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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Roman Coins| ▸ |Roman Provincial| ▸ |Roman Egypt||View Options:  |  |  |   

Roman Provincial Coins of Egypt

From Augustus' conquest until Diocletian's monetary reforms, Egypt maintained a separate currency. Hoard evidence indicates that when crossing into Egypt all imperial coinage had to be exchanged for Egyptian and when leaving all Egyptian coinage had to be exchanged for imperial coinage. Coins are dated according to the Egyptian year which began on 29 August, or 30 August following a leap year. The Egyptian tetradrachm was officially valued at one denarius.

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

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Nero| |and| |Poppaea,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.,| |Roman| |Provincial| |Egypt||tetradrachm|
RPC Online I notes, "The date does look like L IB, but the coin is very battered." and "Confirmation required. Poppaea died in AD 65, so it seems unlikely that coins should have been made for her in year 12." This is the Dattari Collection plate coin and Dattari identified it as year 12. In Alexandria, Nero's year 12 began on 29 August 65 A.D. According to Suetonius, one day in the summer of 65, Poppaea quarreled fiercely with Nero over his spending too much time at the races. She was pregnant with her second child. In a fit of rage, Nero kicked her in the abdomen, killing her. This coin suggests her death was likely on or after the 19th of August. It would have taken 9 days or more for the news of her death to reach Alexandria. This coin may have been a trial strike or perhaps one of very few struck during the first days of the new year.
RX93590. Billon tetradrachm, Dattari-Savio pl. 7, 199 (this coin!); RPC Online I 5289A (this coin!, the only spec.), aVF, brown tone, corrosion, scratches, rough, weight 7.834 g, maximum diameter 23.3 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, c. 29 Aug 65 A.D.; obverse NEPΩ KΛAV KAIΣ ΣEB ΓEP AYTO, radiate bust of Nero right; reverse ΠOΠΠAIA ΣEBAΣTH, draped bust of Poppaea right, L IB (year 12) lower right; from the Kreuzer Collection, ex Naville Numismatics auction 51 (21 Jul 2019), lot 301; ex Dattari Collection; this is the only known example of this type dated year 12!; unique!?; $670.00 (€616.40)
 


Antoninus Pius, August 138 - 7 March 161 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.,| |Roman| |Provincial| |Egypt||drachm|
The Nilometer measured the height of the annual Nile flood. Sixteen cubits was considered the ideal height of the annual Nile flood. Less could mean drought or famine. Even in modern times, grand celebrations were held when the flood reached 16 cubits. In years when the flood failed to reach 16 cubits, the celebrations were canceled, and prayers and fasting were held instead. The peak flood occurred at the end of August, which explains why the Egyptian year began on 29 August.
RX95862. Bronze drachm, RPC Online IV.4 T15735 (3 spec.); Dattari-Savio pl. 138, 2705bis var. (draped); Emmett 1613/10 (R5); Geissen -; Milne -; BMC Alexandria -; SNG Cop -, aF, well centered, light corrosion, obverse edge beveled, weight 20.203 g, maximum diameter 33.5 mm, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 146 - 28 Aug 147; obverse AYT K T AIΛ A∆P ANTWNINOC CEB EYC, laureate head right; reverse L ∆E-KATOY (year 10), Nike standing right, nude to the waist, left foot on helmet, inscribing NI/KH on an oval shield set on her left knee and a column before her; extremely rare; $350.00 (€322.00)
 


Valerian II, Caesar, Early 256 - 258 A.D., Alexandria, Egypt

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Valerian| |II,| |Caesar,| |Early| |256| |-| |258| |A.D.,| |Alexandria,| |Egypt||tetradrachm|
Publius Licinius Cornelius Valerianus (Valerian II) was the son of Gallienus and Salonina, and grandson of Valerian I and Mariniana. He was made caesar upon his father's accession as co-emperor. He died two years later without ever being raised to the rank of augustus.
RX95833. Billon tetradrachm, Geissen 2997; Dattari-Savio 5374; Milne 2989 Kampmann 92.8; Emmett 3764.5 (R1), Choice VF, dark patina, light scratches, die break between eagle's legs, weight 10.303 g, maximum diameter 22.6 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 257 - 258; obverse Π ΛIK KOP OVAΛEPIANOC KAIC CEB, bareheaded, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse eagle standing left, wings closed, head right, wreath in beak, L E (year 5 of Valerian and Gallienus) divided across field; ex Phil Peck collection; scarce; $250.00 (€230.00)
 


