What's your best bargain been?

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Harry G, Feb 20, 2021.

  1. Roman Collector

    Roman Collector Supporter! Supporter

    I have picked up several very rare coins -- less than half a dozen known examples -- for my Faustina collection. Some of these I picked up for < $100. But I don't know if they are truly bargains because I haven't sold them. What's the demand for a certain bust variety or a particular reverse type? Were they bargains or merely market value? Rarity has only a loose relationship to value in the ancient coin market.
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  3. robinjojo

    robinjojo Supporter! Supporter

    Very true, variety rarity is not necessarily indicative of high value.

    Also, I've seen some Roman provincial bronzes with high rarity selling for under $100 as post auction lots. The rarity is there, but not the demand.
    PeteB likes this.
  4. Factor

    Factor Well-Known Member

    About 20 years ago I bought a solidus of Julius Nepos for $300 (picked it from a group of solidi of that period, mostly of Anastasius) and sold it on Triton for $7500. It changed few hands since, last year it brought 11,000 CHF. I wish I could afford to keep it...
  5. Volodya

    Volodya Junior Member

    This is the rarest denarius of Julius Caesar, Crawford 452/5 (rarest along with its "large head" sibling, Crawford 452/4, and excluding Crawford 482/1, perhaps struck by Octavian rather than Caesar). An Ebay purchase for $182.50.

    Phil Davis

    Phil (103).JPG
  6. Alegandron

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

    Wow. Very nice.

    I reckon the eBay business person... just... did... not... know...
    Volodya likes this.
  7. Obone

    Obone Well-Known Member

    This deal was the best discount I’ve received % wise. At a local max sold auction, someone was selling obviously fake coins. 1804 dollars and such. I noticed this Chinese dragon dollar looked ok, so picked it up for $30. Graded XF details.

    not ancient, hope that’s ok. My best ancient discount would be a lot of about four nice imperatorial coins for $1000 05FF4A75-8E13-4895-9B4B-D8379A07C8E5.jpeg
  8. Alegandron

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

    Show the Imperatorials!
  9. Marsyas Mike

    Marsyas Mike Well-Known Member

    I do enjoy these "bargain" threads - nice coins posted.

    Here's a rather scarce Hadrian Dupondius ("laureate") type. I could only find two others online, only one on OCRE, none on Wildwinds, etc. It cost $16.50.

    As with "rare" ancients, I wonder what the real story is - because this is my second example.

    The first one I posted here, "Rare but Boring":


    Hadrian - Dupondius FIDES PVBLICA Jan 2021a (0).jpg
    Hadrian Æ Dupondius
    (c. 134-138 A.D.) Rome Mint

    [HADRI]ANVS [AVG COS III P P], laureate bust right / FID[ES PVBLI]CA S C, Fides
    standing right, holding two corn-ears downwards, in right hand and basket of fruit in left.
    RIC II, 3 2269; BMC 1591
    (old RIC 890d (dupondius))
    (12.15 grams / 23 x 20 mm)
    eBay Jan. 2021 $16.50

    Attribution Note:

    "Laureate bust" dupondius; Hadrian struck these c. 128-138 A.D.

    This type with "PVBLICA" is rare; OCRE has one, which is in the Münzkabinett, Kunst Historisches Museum Wien; British Museum has one as well.

    This isn't my "best bargain" but it is my most recent - two LRB's for $10. I find this kind of "bargain" (if that what it is) can be had pretty readily on eBay. They made a nice matched pair with the sand patina, I thought.

    The Licinius has the peculiar denominational X IIG on the reverse, which is unique to this emperor, apparently (see link to CT post below - thanks Roman Collector!). Licinius also has a really big eye on this one.

    _Lot Constantine & Licinius $10 Feb. 2021 (0).jpg
    Constantine I Follis (Æ 18)
    (317-318 A.D.) Rome mint

    IMP CONSTANTINVS PF AVG, laureate, draped, cuirassed bust right / SOLI INV-I-CTO COMITI, Sol standing left in chlamys holding globe and raising right hand, wreath in left field, R T in exergue.
    RIC VII Rome 97, T
    (2.77 grams / 18 mm)
    eBay Feb. 2021 Lot @ $5.00

