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Luna, the Moon - this deity was by the Romans, who borrowed worship of her from the Greeks, generally identified with Diana, from which chaste goddess she is, however, to be distinguished, insasmuch as to Luna, or Selena, were attributed certain amorous adventures, amongst others that with Endymion, of which the fable is depicted on one of the Contorniates in Havercamp 's collection.
The symbols of Luna are various on Roman coins; on those of Vespasian, Titus, Domitian, Trajan, and Hadrian (second brass), the figure of Eternity holds in her |hands| the heads of the Sun and Moon. The moon mingled with stars is a type of Consecration, and serves on a second brass of Faustina Senior to designate the reception of that empress amongst the celestial divinities. On a second brass of Faustina Junior Luna is seen standing with a torch in each hand, symbolically pointing to that princess as SIDERIBVS RECEPTA. Also see AETERNITAS and CONSECRATIO.
Luna is represented in different designs on the coins of the empresses, amongst others in those which exhibit Julia Domna, whether in allusion to the fecundity of that princess, or as flattering her with the fond idea of being another light to the world. She appears in a biga of bulls on coins of Caracalla. The Crescent, or two-horned moon, over or under the head of the emperor or empress, on coins of Augustus, Nero, Commodus, Julia Mamaea, Otacilia, Etruscilla, Salonina, Saloninus, Postumus, etc.
The Luna Crescens, with seven stars, appears on a silver coin of Hadrian.
View whole page from the |Dictionary Of Roman Coins|