... The ANS MANTIS
database has the same functionality for all coinages and times (click on MAPS
for the drop down menu) ... (a couple example of MANTIS
attached below) ...
But with many wrong and missing mints
Two Greek mints in the UK
No coins minted under the Romans
Again there are some severe problems with the data quality
in these ANS
Not an integrity problem. Rather, it is an issue of classification and the source of the data, which is old long established collections
Early scholars classified Celtic
coinages of the 1st Century BC in the "Greek" oeuvre which they clearly imitated.
For example if you refer to Sear GCV I Europe
nos 154-189 from the BM you will see British attribution
. This classification remains in tact in the collections
of the BM and ANS
. You may disagree, but its not a data quality
issue in the database, simply a matter of definition of "Greek"!
All databases are imperfect and that is a fact of life.
More so, in the case of numismatic databases built on collections
assembled over a century or more, during which time definitions and even attributions may have changed. Moreover, built as they are on old collections
with little or new material being added in the last fifty years due to cultural heritage laws they are missing many new types
, newly identified mints and re-attributions.
It is wise
to be less critical of the database and more attentive to these aspects when using any database.
Certainly, it is naive in the extreme to assume any database is perfectly constructed in a manner that correlates with your view of a subject material.
Databases are the starting point for any analysis, not the end point, and need to be interrogated prudently and wisely with full knowledge of the subject material.
Used in this prudent way they are a great resource and a major step forward from the days when coins were simply deposited in basement coin cabinets, essentially hidden from view, and inaccessible to the public.
The interactive data analysis tools
attached to the databases such as the Maps
functionality are simply a first pass at screening the material in any research and make it easy for the researcher to get a feel for the aspect under interrogation and whether it is worth pursuing further in detailed analysis.
In my opinion these portals provided by the ANS
for open access research by independent scholars are a fantastic new resource that open a vast array of previously inaccessible material for study, and all from the comfort of your lounge! And it is all all funded by donations supported by volunteers, so don't be hypercritical of the opportunity provided to you for true numismatic research. Arm
chair critics abound, genuine researchers less so. As the old saying goes "Those who can do, those who can't talk about it"
and so it is with databases and their users.