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Home>Catalog>CollectingThemes>Gods,Olympians>AresorMars PAGE 1/5123

Ares or Mars

God of war and bloodshed. Symbols include the boar and the spear. Son of Zeus and Hera.


Vitellius, 2 January - 20 December 69 A.D.
Click for a larger photo Struck in 69 A.D., the Year of the Four Emperors. Vitellius invoked Mars for support against Otho after, according to Tacitus, he was brought the sword of Julius Caesar taken from the temple Mars, signifying he had been elected emperor by the consent of both armies of Germany.
SH70625. Copper as, RIC I 40, BMCRE I 99, Cohen 25, BnF III 16, VF, weight 11.606 g, maximum diameter 27.7 mm, die axis 225o, Hispania, Tarraco(?) mint, Jan - Jun 69 A.D.; obverse A VITELLIVS IMP GERMAN, laureate head left, globe at point of bust; reverse CONSENSVS EXERCITVVM (with the consent of the Army), Mars advancing left, nude but for cloak, spear in right, aquila with vexillum in left, S - C across field; ex Roma Numismatics e-sale 3 (30 Nov 2013), lot 509; scarce; $700.00 (525.00)

Persian Empire, Tarkumuwa (Datames), Satrap of Cilicia & Cappadocia, c. 384 - 360 B.C., Tarsus, Cilicia
Click for a larger photo Datames' enemies in Artaxerxes' court accused him, perhaps falsely, of intending to revolt against the Great King. Secretly warned, he then did, in fact, revolt, c. 370 B.C. The revolt appeared to be leading to a breakup of the entire western half of the empire into autonomous states. His own son's desertion to Artaxerxes was, however, the beginning of the end, which came when Datames was assassinated, c. 362 B.C.
SH70110. Silver stater, Casabonne series 1; Moysey issue 4; SNG BnF 248; SNG Cop 264; BMC Lycaonia p. 165, 18; SNG Levante -; SNGvA -, aVF, spotty toning, faint porosity, weight 10.220 g, maximum diameter 19.7 mm, die axis 225o, Tarsos mint, obverse female head facing slightly left, wearing earring and necklace; reverse Aramaic legend: TRDMW (Datames) on left, bearded and helmeted male head (Ares?) right, wearing crested Athenian helmet, O/T monogram right; ex CNG auction 269, lot 146; $550.00 (412.50)

Persian Empire, Satrapy of Cilicia, Pharnabazos, c. 379 - 374 B.C.
Click for a larger photo Cilicia extended along the Mediterranean coast east from Pamphylia to the Amanus Mountains, which separated it from Syria. The Persian Empire initially allowed tributary native kings to govern. The last king of Cilicia was dethroned after he sided in a civil war with Cyrus the Younger, who was defeated by Artaxerxes II. Cilicia became an ordinary satrapy. In 377, Pharnabazos, the satrap of Cilicia, was made commander of a Persian attempt to retake Egypt, which had rebelled and had defeated two previous attempts to retake it. Pharnabazos hired Greek mercenaries under the Athenian general Iphicrates but a dispute with Iphicrates resulted in failure of the expedition.
SH65291. Silver stater, SNGvA 5922, SNG BnF 247, SNG Cop 266, SNG Levante -, VF, rough, edge cut, underweight, weight 9.545 g, maximum diameter 22.6 mm, die axis 90o, Tarsos mint, c. 378 - 373 B.C.; obverse female head facing slightly left, wearing pendant earring and necklace; reverse helmeted and bearded head right (Ares?), Aramaic inscription FRNBZW KLK (Pharnabazos Cilicia) on left; $360.00 (270.00)

Septimius Severus, 9 April 193 - 4 February 211 A.D.
Click for a larger photo The as is a rare denomination for Septimius Severus.
SH66874. Copper as, RIC IV 683, BMCRE V 527A, Cohen 313 (4 Fr), VF, weight 11.298 g, maximum diameter 24.5 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 194 A.D.; obverse L SEPT SEV PERT AVG IMP VIIII, laureate head right; reverse MARS PATER, Mars walking right, nude but for helmet and cloak over shoulder flying behind, transverse spear in right, trophy of arms in left over shoulder; very rare; $320.00 (240.00)

Septimius Severus, 9 April 193 - 4 February 211 A.D.
Click for a larger photo Mars was the god of war and also an agricultural guardian. He was the father of Romulus and Remus, the legendary founders of Rome. In early Rome, he was second in importance only to Jupiter, and the most prominent of the military gods in the religion of the Roman army. Most of his festivals were held in March, the month named for him (Latin Martius), and in October, which began and ended the season for military campaigning and farming.
SH67076. Silver denarius, BMCRE V 82, RIC IV 45, RSC III 309, SRCV II 6309, EF, attractive reverse style, weight 2.836 g, maximum diameter 18.5 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 194 - 195 A.D.; obverse L SEPT SEV PERT AVG IMP IIII, laureate head right; reverse MARS PACATOR (Mars at Peace), Mars standing left, helmeted, nude, branch in right, inverted spear vertical behind in left; listed in RIC as common but seems to be rare; $300.00 (225.00)

