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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Types ▸ Family & ChildrenView Options:  |  |  |   

Family and Children on Ancient Coins

Claudius, Messalina and Britannicus, 43 - 49 A.D., Tralleis (as Caesarea), Lydia

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On the slopes of Mount Messogis in the valley of the Meander, Tralles, was one of the largest and richest cities of Lydia. King Attalus had a splendid palace there. The local god was Zeus Larasios, but Apollo Pythius and other divinities were also worshiped. On the defeat of Antiochus, 190 B.C., Tralles, with the rest of Lydia, was assigned to the kingdom of the Attalids, under whose gentle sway it enjoyed peace and prosperity, and was one of the chief mints of the Cistophori. When Attalus III died without an heir in 133 B.C., he bequeathed the whole of Pergamon to Rome in order to prevent a civil war. Tralles was destroyed by an earthquake but was rebuilt by Augustus and took the name of Caesarea.
RP84886. Bronze AE 18, RPC I 2654; SNG Cop 691; SNG Munchen 740; SNG Righetti 1107; BMC Lydia p. 345, 124; Waddington 5423; Lindgren III 535; SNGvA -, gF, toned coppery surfaces, tight flan cutting off much of the legends, porous, weight 5.559 g, maximum diameter 17.9 mm, die axis 0o, Tralles (Aydn, Turkey) mint, 43 - 49 A.D.; obverse TI KLAY KAI CEBAC, confronting heads of Messalina and Claudius, Claudius laureate; reverse KAIΣAPEΩN BPETANNIKOΣ, togate figure of Britannicus standing slightly left, head left, holding ears of grain in right hand; $225.00 (200.25)


Vespasian, 1 July 69 - 24 June 79 A.D.

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In the Roman Republic, and Empire, the curule chair (sella curulis, supposedly from currus, "chariot") was the seat upon which magistrates holding imperium were entitled to sit. This includes dictators, magistri equitum, consuls, praetors, censors, curule aediles, and the promagistrates, temporary or de facto holders of such offices. Additionally, the Flamen of Jupiter (Flamen Dialis) was also allowed to sit on a curule seat, though this position did not hold imperium. Livy writes that the three flamines maiores or high priests of the Archaic Triad of major gods were each granted the honor of the curule chair.
SH70290. Silver denarius, RIC II, part 1, 6 (R); RSC II 541a; BMCRE II p. 8, 46; BnF III -; Hunter I -; SRCV I -, F, toned, tight flan, flan crack, weight 3.296 g, maximum diameter 18.1 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 1st issue, 21 Dec 69 - early 70 A.D.; obverse IMP CAESAR VESPASIANVS AVG, laureate head right; reverse TITVS ET DOMITIAN CAESARES PRIN IV, Titus and Domitian seated left, side by side on curule chairs, each holding a laurel branch in extended right hand; rare; $155.00 (137.95)


Julia Mamaea, Augusta 13 March 222 - February or March 235 A.D.

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Fecunditas (Latin: "fecundity, fertility") was the goddess of fertility. She was portrayed as a matron, sometimes holding a cornucopia or a hasta pura, with children in her arms or standing next to her.
RS84969. Silver denarius, RSC III 6, RIC IV 332, BMCRE VI 913, Hunter III 9, SRCV II 8208, gVF, well centered, mint luster in recesses, nice portrait, die wear, small deposits, edge cracks, weight 3.491 g, maximum diameter 19.9 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, struck under Severus Alexander, c. 232 A.D.; obverse IVLIA MAMAEA AVG, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in horizontal ridges, with looped plait at the back of neck; reverse FECVND AVGVSTAE, Fecunditas enthroned left, reaching out with her right hand to small boy standing before her nude with hands raised, left arm on chair; $150.00 (133.50)


Julia Mamaea, Augusta 13 March 222 - February or March 235 A.D.

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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.
RB73634. Copper as, RIC IV SA669, BMCRE VI 924, Cohen IV 9, SRCV II 8241, aVF, green patina, light roughness, weight 9.921 g, maximum diameter 25.1 mm, die axis 315o, Rome mint, 15th emission, c. 232 A.D.; obverse IVLIA MAMAEA AVGVSTA, diademed and draped bust right; reverse FECVNDITAS AVGVSTAE, Fecunditas standing left, extending right hand over child standing before her with arms raised, cornucopia in left hand, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking very low in field; ex CNG e-auction 243 (27 Oct 2010), lot 385; ex J.S. Wagner Collection; $130.00 (115.70)


Fausta, Augusta 324 - 326 A.D., Second Wife of Constantine the Great

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Fausta is depicted as Spes, the Roman personification of hope. She holds her infant children, Constantine II and Constantius II, her hopeful promise for the future of the "Republic."
RL76975. Billon centenionalis, RIC VII Trier p. 209, 484; LRBC I 36; SRCV IV 16560; Cohen VII 17, EF, excellent centering, green patina, cleaning scratches, spot of corrosion, weight 2.804 g, maximum diameter 19.5 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 326 A.D.; obverse FLAV MAX FAVSTA AVG, draped bust right, hair waved, bun at back, wearing pearl necklace; reverse SPES REIP-VBLICAE, Fausta standing facing, looking left, holding infants Constantine II and Constantius II, PTR followed by dot over crescent with horns up in exergue; $120.00 (106.80)


Crispina, Wife of Commodus, Augusta 178 - 182 A.D.

