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The Triumvirs, Mark Antony and Cleopatra, c. Autumn 34 B.C.
This lead seal clearly copies the portrait of Cleopatra VII as represented on the denarius type RRC 543/1 - everything from the countenance of the face, the hairstyle, and the drapery matches closely. The seal is made to a much higher standard than is usual with lead tesserae - it may have been struck from an unknown coin die - and the presence of the caduceus may relate to the cult of Isis. -- Andrew McCabeSH95312. Lead tessera, apparently unpublished, but cf. Crawford 543/1 for a similar portrait, VF, brown patina with touches of red, weight 6.491 g, maximum diameter 21.7 mm, c. autumn 34 B.C.; obverse diademed and draped female bust right (Cleopatra?), winged caduceus before; reverse blank; ex CNG e-sale 458 (18 Dec 2019), lot 305; ex Andrew McCabe Collection, ex Marc de Cock (Belgium); $900.00 (828.00)
Faustina Junior, Augusta 146 - Winter 175/176 A.D., Wife of Marcus Aurelius, Roman Provincial Egypt
Tyche was the presiding tutelary deity who governed the fortune and prosperity of a city, its destiny. In mythology, she is the daughter of Aphrodite and Zeus or Hermes. Polybius wrote that when no cause can be discovered for events such as floods, droughts, frosts, or even in politics, then the cause was likely Tyche. In the Hellenistic period, cities began venerating iconic versions of Tyche specific to their city. This practice continued even into the Christian period but by then the Tyche were probably seen as merely personifications of the city with little religious significance. Roma was depicted in military garb. Constantinopolis carried a cornucopia. The Tyche of Antioch had the river god Orontes swimming at her feet. The Tyche of Alexandria usually stood holding grain and resting her foot on the prow of a ship.RX92513. Bronze drachm, Geissen 1965; BMC Alexandria p. 164, 1337; RPC Online IV.4 13740; Dattari 3298 var. (date arrangement); Milne 2150 var. (same); Emmett 2006/15 (R2), VF, well centered on a tight ragged irregular flan, dark tone, highlighting chalky encrustations, scratches and bumps, some scattered small pits, weight 25.844 g, maximum diameter 35.0 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 151 - 28 Aug 152 A.D.; obverse ΦAVCTIN CEB EVCEB ΘVΓ, draped bust of Faustina right; reverse Tyche reclining left on a couch, base of couch adorned with garlands, kalathos on head, wearing chiton and peplos, rudder held by tiller in right hand, propping head with left hand, L IE (year 15) upper left; from the Errett Bishop Collection; scarce; $360.00 (331.20)
Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D., Roman Egypt
NEW Antonia was daughter of Marc Antony and Octavia, wife of Nero Claudius Drusus, sister-in-law of Tiberius, mother of Claudius, and grandmother of Caligula. Renowned for her beauty and virtue, Antonia spent her long life revered by the Roman people and enjoyed many honors conferred upon her by her relatives. All her coinage was issued early in the reign of Claudius. She died around 37 A.D., possibly as a result of forced suicide ordered by Caligula.RX92586. Billon tetradrachm, RPC I Online 5117 (11 spec.); Geissen 62; Dattari 114; Milne 61; BMC Alexandria p. 9, 65; SNG Milan 620, SNG Cop 57; Kampmann 12.3, Emmett 73/2 (R1), VF, nice portraits, toned, area of weakness below each bust, reverse a little off center, marks, porosity, weight 12.829 g, maximum diameter 25.6 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 41 - 28 Aug 42 A.D.; obverse TI KΛAY∆I KAIΣ ΣEBA ΓEPMANI AYTOKP, laureate head right, date LB (year 2) lower right; reverse ANTΩNIA ΣEBAΣTH, bust of Antonia right, hair in queue; from the Errett Bishop Collection; $300.00 SALE |PRICE| $270.00 ON RESERVE
Julia Domna, Augusta 194 - 8 April 217 A.D.
