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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Roman Coins ▸ The Twelve Caesars ▸ NeroView Options:  |  |  | 

Nero, 13 October 54 - 9 June 68 A.D.

Nero became emperor after his stepfather, the emperor Claudius, died (Claudius was probably poisoned by Nero's mother Agrippina II). At first Nero ruled well, guided by his mentors Seneca and Burrus, but soon his reign degenerated into the debauchery and murder for which he is infamous. He had his mother, Burrus, Britannicus, and numerous senators and members of the nobility murdered or executed. Legend says he kicked Poppaea, his pregnant wife, to death. He was the first emperor to persecute Christians, blaming them for the Great Fire in 64 A.D. Nero committed suicide in 68 A.D after generals in Africa, Gaul and Spain all rebelled, and the Praetorian Guard in Rome deserted him.


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The shield held by Victory is the golden shield that was dedicated to Augustus by the Senate and Roman People (S. P. Q. R.) in recognition of his classic, cardinal virtues. By placing the shield and Victory on his coin, Nero was claiming these same virtues were part of his regime. -- Roman History from Coins by Michael Grant
RB79760. Copper as, RIC I 312, BMCRE I 241, SRCV I 1976, aF, rough, weight 8.669 g, maximum diameter 26.9 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 65 A.D.; obverse NERO CAESAR AVG GERM IMP, laureate head right; reverse Victory flying left holding shield inscribed S P Q R, S - C flanking across field; $70.00 (€62.30)
 


Nero, 13 October 54 - 9 June 68 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt

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In ancient times, Alexandria was one of the world's most famous cities, known for its lighthouse (Pharos, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World) and its library (the largest in the ancient world). Founded around 331 B.C. by Alexander the Great, it was Egypt's capital for nearly a thousand years, until the Muslim conquest of Egypt in 641 A.D.
SH79768. Billon tetradrachm, Dattari 204, Geissen 172, Milne 238, Kampmann-Ganschow 14.88, BMC Alexandria 163, RPC I 5289, SRCV I 2004, Emmett 109, VF, toned, tight flan, porous, weight 12.065 g, maximum diameter 23.0 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 65 - 28 Aug 66 A.D.; obverse NEPΩ KΛAY KAIΣ ΣEB ΓEP AY, radiate bust right wearing aegis; reverse AYTOKPA, draped bust of Alexandria right wearing elephant-skin headdress, LIB (year 12) right; $95.00 (€84.55)
 


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In either late 67 or early 68, Gaius Iulius Vindex, the Roman governor of Gallia Lugdunensis rebelled against Nero's tax policy. In order to gain support, he declared allegiance to Galba, the governor of Hispania Tarraconensis, as the new emperor. Vindex was defeated and killed in battle near Vesontio (modern Besancon) but support for Galba grew. On 9 June 68, deserted by the Praetorian Guard, Nero stabbed himself in the throat.
RS79253. Silver denarius, RSC II 119; RIC I 53; BMCRE I p. 210, 74; Mac Dowall WCN 57; BnF II 220; Hunter I 28, F, nice portrait, centered, toned, scratches, weight 3.129 g, maximum diameter 18.7 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 64 - 66 A.D.; obverse NERO CAESAR AVGVSTVS, laureate head right; reverse IVPPITER CVSTOS (Jupiter the Preserver), Jupiter seated left, bare to the waist, himation around hips and legs, thunderbolt in right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand; ex Forum (2012); $270.00 (€240.30)
 


Nero, 13 October 54 - 9 June 68 A.D., Antioch, Syria

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The Greeks and Romans did not view snakes as evil creatures but rather as symbols and tools for healing and fertility. Asclepius, the son of Apollo and Koronis, learned the secrets of keeping death at bay after observing one serpent bringing another healing herbs. Woman seeking fertility, the sick, and the injured slept in his temples in chambers where non-poisonous snakes were left to crawl on the floor and provide healing.
RY78047. Bronze semis, McAlee 300(c); RPC I 4310; BMC Galatia p. 173, 180, gF, encrustations, porous, weight 6.952 g, maximum diameter 21.0 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 13 Oct 54 - 9 Jun 68 A.D.; obverse IM NER CLAV CAESAR, laureate head right, coiled snake with head erect right before; reverse large S•C, no dot above or below, within linear circle inside laurel wreath; from the Butte College Foundation, ex Lindgren; $38.00 (€33.82)
 