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Juno Lucina was the Goddess of light and of childbirth. In her honor, on 1st of March the Roman matrons celebrated the festival Matronalia and it was customary for their husbands or lovers to present gifts. Women about to give birth, particularly in labor, would address their prayers to her: Juno Lucina, fer opem, serva me, obsecro (Juno the goddess, Lucina, come to our aid, save me, I beseech thee).
RB77892. Copper as, RIC III 680, Cohen III 24, BMCRE IV 433, SRCV II 6018, F, centered, nice dark patina, scratches, weight 10.542 g, maximum diameter 27.0 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 180 - 182 A.D.; obverse CRISPINA AVGVSTA, draped bust right; reverse IVNO LVCINA (Juno goddess of childbirth), Juno standing left, patera in right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand, S - C flanking across lower half of field; from the Butte College Foundation, ex Lindgren, ex Kirk Davis; $100.00 (89.00)


Fausta, Augusta 324 - 326 A.D., Second Wife of Constantine the Great

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Fausta is depicted as Spes, the Roman personification of hope. She holds her infant children, Constantine II and Constantius II, her hopeful promise for the future of the "Republic."
RL74497. Billon centenionalis, RIC VII Nicomedia p. 621, 131 (R4); LRBC I 1102; SRCV IV 16575; Cohen VII 17, VF, excellent centering, dark green patina, marks, light corrosion, weight 2.800 g, maximum diameter 18.5 mm, die axis 0o, 1st officina, Nicomedia (Izmit, Turkey) mint, 325 - 326 A.D.; obverse FLAV MAX FAVSTA AVG, draped bust right hair waved, bun at back, wearing pearl necklace; reverse SPES REIPVBLICAE, Fausta standing facing, looking left, holding infants Constantine II and Constantius II, MNA in exergue; scarce; $85.00 (75.65)


Theodora, Augusta, 2nd Wife of Constantius I, Grandmother of Caesars and Emperors

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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.
RL79458. Billon reduced centenionalis, SRCV V 17501, Cohen VII 4, VF, attractive portrait, dark green patina, reverse struck with a worn die, areas of light corrosion, weight 1.693 g, maximum diameter 15.5 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 337 - 340 A.D.; obverse FL MAX THEODORAE AVG, draped bust right, elaborate hairstyle, pearl necklace; reverse PIETAS ROMANA, Pietas standing facing, head right, holding infant at her breast, TRP[...] in exergue; $80.00 (71.20)


Theodora, Augusta, 2nd Wife of Constantius I, Grandmother of Caesars and Emperors

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Theodora is often referred to as a stepdaughter of Emperor Maximian by ancient sources, leading to claims by historians Otto Seeck and Ernest Stein that she was born from an earlier marriage between Eutropia, wife of Maximian, and Afranius Hannibalianus. This man was consul in 292 and praetorian prefect under Diocletian. Timothy Barnes challenges this view stating that all "stepdaughter sources" derive their information from the partially unreliable work Kaisergeschichte (written in the 4th century), while more reliable sources refer Theodora as Maximian's natural daughter. He concludes that she was born no later than c. 275 to an unnamed earlier wife of Maximian, possibly one of Hannibalianus' daughters.
RL84220. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VIII Trier 91, LRBC I 129, Hunter V 3, Voetter 4, SRCV V 17502, Cohen VII 4, VF, well centered, green patina, nice portrait, reverse struck with a worn die, edge cracks, weight 1.731 g, maximum diameter 17.6 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 337 - 340 A.D.; obverse FL MAX THEODORAE AVG, draped bust right, wearing diadem, elaborate hairstyle, pearl necklace; reverse PIETAS ROMANA, Pietas standing facing, head right, holding infant at her breast, TRP and branch in exergue; $80.00 (71.20)


Theodora, Augusta, 2nd Wife of Constantius I, Grandmother of Caesars and Emperors

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Constantius I divorced his first wife Helena to marry Theodora, the daughter and step-daughter of the emperor Maximianus. Her grandchildren included Delmatius, Hanniballianus, Constantius Gallus, Julian II, Licinius II and Nepotian. Her coins were struck after Constantine's death and after the massacre of most of her descendants. Although the date of her death is unknown, her title Augusta and her coinage were probably posthumous. The reason for her coinage is uncertain, but it may have been directed by Constantine the Great's will.
RL79462. Billon reduced centenionalis, SRCV V 17500 ff., Cohen VII 4, gVF, well centered on a tight flan, some die wear, weight 1.645 g, maximum diameter 14.8 mm, die axis 0o, uncertain (Treveri?) mint, 337 - 340 A.D.; obverse FL MAX THEODORAE AVG, draped bust right, wearing diadem, elaborate hairstyle, and pearl necklace; reverse PIETAS ROMANA, Pietas standing facing, head right, holding infant at her breast, mintmark in exergue (off flan); $70.00 (62.30)




  



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Family & Children