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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Gods, Non-Olympian ▸ SpesView Options:  |  |  | 

Elpis or Spes

Elpis was the Greek, and Spes the Roman, personification of Hope. According the Hesiod's famous story, Elpis was the last to escape the Pandora's box. It can be debated whether she was really about "hope" as we understand it, or rather mere "expectation." In art, Elpis is normally depicted carrying flowers or a cornucopia, but on coins she is almost invariably depicted holding a flower in her extended right, while the left is raising a fold of her dress. She was also named "ultima dea" - the last resort of men.

Claudius II Gothicus, September 268 - August or September 270 A.D.

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In November 268, at the Battle of Lake Benacus a Roman army of 35,000 men under emperor Claudius II defeated the Germanic tribes of the Alamanni along the banks of Lake Garda.
RA72404. Billon antoninianus, MER-RIC 26, RIC V 168, Venra Hoard 9073, Normanby 1004, Hunter IV 62, Cohen VI 284, SRCV III 11374, aEF, tight flan, weight 4.053 g, maximum diameter 18.8 mm, die axis 0o, Mediolanum (Milan, Italy) mint, 1st emission, c. Sep 268 - mid 269; obverse IMP CLAVDIVS P F AVG, radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse SPES PVBLICA, Spes standing left, raising flower in right, raising fold of drapery with left, P in exergue; ex Robert T. Golan; $18.00 (15.84)

Faustina Junior, Augusta 146 - Winter 175/176 A.D., Wife of Marcus Aurelius

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Minted under her father, Antoninus Pius. Spes, the personification of hope, was used on coins of the caesar, the son and designated successor of the emperor, to indicate he was the hope for the future. This coin is unusual because the hope for the future is identified as the Augusti, both the daughter and the adopted son of the emperor, Faustina Jr and her husband Marcus Aurelius.
RS74229. Silver denarius, RIC III Pius 497, RSC II 24, BMCRE IV Pius 1106, SRCV II 4702, F, toned, well centered, small edge cracks, weight 3.036 g, maximum diameter 17.9 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 157 - 161 A.D.; obverse FAVSTINA AVGVSTA, draped bust right; reverse AVGVSTI PII FIL, Spes standing facing, head left, flower in right, gather of skirt in left; $5.50 (4.84)


Catalog current as of Tuesday, December 01, 2015.
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Elpis or Spes