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

Caligula, 16 March 37 - 24 January 41 A.D.

Caius Caesar was born in 12 A.D., the son of Germanicus and Agrippina Sr. He was nicknamed Caligula, meaning "little boots," by the legions because as a child his mother dressed him in military uniforms (including little boots). Initially, he was very popular, succeeding Tiberius in 37 A.D. and for a few brief months ruling very well. However, an unknown disease drove him mad and his reign soon degenerated into debauchery and murder. He was murdered by the Praetorian Guard in 41 A.D.


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The wreath on the reverse is the corona civica, the oak wreath awarded to Roman citizens ex senatus consulto (by special decree of the Senate) for saving the life of another citizen by slaying an enemy in battle. It became a prerogative for Roman emperors to be awarded the Civic Crown, originating with Augustus, who was awarded it in 27 B.C. for saving the lives of citizens by ending the series of civil wars.
SH86121. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I 37, BMCRE I 38, Cohen I 24, BnF II 50, Hunter I 15, SRCV I -, Choice VF, Tiber patina, centered and struck, attractive young portrait, some marks and corrosion, weight 26.709 g, maximum diameter 33.8 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 37 - 38 A.D.; obverse C CAESAR AVG GERMANICVS PON M TR POT, laureate head left; reverse S P Q R / P P / OB CIVES / SERVATOS in four lines within Corona Civica oak wreath; rare; $2160.00 (€1836.00)
 


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The wreath on the reverse is the corona civica, the oak wreath awarded to Roman citizens ex senatus consulto (by special decree of the Senate) for saving the life of another citizen by slaying an enemy in battle. It became a prerogative for Roman emperors to be awarded the Civic Crown, originating with Augustus, who was awarded it in 27 B.C. for saving the lives of citizens by ending the series of civil wars.
RB86122. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I 37, BMCRE I 38, Cohen I 24, BnF II 50, Hunter I 15, SRCV I -, VF, attractively centered on a broad flan, brass and tan contrasts, weight 27.910 g, maximum diameter 35.7 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 37 - 38 A.D.; obverse C CAESAR AVG GERMANICVS PON M TR POT, laureate head left; reverse S P Q R / P P / OB CIVES / SERVATOS in four lines within Corona Civica oak wreath; rare; $1710.00 (€1453.50)
 


Caligula, 16 March 37 - 24 January 41 A.D.

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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 flame was kept alive by Vestal Virgins.
RB86491. Copper as, RIC I 38, Cohen I 27, BMCRE I 46, SRCV I 1803, aVF, well centered, porosity and tiny pitting, reverse center weakly struck, weight 11.208 g, maximum diameter 28.7 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 37 - 38 A.D.; obverse C CAESAR AVG GERMANICVS PON M TR POT, bare head left; reverse VESTA, Vesta enthroned left, patera extended in right, long scepter transverse in left, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field; $350.00 (€297.50)
 


Kingdom of Thrace, Rhoemetalces III, c. 38 - 46 A.D., Caligula Reverse

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Rhoemetalces III was the son of the King Rhescuporis II. He ruled the Odrysian kingdom of Thrace with his cousin-wife Pythodoris II as clients under the Romans from 38 to 46 A.D. They succeeded Pythodoris’ mother Tryphaena and her brother Rhoemetalces II. Rhoemetalces III was murdered in 46, by insurgents or on the orders of his wife. The subsequent fate of Pythodoris II is unknown and it seems they didn't have any children. Soon after his death, Thrace was incorporated into the Roman Empire as a province.
RP86500. Bronze AE 26, RPC I 1724; Youroukova 210; BMC Thrace p. 210, 2; SNG Cop -, aVF, centered, green patina, porous, weight 13.803 g, maximum diameter 25.7 mm, die axis 180o, uncertain Thracian mint, 38 - 41 B.C.; obverse BAΣIΛEYΣ POIMHTAΛKAΣ, diademed and draped bust of Rhoemetalkes right; reverse ΓAIΩ KAIΣAPI ΣEBAΣTΩ, laureate head of Caligula left; very rare; $250.00 (€212.50)
 


Germanicus, Caesar, died 10 October 19 A.D.

