Voting scene denarius.

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by JayAg47, May 17, 2024.

  1. JayAg47

    JayAg47 Well-Known Member

    One of my long time bucket list coins, a denarius featuring the voting scene. Now there are two options, one is this type and the Licinius Nerva one with the citizens voting on Comitium. I was open to either, provided they were cheap, as these coins despite being relatively common, tend to be on the pricier side.


    L. Cassius Longinus
    3.16 g, 19 mm, 63 B.C.
    Obv: Head of Vesta left, wearing veil and diadem; A to left, calix to right.
    Rev: Citizen standing left, dropping tablet marked 'V' into cista on right; LONGIN•III•V downwards to right.
    Crawford 413/1

    Please share your voting scenes!
    Last edited: May 17, 2024
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  3. Mat

    Mat Ancient Coincoholic

    Lovely example.

    Mine is budget too.

    P. Licinia Nerva (113-112 B.C.)
    AR Denarius
    O: Helmeted bust of Roma left, holding shield and spear over shoulder; crescent above, mark of value to left.
    R: Three citizens voting on comitium: one voter receives ballot from attendant below, another voter places ballot in cista; [P] on tablet above bar.
    Rome Mint
    Crawford 292/1, Sydenham 548; Licinia 7
  4. philologus_1

    philologus_1 Supporter! Supporter

  5. cmezner

    cmezner do ut des Supporter

    Won one in March; it has the monogram "L" on the obverse:

    Rome 60 BC, moneyer L. Cassius Longinus
    18.5 mm, 3.87 g, 8h
    Crawford 413/1; Sydenham 935; RSC Cassia 10; RBW 1493 (var., different control letter); Sear RCV I 364; BMCRR Vol. 1, Rome, 3931; Albert 1330
    Have to check again the BMC not sure the number is right...

    Ob.: Diademed and veiled bust of Vesta to l.; letter L at left, kylix at right; border of dots
    Rev.: Voter standing to l., dropping a voting tablet favorable to proposed legislation, inscribed V (Vti rogas = “as you propose”) into cista before him. LONGIN III•V downwards behind him; border of dots

    All experts note that he omitted express mention of his nomen, Cassius, and his praenomen, L. (for Lucius), mentioning only his cognomen, Longinus, on the reverse.
    The moneyer's grandfather, L. Cassius Longinus Ravilla, was a respected and severe judge who presided over the re-trial of three Vestal Virgins in 113 BC on allegations of breaking their vows. Having first been acquitted by the pontifices, Ravilla, as a special prosecutor, convicted them on retrial and two of them were buried alive as punishment.
    The obverse of this denarius issue commemorates 50 years since those events had happened.
    BMCRR, on the other hand, says that the reverse cannot refer to the retrial of the Vestal Virgins itself, since the scene on this reverse depicts a legislative vote (Vti Rogas = “as you propose” or Antiquo = “I vote against it”), rather than a trial, (Absolvo = “I absolve” or Condemno = “I acquit”).

    Harlan's argument is as follows: “By the time this coin was minted it was not the specifics of Longinus’ law that people recalled, but that voting tablet laws represented the liberation of the people from the oppression of the nobility [Quotation from Cicero’s speech Pro Sestio, concerning the voting tablet law of 137 BC, omitted.] Our moneyer’s coin reminded the people how his family had traditionally championed the people’s interests over the nobility’s and how their interests have been furthered through constitutional means rather than violent revolution which threatens the interest of all citizens. The recent involvement of a Cassius Longinus in Cataline’s attempt to effect change through violent revolution was not representative of the true values of the Cassii Longini.”

    Pictures courtesy CNG:

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