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FORVM`s Classical Numismatics Discussion Board  |  Numismatic and History Discussions  |  Books and References (Moderator: Severus_Alexander)  |  Topic: BMCRE vs RIC??? 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: BMCRE vs RIC???  (Read 1842 times)
Mark Farrell
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« on: April 20, 2005, 06:44:58 pm »

If I have access to RIC, should I also consider the recent reprints of the British Museum Coins fo the Roman Empire? What does BMCRE provide that RIC doesn't?

Thanks,

Mark
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slokind
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« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2005, 09:22:07 pm »

Since BMCRE is their catalogue to their collection, it illustrates each coin, both sides.  But if the BM hadn't a particular coin at that time, it doesn't either list or illustrate it.  RIC is much underillustrated, but it lists every issue they knew of, whether the BM had one or not.  I have only parts of both, but on the whole I use RIC more, because I don't have BMCRE for the Severans.  Besides, a coin not in RIC is in some sense 'unlisted', whereas one not in BMCRE simply wasn't there to be catalogued at that time.  I actually bought ERIC just to help illustrate RIC.  Pat Lawrence
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curtislclay
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« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2005, 10:07:16 pm »

      Actually BMC records all known types and variants not in the collection too, and being published in general a little later than the corresponding parts of RIC, it is MORE not less complete than RIC.
      As far as it goes (up to 238 AD), BMC is immensely superior to the corresponding RIC volumes, because (1) based on an actual collection, one of the most complete in existence, whereas early RIC is essentially a chronological rearrangement of Cohen, so dependent on SOMEONE ELSE'S descriptions of the actual coins.  Early RIC usually cites, as authority, merely the Cohen number, not even specifying where Cohen saw the coin.  BMC numbers, in contrast, correspond to actual coins in the collection, so immediately have a much greater reliability; and quotations of Cohen for types not in BM usually state Cohen's source too.
     (2)  RIC has selected illustrations only; BMC almost always illustrates at least the reverse of every coin type present in the BM collection, plus a few from other collections.  If you have doubts about the details or authenticity of a certain type, BMC usually illustrates it, while RIC usually does not!  Since the BM plates illustrate every common type that occurs plus a good selection of the rarer types, they are also wonderfully useful as an attribution tool.
      (3)  Much fuller historical introductions and bibliographies in BMC than RIC.
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Curtis Clay
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« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2005, 09:16:21 am »

I have to agree completely with Curtis.   BMC especially for the Severans that I collect is a vastly superior reference.   The historical introductions are worth the price alone.

Thank you.
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David Atherton
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« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2005, 09:33:24 am »

I also completely agree with Curtis.

Sometime ago I asked on these boards which reference should I go with...Curtis replied and recommended the BMCRE volumes. I  have been grateful to him ever since!

And yes, I use the BMCRE for attributions too.
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Cheers, David

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« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2005, 12:07:36 pm »

Mea culpa.  I only showed that I told the truth in saying that I use BMCRE less: I have only IV and my univ. library has none.
Pat L.
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virtvsprobi
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« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2005, 02:50:42 pm »

Of course if one happens to collect emperors after 238, we are out of luck.

Are further volumes of BMCRE planned?

G/<
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Steve Minnoch
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« Reply #7 on: April 21, 2005, 04:09:35 pm »

While BMC is being discussed I wonder if I can sneak in a question ... does anyone know if the anonymous quadrantes of the late 1st-early 2nd centuries are discussed in BMC, and if so where?  It may be a slap-forehead job but I haven't been able to find them.

Steve
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Mark Farrell
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« Reply #8 on: April 21, 2005, 05:04:41 pm »

Thanks, all, for your input. It looks like BMCRE must be elevated in my "wish list".
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curtislclay
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« Reply #9 on: April 21, 2005, 10:52:03 pm »

       I don't know what the current situation is, but about 12 years ago Roger Bland was planning to write a COMBINED BMC and RIC for the years 238-253 AD.  Then he got involved in framing the new Treasure Trove law and has not yet returned to numismatic work as far as I know.
       As in Martin Price on Alexander the Great, such a catalogue would give both a complete list of all known varieties, plus a description of the relevant BM holdings with weights, die axes, provenances.
       No, the anonymous quadrantes are unfortunately not included in any existing British Museum Catalogue.
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Curtis Clay
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« Reply #10 on: May 09, 2005, 07:48:20 am »

Does BMCRE state RIC numbers (and letters) relative to described types (and varieties)?
I suppose it does [and I know this is not essential, but it could be useful (especially for people considering the possibility of buying only the new edition of BMCRE, skipping RIC) since RIC is still the standard reference used by dealers and by many many collectors...]

Regards,
Federico
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curtislclay
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« Reply #11 on: May 09, 2005, 10:07:23 am »

No.  BMC cites Cohen, but not RIC.
In BMC VI only, there is a concordance to RIC at the back, arranged by Cohen numbers.
So if you have a BMC number, the Cohen number will be given in a footnote, and you can find the RIC number by looking up that Cohen number in the concordance.
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Curtis Clay
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« Reply #12 on: May 09, 2005, 10:36:30 am »

Thank you very much!
Do you know if your answer applies only to the previous edition of BMC or also to the following one (for sale on Forvm) [I ask since this edition looks new or maybe still forthcoming]:
Quote
BMCRES. Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum, 6 Volumes by H. Mattingly, accepting pre-publication orders, expected availability mid April
[Is it already available, Joe?]

Thanks again and best regards,
Federico
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curtislclay
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« Reply #13 on: May 09, 2005, 11:07:49 am »

I presume that the new reprint will exactly reproduce the latest corrected reprints from the mid-late 1970s.
No major changes, such as providing concordances or adding RIC numbers in footnotes, will have been undertaken.
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Curtis Clay
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« Reply #14 on: May 09, 2005, 12:19:19 pm »

Curtis is correct. The Spink blurb says " the text, this consists of a high-quality digitally scanned reprint taken from the latest editions and reprints". But the plates are taken from the original editions rather than the reprints which generally means a better quality illustration of the coins compared to that of the reprints. I have seen this reprint and can confirm that the plates are better than previous reprints.

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David Atherton
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« Reply #15 on: May 09, 2005, 07:59:59 pm »

Hmmm...I have the 1966 reprint of BMCRE II, I wonder if it would be worth while to replace it with the new reprints?

The plates are better quality but are the introductions and catalog the same as the 1966 reprint?
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Cheers, David

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« Reply #16 on: May 09, 2005, 08:12:17 pm »

They are pretty much the same.
Minor changes were made in the 1976 reprint of Vol. II, called "Second editon prepared by R. A. G. Carson".
Unfortunately there is no preface to the new edition that explains what changes were made.  I've been working with that edition for almost six years and haven't really noticed any changes at all!
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Curtis Clay
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