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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Roman Coins ▸ The Adoptive Emperors ▸ Marcus AureliusView Options:  |  |  | 

Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D.

Marcus Aurelius was recognized by Hadrian as a fine and capable youth and betrothed to the daughter of Aelius. Antoninus Pius adopted him and in 145 A.D. he married Antoninus' daughter, Faustina II. In 161 A.D., he succeeded Antoninus as Augustus, immediately proclaiming Lucius Verus his co-emperor. Although known for his adherence to the philosophy of Stoicism and as a naturally peaceful man, Marcus' reign was disturbed by war with Parthia, plague and then a long, hard war along the Danube frontier. He died on March 17th, 180 A.D. and was deified by the senate soon after.


Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D.

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Posthumous commemorative struck by Marcus Aurelius' son, Commodus.
RS85773. Silver denarius, Szaivert MIR 18 p. 142, 482/4; RIC III C273 (S) var., RSC II 91 var., BMCRE IV C20 692 var. , Hunter II 3 var., SRCV II 5974 (all var. no wreath), Choice VF, well centered, attractive style, light tone, edge cracks, weight 2.921 g, maximum diameter 18.4 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, posthumous, 180 A.D.; obverse DIVVS M ANTONINVS PIVS, bare head right; reverse CONSECRATIO, eagle standing right on globe, head left, wreath in beak; rare variety; $200.00 (€170.00)
 


Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D.

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In 166, the war with Parthia was successfully ended. The Parthians left Armenia and eastern Mesopotamia, which both become Roman protectorates.
RS86786. Silver denarius, RIC III 159, RSC II 435, BMCRE IV 401 403, Szaivert MIR 140, SRCV II 4915, gVF, excellent portrait, toned, radiating flow lines, flan flaw on obverse (neck), obverse slightly off center, reverse struck with worn die, weight 3.531 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, summer - Dec 166 A.D.; obverse M ANTONINVS AVG ARM PARTH MAX, laureate head right; reverse TR P XX IMP IIII COS III, Pax standing left, branch in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, PAX in exergue; $200.00 (€170.00)
 


Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D.

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Honos was the god of chivalry, honor and military justice. He was usually depicted in art with a spear and a cornucopia. He was sometimes identified with Virtus.
RS87051. Silver denarius, RIC III AP 426; BMCRE IV p. 73, 509; RSC II 100; SRCV II 4782, Hunter II -, gVF, choice obverse, superb portrait, golden toning, reverse legend weak, edge cracks, weight 3.356 g, maximum diameter 18.4 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, as caesar, Sep - Dec 144 A.D.; obverse AVRELIVS CAESAR AVG PII F, bare head right; reverse COS DES II (Consul once [in 140], selected for a second time [to begin 1 Jan 145]), Honos standing left, togate, head left, branch in right hand, cornucopia in left; Numismatik Naumann, auction 62, lot 1134 (part of); scarce; $185.00 (€157.25)
 


Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D.

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In 164, Marcus Aurelius gave his daughter Lucilla in marriage to his co-emperor Lucius Verus.
RS85768. Silver denarius, RIC III 112, RSC II 852c, BMCRE IV 257, Hunter II 16, SRCV II -, Choice VF, attractive portrait, toned, radiating flow lines, broad flan, small edge cracks, weight 3.517 g, maximum diameter 18.1 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, Dec 163 - Dec 164 A.D.; obverse M ANTONINVS AVG IMP II, laureate head right; reverse TR P XVIII COS III, Felicitas seated left on curule chair, long grounded caduceus vertical behind in right hand, reversed cornucopia in right hand; $160.00 (€136.00)
 


Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D.

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Virtus (courage, valor) is depicted as a helmeted soldier, often a female, in armor holding a spear, parazonium, victory or a shield. Virtus and Mars can usually be distinguished since Mars is usually shown nude and Virtus is always shown clothed.
RS85769. Silver denarius, RIC III AP480e, RSC II 747a, BMCRE IV AP963, Strack III AP357, SRCV II 4796, Hunter II -, VF, well centered, radiating flow lines, die wear, a few marks, mild corrosion, edge cracks, weight 3.129 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, as caesar, Dec 158 - Dec 159 A.D.; obverse AVRELIVS CAES AVG PII F (Aurelius Caesar, dutiful son of Emperor Antonius), bare head right; reverse TR POT XIII COS II (holder of Tribunitian power for 13 years, consul 2 times), Virtus standing right, foot on helmet, resting on spear in right hand, parazonium in left; $160.00 (€136.00)
 


Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D.