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Issued under Caligula in honor of his deceased father. Germanicus inflicted serious defeats on the barbarian tribes in Germania and recovered the legionary standards lost by Varus. He was to be Tiberius' successor but died of an unknown cause. His tremendous popularity helped his son Caligula obtain the throne after Tiberius died.
RB86493. Copper as, RIC I 35, BMCRE I 49, BnF XII 73, Hunter I 25, Cohen I 1, SRCV I 1821, F, well centered, weight 10.779 g, maximum diameter 28.7 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, struck under Caligula, 37 - 38 A.D.; obverse GERMANICVS CAESAR TI AVGVST F DIVI AVG N, bare head left; reverse C CAESAR AVG GERMANICVS PON M TR POT, legend around large S C (senatus consulto); $225.00 (€191.25)
 


Agrippa, Military Commander, Friend of Augustus, Grandfather of Caligula, Great-grandfather of Nero

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First commissioned by Marcus Agrippa during the reign of Augustus, the Pantheon was a temple dedicated to all the gods of ancient Rome. Hadrian rebuilt it in 126 A.D. The building is circular with a portico of large granite Corinthian columns (eight in the first rank and two groups of four behind) under a pediment. A rectangular vestibule links the porch to the rotunda, which is under a coffered concrete dome, with a central opening (oculus) to the sky. Almost two thousand years after it was built, the Pantheon's dome is still the world's largest unreinforced concrete dome. The height to the oculus and the diameter of the interior circle are the same, 43.3 meters (142 ft. It is one of the best-preserved of all Roman buildings. It has been in continuous use throughout its history, and since the 7th century, the Pantheon has been used as a Roman Catholic church dedicated to "St. Mary and the Martyrs" but informally known as "Santa Maria Rotonda." The square in front of the Pantheon is called Piazza della Rotonda.Pantheon on Wikipedia

RB86494. Copper as, RIC I Gaius 58; BMCRE II Tiberius 161 - 168; Cohen I 3, BnF II Caligula 77 - 97, SRCV I 1812, aVF, well centered, nice portrait, green patina, cleaning scratches, weight 10.583 g, maximum diameter 29.5 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, struck under his grandson Caligula, 38 A.D.; obverse M AGRIPPA L F COS III, head left wearing a rostral crown; reverse Neptune standing facing, head left, nude but for cloak draped over arms, dolphin in right hand, trident vertical in left hand, large S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field; $200.00 (€170.00)
 







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OBVERSE LEGENDS

CCAESARAVGPONMTRPOTIII
CCAESARAVGGERMANICVS
CCAESARAVGGERMANICVSPONMTRPOT
CCAESARAVGGERMPMTRPOT
CCAESARDIVIAVGPRONAVGPMTRPIIII
CCAESARDIVIAVGPRONAVGSC
CCAESARAVGPONMTRPOTIIICOSIII
CCAESARAVGGERMPMTRPOT


REFERENCES

American Numismatic Society (ANS) Collections Database Online - http://numismatics.org/search/search
Banti, A. & L. Simonetti. Corpus Nummorum Romanorum. (Florence, 1972-1979).
Burnett, A., M. Amandry & P. Ripollès. Roman Provincial Coinage I: From the death of Caesar to the death of Vitellius (44 BC-AD 69). (London, 1992 & suppl.).
Calicó, X. The Roman Avrei, Vol. One: From the Republic to Pertinax, 196 BC - 193 AD. (Barcelona, 2003).
Cayón, J. Los Sestercios del Imperio Romano, Vol. I: De Pompeyo Magno a Matidia (Del 81 a.C. al 117 d.C.). (Madrid, 1984).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappées sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 1: Pompey to Domitian. (Paris, 1880).
Giard, J-B. "Les emissions d'or et d'argent de Caligula dans l'atelier de Lyon" in RN 18 (1976), pp. 69-81.
Giard, J-B. Le monnayage de l'atelier de Lyon, des origines au règne de Caligula (43 avant J.-C. - 41 après J.-C.). (Wetteren, 1983).
Giard, J-B. Monnaies de L'Empire Romain II: De Tebère à Néron. Catalogue Bibliothèque nationale de France. (Paris, 1988).
Mattingly, H. & R. 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).
Sear, D. Roman Coins and Their Values, The Millennium Edition, Vol. One, The Republic and the Twelve Caesars 280 BC - AD 86. (London, 2000).
Sutherland, C. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. I, From 39 BC to AD 69. (London, 1984).
Toynbee, J. Roman medallions. ANSNS 5. (New York, 1944).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).

Catalog current as of Monday, December 11, 2017.
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Roman Coins of Caligula