Julia Domna was born in Emesa (now Homs), Syria in 170 A.D. She was the youngest daughter of high-priest Julius Bassianus, a descendant of the Royal House of Emesa. Emesa was famous for its Temple of the Sun, the center of worship for the ancient pagan cult El-Gebal (or Elagabal). El-Gebal, worshiped in the form of a conical black stone, was the Aramaic name for the Syrian Sun God and means God of the Mountain. Emesa was also the birthplace of three other Roman empresses, Julia Maesa, Julia Mamaea and Julia Soaemias, and one emperor, Julia Domna's nephew, Elagabalus.RS92345. Silver denarius, RIC IV S627 (S); RSC III 103; BMCRE V p. 104, 418; SRCV II 6591, F, off center, minor encrustations, edge cracks, weight 3.225 g, maximum diameter 19.0 mm, die axis 180o, Emesa (Homs, Syria) mint, 194 - 195 A.D.; obverse IVLIA DOMNA AVG, draped bust right; reverse LIBERAL AVG, Liberalitas standing slightly left, polos or kalathos on head, counting board in right hand, cornucopia in left hand; only one sale in the last two decades recorded on Coin Archives (an ex Forum coin!); rare; $240.00 (220.80)
Kingdom of Mauretania, Juba II and Cleopatra Selene, 25 B.C. - 24 A.D.
After his father's defeat and suicide, Juba II was take to Rome and paraded in Caesar's triumph. He was then raised in Caesar's household where he and Octavian became lifelong friends. He accompanied Octavian on campaigns after Caesar's death even fighting at the battle of Actium against his future wife's parents. Cleopatra Selene was the daughter of Cleopatra VII by Marc Antony. After the battle of Actium, she was raised by Octavia, Octavian's sister. Augustus restored Juba II as the king of Numidia c. 28 B.C. and later arranged for him to marry Cleopatra Selene II giving her a large dowry and appointing her queen.SL95881. Bronze AE 27, Alexandropoulos 209, Mazard 351 (RRR), SNG Cop 605, De Luynes 4013, NGC F, strike 4/5, surface 2/5, lt. smoothing (5872605-040), weight 18.59 g, maximum diameter 27 mm, die axis 90o, Caesarea (Cherchell, Algeria) mint, 25 B.C. - 24 A.D.; obverse REX IVBA, diademed and draped bust right, club over shoulder; reverse BACI−ΛICCA / KΛEOΠATPA, headdress of Isis, with stalks of grain, crescent above; NGC| Lookup; very rare; $225.00 (207.00)
Julia Domna, Augusta, 194 - 8 April 217 A.D.
Although many coin references classify Fecunditas as a personification of fertility rather than as an actual deity, Fecunditas was recognized as a Roman divinity by Nero, who erected a statue to her. Tacitus notes that upon the birth of Claudia Neronis, the senate decreed the construction of a temple of Fertility to be built at Antium. Fecunditas is always portrayed as a female figure holding a child, or children and often a scepter, cornucopia, palm branch or caduceus. Sometimes the children are depicted standing at her feet. Coins portraying her usually advertise the fertility of the imperial family.RS89455. Silver denarius, RIC IV S534 (S); RSC III 42; BMCRE V p. 27, W46; SRCV II 6580; Hunter III -, VF/F, excellent portrait, toned, flaw on reverse, small edge cracks, weight 2.934 g, maximum diameter 17.6 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, c. 195 - 196 A.D.; obverse IVLIA DOMNA AVG, draped bust right, hair in horizontal ridges, large chignon at back of head; reverse FECVNDITAS (fertility), Fecunditas seated right on throne, holding child in her arms, another child at her feet on right, standing left; very rare; $216.00 (198.72)
Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Ptolemy II Philadelphos, 285 - 246 B.C.