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RIC III lists this type as common, but this is the first example handled by Forum, there are none on Coin Archives Wildwinds, Tantalus, or Coin Project. We found only two examples online: ANS 1956.127.872 and British Museum 1937.0607.14.
RS85770. Silver denarius, BMCRE II 604, RIC III 299, RSC II 314, Szaivert MIR 279, SRCV I 4907, Hunter II -, VF, nice portrait, well centered, radiating flow lines, small edge cracks, weight 3.315 g, maximum diameter 18.9 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, Jun - Dec 174 A.D.; obverse M ANTONINVS AVG TR P XXVIII, laureate head right; reverse IMP VII COS III, Mars marching right, nude but for helmet and cloak tied on belt at waist, transverse spear in right hand, trophy of arms in left hand over left shoulder; scarce; $160.00 (€136.00)
 


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In 174, Marcus Aurelius officially conferred the title Fulminata (Thundering) to the Legio XII Fulminata.
RS87060. Silver denarius, RIC III 289, RSC II 298, BMCRE IV 596, Hunter II 62 var. (draped and cuirassed), SRCV II 4911 var. (captive seated left), VF, excellent portrait, some mint luster, radiating flow lines, a few light scratches and marks, obverse slightly off center, small edge cracks, weight 3.123 g, maximum diameter 19.3 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, Dec 173 - Jun 174 A.D.; obverse M ANTONINVS AVG TR P XXVIII, laureate head right; reverse IMP VI COS III, captive seated right at foot of trophy of captured arms, arms (spear and curved sword?) on the ground to right; ex Numismatik Naumann, auction 62, lot 1134 (part of); $160.00 (€136.00)
 


Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D.

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Posthumous commemorative struck by Marcus Aurelius' son, Commodus. The interesting commemorative portrait appears to have eyes closed. This is probably an unintentional appearance but it is not the first time we have had one looking like this.
RS85772. Silver denarius, RIC III C275, RSC II 97, MIR 18 487-4/10, Hunter II 6, BMCRE IV C27, SRCV II 5979, Choice VF, well centered, light toning, edge cracks, weight 3.182 g, maximum diameter 18.2 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, posthumous, c. 180 A.D.; obverse DIVVS M ANTONINVS PIVS, bare head right; reverse CONSECRATIO, decorated and garlanded four-tier funeral pyre surmounted by quadriga; $130.00 (€110.50)
 


Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D.

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In 173, Avidius Cassius, the governor of Syria, crushed an insurrection of shepherds known as the boukoloi.
RS87050. Silver denarius, RIC III 278, RSC II 297, BMCRE IV 578, Hunter II -, SRCV II -, VF, well centered, radiating flow lines, die wear, edge cracks, weight 3.307 g, maximum diameter 19.4 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, Dec 172 - Dec 173 A.D.; obverse M ANTONINVS AVG TR P XXVIII, laureate head right; reverse IMP VI COS III, captive seated right at foot of trophy of captured arms, arms (spear and bow?) on the ground to right; ex Numismatik Naumann, auction 62, lot 1134 (part of); $130.00 (€110.50)
 


Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D.

