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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ History ▸ Enemies of RomeView Options:  |  |  | 

Enemies of Rome

Locri Epizephyrii, Bruttium, Italy, 280 - 275 B.C., Time of Pyrrhus

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Relations between Locri and Syracuse were close and in the late 5th century B.C. they were allied against Athenian aggression. In 282 B.C. the city received a Roman garrison for defense against the Bretti, but in 280 joined Pyrrhus and became his main South Italian mint. The Romans regained control in 275 and held it until 212 - 205 when Bruttium became the last stronghold of Hannibal and his Brettian allies.
GI87398. Bronze AE 23, Lindgren II 359 (this coin), HN Italy 2386, SNG ANS 573, SNG Cop 1889, BMC Corinth -, VF, burgundy-brown patina, porous, weight 8.985 g, maximum diameter 22.9 mm, die axis 90o, Locri Epizephyrii mint, 280 - 275 B.C.; obverse head of Athena left, wearing Corinthian helmet, necklace and drop earring, barley ear behind; reverse ΛOKPΩN (below), Pegasus flying left, AΓ monogram below; this is the Lindgren plate coin, ex FORUM (2013); $220.00 (187.00)


Syracuse, Sicily, Pyrrhus of Epirus, 278 - 276 B.C.

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In 279 B.C., Pyrrhus' forces, supporting the Greek cities of southern Italy, met and defeated the Romans at the battle of Asculum in Apulia. Pyrrhus, however, lost many men, several close associates, and all of his baggage. When one of his soldiers congratulated him on his victory, he famously replied: "Another such victory and we are ruined!" From this we have the term Pyrrhic victory, a victory achieved at ruinous cost.
GB82757. Bronze litra, Calciati II p. 325, 178; BMC Sicily p. 207, 505; SNG Cop 814, SNG ANS 850; HGC 2 1451 (R1), SNG Mnchen -, VF, brown and green patina, minor edge split, weight 9.262 g, maximum diameter 22.8 mm, die axis 90o, Syracuse mint, 278 - 276 B.C.; obverse head of Herakles left, clad in Nemean Lion scalp headdress; reverse ΣYPA-KOΣIΩN (clockwise starting at 3:00), Athena Promachos advancing right, hurling thunderbolt with right hand, oval shield on left arm, owl in lower right field; rare; $180.00 (153.00)


The First Jewish Revolt, 66 - 70 A.D.

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In 67, Jewish leaders in Jerusalem were divided by a power struggle, a brutal civil war erupted, the Zealots and the Sicarii executed anyone who tried to leave the city.
JD86851. Bronze prutah, Hendin 1360, VF, weakly struck areas, scratches, weight 2.857 g, maximum diameter 18.5 mm, die axis 315o, Jerusalem mint, year 2, 67 - 68 A.D.; obverse amphora with broad rim and two handles, year 2 (in Hebrew) around; reverse vine leaf on small branch, the freedom of Zion (in Hebrew) around; $95.00 (80.75)


Brettian League, Bruttium, Italy, c. 214 - 211 B.C., Time of Hannibal

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All coinage of the Brettii was issued during the Second Punic War when they allied themselves with Hannibal.
GI84833. Bronze quarter unit, Scheu Bronze 27, SNG Cop 1679, HN Italy 1982, F, toned copper surfaces, a little rough, weight 2.682 g, maximum diameter 16.1 mm, die axis 135o, Brettii mint, c. 214 - 211 B.C.; obverse NIKA, diademed head of Nike left, head of grain behind; reverse BPETTIΩN, Zeus standing right, nude, hurling thunderbolt with right hand, long scepter in extended left hand, star between legs, cornucopia right; $65.00 (55.25)


Commodus, March or April 177 - 31 December 192 A.D.

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It is remarkable that in the graves in Germany, no example of oblong shields are found, but all are round. -- See Collectanea Antiqua by C.R. Smith
RS85044. Silver denarius, RIC III MA606 (S), BMCRE IV M642, RSC II 77a, MIR 18 335, SRCV II 5543, Hunter II - (cxliii), aF, centered on a tight flan, toned, bumps, scratches (a few heavy), edge cracks (one long), weight 2.716 g, maximum diameter 19.2 mm, die axis 345o, Rome mint, as caesar, Jun 175 - Oct/Nov 176; obverse COMMODO CAES AVG FIL GERM SARM, bare-headed, draped bust right, seen from behind; reverse DE GERMANIS (devictus Germanis - Germans conquered), two captives seated on shields, facing outward, at the base of a trophy of captured arms, unbound mourning female on left, male on right with hands bound behind his back; scarce; $50.00 (42.50)


Pontic Kingdom, Mithradates VI Eupator the Great, c. 120 - 63 B.C., Anonymous Coinage

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Mithradates VI Megas (the Great) was king of Pontus in northern Anatolia from about 119 to 63 B.C. He was of both Greek and Persian origin, claiming descent from both Alexander the Great and King Darius I of Persia. Mithradates is remembered as one of Rome's most formidable and successful enemies, who engaged three of the most prominent generals of the late Roman Republic in the so-called Mithridatic Wars: Sulla, Lucullus, and Pompey the Great. After Mithradates VI was at last defeated by Pompey and in danger of capture by Rome, he attempted suicide. The poison failed because he had taken daily doses to build immunity. He then made his bodyguard and friend, Bituitus, kill him by the sword.
GB84575. Bronze AE 26, cf. HGC 7 310 (S), SNG Stancomb 649, SNG BM 973, SNG Cop 232 (all SNG refs. with same countermarks, none with this monogram), gF, dark patina, thick heavy flan as usual for the type, bumps and marks, light corrosion, weight 19.920 g, maximum diameter 25.6 mm, uncertain (Amisos?) mint, c. 120 - 100 B.C.; obverse male head left in a satrapal leather bashlik cap; countermarks: helmet in round punch, gorgoneion in round punch, fulmen (thunderbolt) in a rectangular punch; reverse star of eight rays, bow facing inward, monogram between rays; scarce; $40.00 (34.00)


Thessalian League, Thessaly, Greece, c. 170 B.C.

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The object on the reverse was long considered somewhat mysterious. Roger identified it as a lyre. Robinson suggested a diadem or more probably a sling. Warren argued it is a stylized depiction of a dart sling, or Kestrosphendone, a weapon first introduced during the Third Macedonian War between Rome and Perseus of Macedon. Warren suggests this type was struck at Demetrias, under orders from Perseus, to commemorate the success of the weapon.
GB84862. Bronze chalkous, Warren, "Two Notes," NC 1961, pl. I, 11; BCD Thessaly II 24.2; HGC 4 236; Rogers 4 var., VF, dark green patina, cleaning scratches, earthen deposits, weight 2.535 g, maximum diameter 14.7 mm, Demetrias(?) mint, c. 170 B.C.; obverse Macedonian shield with star in central boss; reverse kestrosphendone (dart sling) with dart inside, ΘEΣΣA/ΛΩN divided in two lines, the first above, ending below; ex John Jencek; rare; $120.00 (102.00)







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Enemies of Rome