Most finds of this type are from Bulgaria, suggesting a mint in Thrace. This type is found both with and without central depressions, indicating it was struck both before and after the coinage reform of 265 B.C., after which central depressions (dimples) became a feature of Ptolemaic coinage. This example is pre-reform. GP86417. Bronze AE 17, Svoronos 351, SNG Cop 100, Lorber CPE B310 var. (post reform), SNG Milan -, Weiser -, Noeske -, BMC Ptolemies -, Malter -, aVF, obv. die break from nose to edge, rev. well centered on a tight flan, bumps, marks, corrosion, without central cavities, weight 5.472 g, maximum diameter 17.4 mm, die axis 270o, uncertain (Thracian?) mint, pre-reform, 285 - 265 B.C.; obverse veiled and diademed bust of Arsinoe II right; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ (King Ptolemy), eagle standing left on fulmen (thunderbolt), head left, wings open, ∆I over (AX monogram) left; see CNG e-auction 92 (23 Jun 2004), lot 64, for another specimen with the same obverse die break; rare; $160.00 (147.20)
Julia Domna, Augusta 194 - 8 April 217 A.D.
Vesta was originally a household spirit. Later she was personified as the goddess of the hearth and given the stature of her Greek equivalent, Hestia. In the temple of Vesta, her sacred flame was kept alive by Vestal Virgins. In 394, by order of the Christian emperor Theodosius I in his campaign to eliminate pagan practices in Rome, the fire of Vesta was extinguished.RB91372. Orichalcum sestertius, BMCRE IV p. 123, 492; RIC IV p. 207, 843 (R); Hunter III 42; Cohen IV 222; SRCV II 6632, VF, well centered, porous, corrosion, rough areas, weight 23.018 g, maximum diameter 30.6 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 193 - 196 A.D.; obverse IVLIA DOMNA AVG, draped bare-headed bust right, hair in waved horizontal ridges; reverse VESTA, Vest seated left on throne, palladium in right hand, long scepter transverse in left hand, S - C (senatus consulto) divided low across field; from a New England dealer; rare; $160.00 (147.20)
Julia Domna, Augusta, 194 - 8 April 217 A.D.
Julia Domna and her children as Terra and the Four Seasons! "The flatterers of Julia Domna pretended that all things were owing to her. The star-besprinkled globe represents the Roman world, which with her husband Septimius Severus she governed; and to the empire of which she destines her two sons, Caracalla and Geta, who, together with as many daughters, are the proof of her fecundity." -- Rasche, T. ii pl l p 932.RS85789. Silver denarius, RIC IV S549 (R), RSC III 35, BMCRE V S21, Hunter III S22, SRCV II 6579, F, well centered, slightly rough with light even corrosion, edge cracks, weight 2.369 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 207 A.D.; obverse IVLIA AVGVSTA, draped bust right, hair in horizontal ridges, bun at back of head; reverse FECVNDITAS (fertility), Terra reclining left under a vine, nude to the waist, right hand set on globe spangled with stars, leaning on left arm on basket of fruits, in background four children representing the four seasons; rare; $145.00 (133.40)
Faustina Sr., Augusta 25 February 138 - Early 141, Wife of Antoninus Pius
Pietas in traditional Latin usage expressed a complex, highly valued Roman virtue; a man or woman with pietas respected his or her responsibilities to the gods, family, other people and entities (such as the state), and understood his or her place in society with respect to others.RS96969. Silver denarius, RIC III AP394a, RSC II 234, BMCRE IV AP311, SRCV II 4598, Choice VF, well centered, superb matron portrait, old collection toning, flow lines, tiny edge cracks, weight 2.992 g, maximum diameter 17.5 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, posthumous, 145 A.D.; obverse DIVA AVG FAVSTINA, draped bust right, hair elaborately waived and banded, drawn up at the back and piled in a round coil at top; reverse PIETAS AVG (to the piety of the Emperor), Pietas standing slightly left, head left, veiled and draped, dropping incense from right hand on flaming garlanded column altar on left, incense box in left hand; ex Forum (2009); $140.00 (128.80)