    Licinius I Æ Half-Follis (?)
    (321-324 A.D.) Nicomedia mint

    IMP CVAL LICIN LICINIVS P F AVG, radiate draped and cuirassed bust right / IOVI CONSERVATORI, Jupiter standing left holding Nike & scepter, eagle left, captive rt., X IIG right, SMNA in exergue.
    RIC VII Nicomedia 44
    (2.76 grams / 19 mm)
    eBay Feb. 2021 Lot @ $5.00

    "Sear (RCV iv, p. 377) writes...some have suggested that the curious numerical formula on the reverse field ...indicates a revaluation of the follis from 25 to 12-1/2 denarii (c.f. Carson, Coins of the Roman Empire, p. 167)....the adoption of the radiate crown may be connected with Licinius's devotion to...sun-god Sol Invictus at a time when the survival of paganism was being threatened by Licinius's western colleague,Constantine I." (CT Roman Collector)

  10. Roerbakmix

    Roerbakmix Well-Known Member

    My collection strategy is to stay roughly at zero costs, meaning that I have to sell with profit to expand.
    I've posted this coin a few times:
    Cnut daenorum.png
    Cnut rex daenorvm type, exceedingly rare (only two others known). Bought it as part of coin collection, unknowingly for €7,50 per coin (the other coins were valuable as well), and sold it for 1900 USD at CNG.

    Anonymous - Nomos (272-240 BC).jpg
    AR Nomos of Tarentum. This was sold in an auction that never sells coins, and was thus overlooked. Photo's were extremely poor. I paid about €25 for it.

    Mithridates II.jpg
    Not valuable per se, but a nice one for the type. From the same collection as coin nr. 1, and thus bought for €7.50.

    Anonymous - Sceatta (series D, BMC type 10, c.700-715 AD).jpg
    Knowledge helps: this is a rare BMC 10 series D sceatta, of which only about 30 are known. Bought for €200, and though valued at about 800 USD, it's here to stay :)

    Rare right looking early Bohemond III. This was part of a group lot from MPO, which I bought for the two sceatta's that were in it. Total of six coins, which I bought for about €220 or so (~40 per coin). This one turned out to be rare (only a two sold in the last 20 year, for between 400-500 USD).
  11. DanielRusev1

    DanielRusev1 Member

  12. DanielRusev1

    DanielRusev1 Member

    I've created a bargain for the seller :) Coin costed GBP 430 with auction fees, but with VAT for non-EU country shipping came about GBP 530. Probably costed $50 20 years ago. image01769.jpg
  13. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    Wow, that Nomos from Tarentum for $25! That has to merit some kind of prize.
    DanielRusev1 likes this.
  14. Finn235

    Finn235 Well-Known Member

    Some fantastic bargains in this thread!

    Some favorites of mine:

    Kyme Aiolis AR "trihemiobol" - Common as a hemiobol but unique as a larger fraction - previously sold by Roma for £220+BP then showed up in a Leu lot, average $41/coin
    Kyme Aiolis AR Trihemiobol unique.jpg

    Same lot, Cilicia unattributable satrapal AR obol, possibly finest known of type, sold for $300 20180723_Cilicia-unknown-satrap-facing-traite-135.jpg

    Ditto, sold for $250

    This is one of the finest-style Gupta drachms I've ever seen, and IMO a steal for $15 in a no-reserve ebay auction

    Axum, Aphilas AR (possibly still) gilt unit, bought in an ebay lot for less than $3/coin, and most other coins in that lot were worth $10+
    Axum AE.jpg

    Quinctillus Varus as governor of Africa, AE "As", bought individually and poorly described as "Augustus with Gaius and Lucius" for about $500 - comparable examples have seldom hammered for less than several thousand dollars
    P Quinctilius Varus AE30 Achulla Augustus Gaius Lucius.jpg

    Perhaps my best lot was this one from CNG

    Paid $250ish for the lot, kept the Carausius, Saloninus, and Tacitus, and sold the rest for over $800
  15. Tony1982

    Tony1982 Well-Known Member

    I think my best bargain in a long shot was this Hadrian sestertius listed on eBay erroneously as a fake , I paid £11.20 all in.
  16. Nathan F

    Nathan F Well-Known Member

    Hard to pick, I'm just going to share my most recent:
    I paid under $7 with shipping for this coin that arrived yesterday without any idea what it was until it arrived.
    Screenshot 2021-02-26 at 8.18.00 PM.png Screenshot 2021-02-26 at 8.18.06 PM.png
    Sassanian Occupation of Alexandria 12 nummi Khusro II 618-628 AD.
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