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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Roman Coins ▸ The Adoptive Emperors ▸ LucillaView Options:  |  |  | 

Lucilla, Augusta c. 164 - 182 A.D., wife of Lucius Verus

Lucilla was the daughter of Marcus Aurelius and Faustina II and was born in 149 A.D. She was married to the co-emperor Lucius Verus in 164 A.D and bore him several children. She was exiled then executed after being implicated in a conspiracy to assassinate her brother Commodus in 182 A.D.


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For Roman wives, piety often meant accepting neglect. It was not considered adultery for a Roman husband to have sex with slaves or unmarried women. The historian Spartianus wrote that after Lucilla complained, Lucius Verus reproached her: "Uxor enim dignitatis nomen est, non voluptatis" (Wife is the name of dignity, not bliss).
RB83576. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC III 1756, BMCRE IV 1161, Cohen III 54, Hunter II 27, SRCV II 5505, F, glossy dark sea-green patina, light corrosion on obverse, rough areas on reverse, squared tight flan, weight 19.43 g, maximum diameter 30.9 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 164 - 166 A.D.; obverse LVCILLAE AVG ANTONINI AVG F, draped bust right; reverse PIETAS, Pietas standing left, veiled, raising her right hand, perfume-box in left hand, flaming altar at feet on left, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field; $95.00 (€80.75)
 


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Lucina is the Roman name for the Greek goddess, Eileithyia, who was the protectress of midwives and who assisted during birth. She was later identified with Hera or Artemis. On Roman coins, Lucina is identified as an aspect of the goddess Juno associated with light and childbirth, during which she eased the pain and made sure all went well. Coins portraying Lucina may commemorate a birth in the Imperial family or that the help of the goddess had been invoked. She is usually portrayed with or holding children. A variety of objects may accompany her, sometimes a patera and scepter--attributes of Juno--or more commonly, a flower.
SH69929. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC III 1747, Cohen III 37, BMCRE 1154, Banti III 18, SRCV II 5504, VF, big attractive bronze!, weight 29.187 g, maximum diameter 31.2 mm, die axis 45o, Rome mint, c. 166 A.D.; obverse LVCILLAE AVG M ANTONINI AVG F, draped bust right; reverse IVNONI - LVCINAE, Juno seated left on throne with back, feet on footstool, flower in right, swaddled child cradled in left arm, S C (senatus consulto) in exergue; SOLD


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The story of Commodus and Lucilla in the movie Gladiator was not historically accurate but the characters were based, in part, on the real emperor and his sister. Lucilla did plot to assassinate her brother Commodus and the plot did fail. Commodus actually did fight as a gladiator. But Maximus, entirely fictional, was not there to save Lucilla. Commodus won every time. Lucilla was banished to Capri and executed a year later.
SH08499. Orichalcum sestertius, SRCV II 5501, RIC III 1746, Cohen III 35, VF, weight 24.04 g, maximum diameter 30.0 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 166 - 169 A.D.; obverse LVCILLA AVGVSTA, draped bust right; reverse IVNO S C, Juno seated left holding patera and scepter; reverse struck flat, very nice multi-color patina, excellent portrait; SOLD







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OBVERSE LEGENDS

LVCILLAAVGVSTA
LVCILLAEAVGANTONINIAVGF
LVCILLAEAVGVSTAE


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.S. 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 Saturday, December 16, 2017.
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Roman Coins of Lucilla