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To celebrate his escape from the Pisonian conspiracy and assassination attempt in 65 A.D., Nero constructed a temple to Salus, the Roman goddess of health and safety, and honored her on the reverse of his coins.
RS77547. Silver denarius, RIC I 67, RSC II 318, BMCRE I 90, BnF II 237, Hunter I 30, SRCV I 1945, aF, toned, marks and scratches, weight 2.550 g, maximum diameter 18.4 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 66 - 67 A.D.; obverse NERO CAESAR AVGVSTVS, laureate head right; reverse Salus enthroned left, patera in extended right hand, left elbow on throne, SALVS in exergue; $90.00 (€80.10)
 


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To celebrate his escape from the Pisonian conspiracy and assassination attempt in 65 A.D., Nero constructed a temple to Salus, the Roman goddess of health and safety, and honored her on the reverse of his coins.
RS77349. Silver denarius, RIC I 71 (R), BMCRE I 98, RSC II 316, Mac Dowall WCN 66, BnF II 242, cf. SRCV I 1945 (obv leg, 66 - 67), F, well centered, toned, tiny edge cracks, weight 3.181 g, maximum diameter 18.5 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 67 - 68 A.D.; obverse IMP NERO CAESAR AVG P P, laureate head right; reverse Salus seated left on facing high-back throne, patera in right hand, left hand at side, SALVS in exergue; rare; $140.00 (€124.60)
 


Nero, 13 October 54 - 9 June 68 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt

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In ancient times, Alexandria was one of the world's most famous cities, known for its lighthouse (Pharos, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World) and its library (the largest in the ancient world). Founded around 331 B.C. by Alexander the Great, it was Egypt's capital for nearly a thousand years, until the Muslim conquest of Egypt in 641 A.D.
RX76578. Billon tetradrachm, Dattari 204, Geissen 172, Milne 238, Kampmann-Ganschow 14.88, BMC Alexandria 163, RPC I 5289, SRCV I 2004, Emmett 109, F, dark toning, edge spilt, small deposits, weight 12.403 g, maximum diameter 23.8 mm, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 65 - 28 Aug 66 A.D.; obverse NEPΩ KΛAY KAIΣ ΣEB ΓEP AY, radiate bust right wearing aegis; reverse AYTOKPA, draped bust of Alexandria right wearing elephant-skin headdress, LIB (year 12) right; $120.00 (€106.80)
 


Nero, 13 October 54 - 9 June 68 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt

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In 64 A.D., according to Tacitus, The Great Fire of Rome burned for five and a half days. Only four of the fourteen districts of Rome escaped the fire; three were completely destroyed and another seven seriously damaged. Nero, blaming the Christians, ordered them thrown to dogs, crucified or burned to serve as lights.
RX76580. Billon tetradrachm, Dattari 271; Milne 236; Curtis 97; BMC Alexandria p 20, 166; RPC I 5284; Geissen 167; Kampmann-Ganschow 14.83, aF, porous, some pitting, coppery area, weight 11.337 g, maximum diameter 24.3 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 64 - 28 Aug 65 A.D.; obverse NEPΩ KΛAY KAIΣ ΣEB ΓEP, radiate bust right wearing aegis; reverse AYTOKPA, eagle standing left, palm under wing, L IA (year 11) left, simpulum right; $75.00 (€66.75)
 


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The shield held by Victory is the golden shield that was dedicated to Augustus by the Senate and Roman People (S. P. Q. R.) in recognition of his classic, cardinal virtues. By placing the shield and Victory on his coin, Nero was claiming these same virtues were part of his regime. -- Roman History from Coins by Michael Grant
RB76309. Copper as, RIC I 313, BMCRE I 245, Hunter I 94, Cohen I 289, BnF I 399 var. (head right), SRCV I 1976 var. (same), gF, dark green patina, weight 12.004 g, maximum diameter 29.2 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 65 A.D.; obverse NERO CAESAR AVG GERM IMP, laureate head left; reverse Victory alighting left, wings open, shield inscribed S P Q R in right, left hand at waist, S - C across field below center; $125.00 (€111.25)
 


