, plus the wings of the eagle on the reverse being more drawn in, compared to the out stretched wings that I have seen from Lugdunum examples, suggests to me that my coin is probably from Rome, unless the two mints shared dies, which is a possibility.

    It is interesting that the citation from Wildwinds that was used for RIC 1168 does not mention the mint. This coin apparently was sold by Harlan Berk, and I assume the lack of mint information was just an oversight on their part.
  13. David Atherton

    David Atherton Flavian Fanatic Supporter

    Your coin is RIC 322, Rome mint, 71 AD. Trust me. Lol
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  14. robinjojo

    robinjojo Supporter! Supporter

    I checked Wildwinds, and you're right. It is a bit confusing that HB would call the coin they posted a RIC 1168, unless this is the new RIC # for this coin?
  15. Jay GT4

    Jay GT4 Well-Known Member

    Wildwinds is not perfect. Dane has spent years trying to fix all the bad attributions and I doubt HJB posted the coin there. It was probably the person who bought it.

    If you're thinking of collecting Flavians, spend the money on the new RIC or simply browse David's gallery:

    orfews gallery:

    or my own gallery at Forum.

    All the attributions will be correct and you should find most Flavian coins in these galleries
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  16. robinjojo

    robinjojo Supporter! Supporter


    I have quite a few Flavians, in addition to other Roman dynasties and lines (Claudian, Adoptive, Severan, etc.), but I usually rely on the information that accompanies a coin. This coin had no information, hence the trip down the rabbit hole.

    I bookmarked the links for future reference.
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