Antoninus Pius, August 138 - 7 March 161 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.,| |Roman| |Provincial| |Egypt||drachm|
Elpis is the personification and spirit of hope. She was depicted as a young woman, usually carrying flowers or a cornucopia in her hands. Elpis (hope) was the last item in Pandora's box, the one item, that did not escape.
RX92508. Bronze drachm, Dattari-Savio 2537 (same dies), RPC Online IV.4 T15426, Emmett 1501/5 (R4), Geissen -, Milne -, SNG Cop -, SNG Milan -, BMC Alexandria -, Kampmann -, Choice aF, nicely centered, attractive toned brown surfaces, a few light scratches, small edge cracks, weight 22.289 g, maximum diameter 34.3 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 141 - 28 Aug 142 A.D.; obverse AYT K T AIΛ A∆P - ANTWNINOC CEB - EYC, laureate head right; reverse Elpis (hope) walking left, flower in extended right hand, lifting hem of chiton with left hand, L - E (year 5) across field; from the Errett Bishop Collection; rare; $200.00 (€184.00)
 


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

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Nero,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.,| |Roman| |Provincial| |Egypt,| |Augustus| |Reverse||tetradrachm|
The Jewish Revolt began in 66 A.D. The rebels were successful at first. The Zealots took Jerusalem and annihilated the Roman garrison (a cohort of Legio III). The Sicarii captured the fortress of Masada overlooking the Dead Sea. Cestius Gallus, legate of Syria, marched into Judea leading a Roman army of 28,000 soldiers, including Legio III Gallica, Legio XII Fulminata and Legio XXII Primigenia. Unable to take the Temple in Jerusalem, he retreated to the coast where he was surrounded at Beth-Horon and nearly wiped out by the Zealots.
RX92590. Billon tetradrachm, RPC Online I 5294 (14 spec.); Dattari 184; Milne 251; Curtis 65; Geissen 177; BMC Alexandria p. 15, 112; Kampmann 14.100; Emmett 113/13 (R1), VF, garnet and blue toning/patina, well centered on a tight oval flan cutting off parts of legends, scattered porosity, small edge splits/cracks, weight 13.082 g, maximum diameter 25.5 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 66 - 28 Aug 67 A.D.; obverse NEPΩ KΛAV KAIΣ ΣEB ΓEP AV, radiate bust left, wearing aegis, LIΓ (year 13) lower left; reverse ΘEOΣ ΣEBAΣTOΣ, radiate head of Augustus right; from the Errett Bishop Collection; $160.00 (€147.20)
 


Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Claudius,| |25| |January| |41| |-| |13| |October| |54| |A.D.,| |Roman| |Provincial| |Egypt||diobol|
In 41 A.D. Claudius made Agrippa king of Judea. He also restored religious freedom to Jews throughout the empire, but prohibited Jews in Rome from proselytizing.
RX92579. Bronze diobol, RPC I 5149 (2 spec.), SNG Cop 65, SNG Milan 645, Kampmann 12.40, Emmett 77/4 (R5), Dattari-Savio -, Milne -, SNG Cop -, BMC Alexandria -, F, brown tone, scratches, scattered spots of corrosion, weight 7.894 g, maximum diameter 24.5 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 43 - 28 Aug 44 A.D.; obverse TI KΛAY KAI CEBAC ΓEPMA, laureate head right, star below chin; reverse bull butting right, AYTOKPA above, L ∆ (year 4) in exergue; from the Errett Bishop Collection; extremely rare; $130.00 (€119.60)
 