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In 160 A.D., Rome first started commercial manufacturing of soap. It was made with grease, lime and ashes. The earliest evidence of man using soap dates around 2800 B.C. The first soap makers were Babylonians, Mesopotamians, Egyptians, and later Greeks and Romans. They all made soap by mixing fat, oils and salts. Some early Roman soap included urine as an ingredient. Soap wasn't used for bathing or personal hygiene but was used for cleaning cooking utensils or goods. It may have been used for medicinal purposes.
RS86815. Silver denarius, RIC III AP483, RSC II 762; BMCRE IV p. 149, AP998; Hunter II, p. 281, 28; SRCV II 4797, VF, excellent centering, toned, small encrustations, slight porosity, edge cracks, weight 3.089 g, maximum diameter 17.6 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, as caesar, 159 - 160 A.D.; obverse AVRELIVS CAES AVG PII F, bearded bare head right; reverse TR POT XIIII COS II, Minerva advancing right, helmeted, draped, wearing aegis, brandishing spear in right hand, round shield on left forearm; ex Beast Coins; $125.00 (€106.25)
 







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OBVERSE LEGENDS

ANTONINVSAVG
ANTONINVSAVGARMENIACVS
AVRELIVSCAESANTONAVGPIIF
AVRELIVSCAESARANTONINIAVGPIIFIL
AVRELIVSCAESARAVGPIIF
AVRELIVSCAESARAVGPIIFCOS
AVRELIVSCAESARAVGPIIFIL
AVRELIVSCAESARAVGPIIFCOS
AVRELIVSCAESAVGPIIF
AVRELIVSCAESAVGPIIFCOS
AVRELIVSCAESAVGPIIFCOSDES
DIVOMARCO
DIVOMARCOANTONINO
DIVVSMANTONINVSPIVS
IMPCAESMAVRELANTONINVSAVG
IMPCAESMAVRELANTONINVSAVGPM
IMPMANTONINVSAVG
IMPMANTONINVSAVGTRPXXV
IMPMAVRELANTONINVSAVG
MANTONINVSAVG
MANTONINVSAVGARMENIACVS
MANTONINVSAVGARMENPM
MANTONINVSAVGARMPARTHMAX
MANTONINVSAVGGERMSARM
MANTONINVSAVGGERMSARMATICVS
MANTONINVSAVGGERMSARMMAX
MANTONINVSAVGGERMSARMTRPXXXI
MANTONINVSAVGGERMSARMTRPXXXPP
MANTONINVSAVGGERMTRPXXIX
MANTONINVSAVGIMPII
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXX
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXIII
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXIIII
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXV
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXVI
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXVII
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXVIII
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXIX
MAVRELANTONINVSAVG
MAVRELANTONINVSAVGARMENIACVSPM
MAVRELANTONINVSAVGARMPARTHMAX
MAVRELANTONINVSAVGTRPXXXIII
MAVRELIVSCAESARANTONINIAVGPIIF
MAVRELIVSCAESARAVGPIIF


REFERENCES

Banti, A. & L. Simonetti. Corpus Nummorum Romanorum. (Florence, 1972-1979).
Calicó, E. The Roman Avrei, Vol. I: From the Republic to Pertinax, 196 BC - 193 AD. (Barcelona, 2003).
Cayón, J. Los Sestercios del Imperio Romano, Vol. III: De Marco Aurelio a Caracalla (Del 161 d.C. al 217 d.C.). (Madrid, 1984).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappées sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 3: Marcus Aurelius to Clodius Albinus. (Paris, 1883).
Mattingly, H. & E. Sydenham. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. III: Antoninus Pius to Commodus. (London, 1930).
Mattingly, H. & R. Carson. Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum, Vol. 4: Antoninus Pius to Commodus. (London, 1940).
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet. II. Trajan to Commodus (London, 1971).
Szaivert, W. Die Münzprägung der Kaiser Marcus Aurelius, Lucius Verus un Commodus (161-192). (Wien, 1984).
Seaby, H. & R. Loosley. Roman Silver Coins, Vol. II: Tiberius to Commodus. (London, 1979).
Sear, D. Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. II: The Accession of Nerva to the Overthrow of the Severan Dynasty AD 96 - AD 235. (London, 2002).
Strack, P. Untersuchungen zur römischen Reichsprägung des zweiten Jahrhunderts, Teil III: Die Reichsprägung zur Zeit Antoninus Pius. (Stuttgart, 1937).
Toynbee, J. Roman medallions. ANSNS 5. (New York, 1944).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).

Catalog current as of Friday, May 25, 2018.
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Roman Coins of Marcus Aurelius