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In 46 A.D., after the death of the Thracian king Rhoemetalces III and after an unsuccessful anti-Roman revolt, the Thracian Kingdom was annexed by Claudius as the Roman province of Thracia. Perinthus was made the capital of Roman Thracia. All the Latin coins of Perinthus are rare. BMC does not list Perinthus mint, but identifies this type as "barbarous." RIC notes the existence of Balkan sestertii, dupondii and asses but does not catalog them.
RB90366. Copper as, RPC I Supp. S-1760a, F, corrosion, light scratches, weight 8.452 g, maximum diameter 27.7 mm, die axis 315o, Heraclea Perinthos (Marmara Ereglisi, Turkey) mint, 63 - 9 Jun 68 A.D.; obverse NERO CLAVDIVS CAESAR AVG, laureate head right; reverse Neptune standing half left, dolphin in right, long vertical trident in left, S - C flanking across field; very rare; $180.00 (€160.20)
 










OBVERSE LEGENDS

IMPNEROCAESARAVGPMAXTRPOTPP
IMPNEROCAESARAVGPMAXTRPPP
IMPNEROCAESARAVGPMTRPOTPP
IMPNEROCAESARAVGPONTMAXTRPOTPP
IMPNEROCAESARAVGPP
IMPNEROCAESARAVGVSTVS
NEROCAESAR
NEROCAESARAVGGERMIMP
NEROCAESARAVGIMP
NEROCAESARAVGVSTVS
NEROCAESAVGIMP
NEROCLAVCAEAVGGER
NEROCLAVDCAESARAVGGERMANI
NEROCLAVDCAESARAVGGERMPMTRPIMP
NEROCLAVDCAESARAVGGERPMTRPIMPPP
NEROCLAVDCAESARAVGGERMPMTRPIMPPP
NEROCLAVDCAESDRVSVSGERMPRINCIVVENT
NEROCLAVDDIVICLAVDFCAESARAVG
NEROCLAVDDIVICLAVDFCAESARAVGGERMANI
NEROCLAVDIVSCAESARAVGGERMA
NEROCLAVDIVSCAESARAVGGERMANIC
NEROCLAVDIVSCAESARAVGGERMPMTRPIMPPP
NEROCLDIVIFCAESAVGPMTRPII
NERONERONICLAVDIODRVSOGERMCOSDESIGN
NERONICLAVDIODRVSOGERMCOSDESIGN


REFERENCES

American Numismatic Society (ANS) Collections Database Online - http://numismatics.org/search/search
Burnett, A., M. Amandry and P.P. Ripollès. Roman Provincial Coinage I: From the death of Caesar to the death of Vitellius (44 BC-AD 69). (London, 1992 and supplement).
Calicó, E. Xavier. The Roman Avrei, Vol. I: From the Republic to Pertinax, 196 BC - 193 AD. (Barcelona, 2003).
Clay, C.L. "Münzprägung des Kaisers Nero" in Numismatische Zeitschrift 96 (1982), pp. 7 - 17. Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappées sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 1: Pompey to Domitian. (Paris, 1880).
Giard, J-B. Le monnayage de l'atelier de Lyon, De Claude Ier à Vespasien (41-78 après J.-C.), et au temps de Clodius Albinus (196-197 après J.-C.). (Wetteren, 2000).
Giard, J-B. Bibliothèque National Catalogue Monnaies de L'Empire Romain II: De Tebère à Néron. (Paris, 1988).
King, C.E. Roman Quinarii from the Republic to Diocletian and the Tetrarchy. (Oxford, 2007).
Mac Dowall, D.W. The Western Coinages of Nero. ANSNNM 161. (New York, 1979).
Mattingly, H. and R.A.G. Carson. Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum, Vol 1: Augustus to Vitellius. (London, 1923).
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, University of Glasgow, Vol. I. Augustus to Nerva. (Oxford, 1962).
Seaby, H.A. & R. Loosley. Roman Silver Coins, Vol. II: Tiberius to Commodus. (London, 1979).
Sear, David R. Roman Coins and Their Values, The Millennium Edition, Volume One, The Republic and the Twelve Caesars 280 BC - AD 86. (London, 2000).
Sutherland, C.H.V. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. I, From 39 BC to AD 69. (London, 1984).
Toynbee, J.M.C. Roman medallions. ANSNS 5. (New York, 1944).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).

Catalog current as of Wednesday, June 29, 2016.
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Roman Coins of Nero