Severus Alexander, 13 March 222 - March 235 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Severus| |Alexander,| |13| |March| |222| |-| |March| |235| |A.D.,| |Roman| |Provincial| |Egypt||tetradrachm|
Dikaiosyne is the Greek personification of justice and fair dealing. One of the most common reverse types of Alexandria, she always holds scales and a cornucopia.
RX96896. Billon tetradrachm, RPC Online T10298; Geissen 2429; Dattari 4292; Milne 2951; Curtis 1059; SNG Cop 628; BMC Alexandria p. 208, 1617; Emmett 3096/5 (R1), Choice aVF, nice portrait, porosity, slightly off center, spots of corrosion on reverse edge, tiny edge cracks, weight 12.728 g, maximum diameter 23.6 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 225 - 28 Aug 226 A.D.; obverse A KAI MAP AYP CEY AΛEΞAN∆POC EV, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind; reverse Dikaiosyne (Aequitas) standing slightly left, head left, scales in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, L E (year 5) upper left; $130.00 (€119.60)
 


Severus Alexander, 13 March 222 - March 235 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Severus| |Alexander,| |13| |March| |222| |-| |March| |235| |A.D.,| |Roman| |Provincial| |Egypt||tetradrachm|
Homonoia was the goddess (or spirit or personification) of harmony, concord, unanimity, and oneness of mind. She is usually depicted either seated or standing with a cornucopia.
RP96898. Billon tetradrachm, RPC Online T10300 (9 spec.); Dattari 4307; Milne 2957; BMC Alexandria p. 209, 1623; Kampmann 62.59; Emmett 3110/5 (R1); Geissen -; SNG Cop -, Choice aVF, toned, well centered, scattered porosity/tiny pits, weight 13.046 g, maximum diameter 22.6 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 225 - 28 Aug 226 A.D.; obverse A KAI MAP AYP CEY AΛEΞAN∆POC EV, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind; reverse Homonoia standing facing, head left, raising right hand, double cornucopia in left hand, L E (year 5) left; $130.00 (€119.60)
 


Trajan, 25 January 98 - 8 or 9 August 117 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Trajan,| |25| |January| |98| |-| |8| |or| |9| |August| |117| |A.D.,| |Roman| |Provincial| |Egypt||dichalkon|
In 112, one or the greatest Roman historians, Publius Cornelius Tacitus, was Governor of the Roman province of Asia (in Anatolia). The surviving portions of his two major works - the Annals and the Histories - examine the reigns of the Roman Emperors Tiberius, Claudius, Nero and those who reigned in the Year of the Four Emperors.
RX93583. Bronze dichalkon, RPC Online III 4774 (9 spec.); SNG BnF IV 1178, Dattari-Savio 7249, Kampmann 27.525, Emmett 726 (R5), Geissen -, SNG Cop -, Choice VF, nice dark near black patina with earthen highlighting, some porosity, ragged irregular edge, reverse edge beveled, weight 1.701 g, maximum diameter 14.0 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 112 - 28 Aug 113 A.D.; obverse laureate head right; reverse oinochoe (one-handled jug for pouring wine), L - Iς (year 16) flanking in lower fields; scarce; $125.00 (€115.00)
 


Roman Egypt, Antinoopolites Nome(?), Portrait of Antinous, c. 130 - 153 A.D.

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Roman| |Egypt,| |Antinoopolites| |Nome(?),| |Portrait| |of| |Antinous,| |c.| |130| |-| |153| |A.D.||tessera|
Antinous probably joined the entourage of Hadrian when it passed through Bithynia in about 124. He became Hadrian's constant companion and lover but in October 130 Antinous drowned in the Nile. Hadrian's grief knew no bounds; he enrolled him among the gods, erected a temple, and on 30 October 130 A.D., Hadrian founded the city of Antinoopolis on the very bank of the Nile river where Antinous drowned. It was the capital of a new nome, Antinoopolites. Artists vied with each other in immortalizing his beauty. Temples and statues to his memory were erected all over the Empire, and there began a Cult of Antinous. On this coin he is depicted in the guise of Hermanubis.
RX90575. Lead tessera, Dattari 6536, Geissen 3559 var. (11.23g), Emmett 4397 (R4), F, weight 4.666 g, maximum diameter 20.6 mm, die axis 0o, Antinoopolis (or Alexandria?) mint, c. 130 - 153 A.D.; obverse draped bust of Antinous right, wearing hem-hem crown of Harpocrates, crescent before; reverse Serapis standing left, wearing chiton, himation, and kalathos on head, right hand raised, long scepter vertical behind in left; rare; $110.00 (€101.20)
 




  



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