Probus, Summer 276 - September 282 A.D.
Click for a larger photo
RA68708. Billon antoninianus, SRCV III 11995, RIC V 89, Cohen 367, Choice EF, weight 3.428 g, maximum diameter 21.9 mm, die axis 0o, Lugdunum mint, 281 A.D..; obverse IMP C PROBVS P F AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right; reverse MARTI VICTORI AVG, Mars standing left in military garb, branch in right, inverted spear behind in left, grounded shield at far side on left, II in ex; scarce; $250.00 (187.50)

Severus Alexander, 13 March 222 - March 235 A.D.
Click for a larger photo In 231, Severus Alexander accompanied his mother Julia Mamaea to Syria and campaigns against the Persians. Military command rested in the hands of his generals, but his presence gave additional weight to the empire's policy. The Romans were defeated and withdrew to Syria. After heavy losses on both sides, a truce was signed accepting the status quo. In 233, Alexander celebrated a triumph in Rome to commemorate his "victory."
RS65979. Silver denarius, SRCV 7882, RIC IV 246, RSC III 161a, BMCRE 831, Choice VF, high-relief portrait, toned, weight 2.874 g, maximum diameter 19.4 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 231 - 235 A.D.; obverse IMP ALEXANDER PIVS AVG, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse MARS VLTOR, Mars walking right in military garb, spear transverse in right, shield in left; $200.00 (150.00)

Probus, Summer 276 - September 282 A.D.
Click for a larger photo In 278 A.D., Probus defeated the Alamanni, expelled the Franks from Gaul, reorganized the Roman defenses on the Rhine and resettled the Germanic tribes in the devastated provinces. He adopted the titles Gothicus Maximus and Germanicus Maximus.
SH62614. Silvered antoninianus, Alfldi Siscia V type 96, n 79; RIC V 811 var (bust type), EF, weight 3.665 g, maximum diameter 22.7 mm, die axis 180o, Siscia (Sisak, Croatia) mint, 278 A.D.; obverse IMP C M AVR PROBVS AVG, radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse VIRTVS PROBI AVG, Mars walking right, nude but for cloak flying behind, transverse spear in right, trophy over shoulder in left, XXIS in ex; sharp, near full silvering and centering; $180.00 (135.00)

Roman Republic, Cn. Cornelius Blasio Cn.f., 112 - 111 B.C.
Click for a larger photo Crawford notes this type was issued with 12 different symbol pairs (e.g., the wreath and Y are always paired), each used for one month of the year.

In 112 B.C. Numidian king Jugurtha declared war on Rome, and in the following year he allegedly bribed the Consul sent against him - igniting a huge scandal.
RR66888. Silver denarius, Crawford 296/1e, BMCRR Italy 629, Sydenham 561b, RSC I Cornelia 19, SRCV I 173, VF, flat strike, banker, weight 3.670 g, maximum diameter 18.4 mm, die axis 225o, Rome mint, 112 - 111 B.C.; obverse CN BLASIO CN F (upwards on right), helmeted head of Mars right, X above, wreath (control symbol) behind; reverse Jupiter standing facing, long scepter in right, thunderbolt in left, flanked by Juno on left, and Minerva on right, Minerva crowning Jupiter with wreath, Y (control letter) between Jupiter and Minerva, ROMA in ex; scarce; $170.00 (127.50)

Geta, 209 - c. 26 December 211 A.D.
Click for a larger photo On some coins of this type but with the normal MARTI VICTORI reverse legend, the final I is cramped. On at least one reverse die the final letter(s) of the reverse legend were erased and re-engraved to RI. Apparently a number of dies for this type were originally engraved ending in R, like our coin, but few coins were struck with them prior to discovery and correction.
RS68974. Silver denarius, Unlisted legend variant; cf. RSC III 76a (VICTORI), RIC IV 103 (same, draped only), BMCRE V 742 (same, but plate coin clearly draped & cuirassed), VF, well centered, weight 3.131 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, die axis 0o, Laodicea ad Mare mint, 202 A.D.; obverse P SEPTIMIVS GETA CAES, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse MARTI VICTOR (sic), Mars advancing right, transverse spear in right, trophy over shoulder in left; rare variant; $160.00 (120.00)



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Catalog current as of Saturday, April 19, 2014.
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Ares or Mars