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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Roman Coins ▸ Crisis and Decline ▸ SaloninaView Options:  |  |  |   

Salonina, Augusta 254 - c. September 268 A.D., Wife of Gallienus

Salonina was the wife of emperor Gallienus. A very beautiful and intelligent woman, she was extremely loyal to her husband. Opinion is divided as to whether she was murdered in the purge of Gallienus family after his murder, or if she survived.


Salonina, Augusta 254 - c. September 268 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt

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Tyche (Greek for luck; the Roman equivalent was Fortuna) was the presiding tutelary deity that governed the fortune and prosperity of a city, its destiny. Increasingly during the Hellenistic period, cities had their own specific iconic version of Tyche, wearing a mural crown (a crown like the walls of the city).
SH66838. Billon tetradrachm, Dattari 5342; Geissen 2982; Kampmann-Ganschow 91.47; SRCV III 10716; BMC Alexandria p. 2266; Milne 4140, Choice aEF, weight 11.345 g, maximum diameter 23.7 mm, die axis 315o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 266 - 28 Aug 267 A.D.; obverse KOPNHΛIA CAΛWNEINA CEB, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in horizontal ridges and in plait looped below ear; reverse Tyche reclining left on couch, kalathos on head, rudder in right hand, LI∆ (year 14) above; $200.00 (€178.00)
 


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The animal appears to have the beard of a goat but on some examples branched antlers are clear. It is an odd deer.
RA84359. Billon antoninianus, Göbl MIR 725cc, Hunter IV S21, RSC IV 70, RIC V S16, SRCV III 10643, VF, well centered on a tight flan, porosity, weight 4.111 g, maximum diameter 21.0 mm, die axis 180o, 4th officina, Rome mint, 267 - 268 A.D.; obverse COR SALONINA AVG, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in ridges and in plait looped below ear up the back and top of head, thin crescent behind shoulders; reverse IVNONI CONS AVG (to Juno protector of the Empress), hind walking left, ∆ in exergue; $90.00 (€80.10)
 


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This type was struck during Salonina's lifetime, so the unusual reverse legend was not struck in memorial. There has been some fanciful speculation that "IN PACE," meaning "in peace," was a Christian phrase indicating the empress had converted to Christianity.
RS65817. Billon antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1231a, RIC V S60, RSC IV 20, Hunter III 25, Cunetio 1535, SRCV III 10626, gF, toned white metal, green encrustations, weight 2.153 g, maximum diameter 20.7 mm, die axis 180o, Mediolanum (Milan, Italy) mint, 266 - 267 A.D.; obverse SALONINA AVG, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in ridges and in plait looped below ear up the back of head, crescent behind shoulders; reverse AVGVSTA IN PACE (Augusta in peace), Pax seated left on throne without back, olive branch downward in right, long transverse scepter in right; rare; $80.00 (€71.20)
 


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Venus (Aphrodite) started the Trojan War with a golden apple. When she failed to receive a wedding invitation, she maliciously deposited a golden apple inscribed "For the fairest" on the banquet table. The goddesses argued who deserved this prize. It was determined the most handsome mortal in the world, a noble Trojan youth named Paris, would decide. Each of the three finalists offered Paris a bribe. Hera promised he would rule the world. Athena said she would make him victorious in battle. Aphrodite guaranteed the love of the most beautiful woman in the world. This was Helen, who was married to the king of Sparta. Paris awarded the golden apple to Aphrodite. Aphrodite enabled Paris to elope with Helen, Helen of Troy. Helen's husband raised a Greek army to retrieve his wife, starting the Trojan War.
RS65792. Silver antoninianus, Göbl MIR 904c, RSC IV 134 (Lyon), Hunter III S19 (Rome), Cunetio 735 (64 spec.), Elmer 98, SRCV III 10662, RIC V -, VF, toned, tight ragged flan, flan cracks, small encrustations, weight 3.028 g, maximum diameter 22.9 mm, die axis 45o, Cologne mint, 257 - 259 A.D.; obverse SALONINA AVG, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in ridges and in plait looped below ear up the back of head, crescent behind shoulders; reverse VENVS VICTRIX (victorious Venus), Venus standing right, viewed from behind, nude but for drapery at hips, buttocks exposed, leaning with left elbow on column, apple (or helmet?) in exerguetended right hand, transverse palm on far side in left; not in RIC; $75.00 (€66.75)
 


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This type was struck during Salonina's lifetime, so the unusual reverse legend was not struck in memorial. There has been some fanciful speculation that "IN PACE," meaning "in peace," was a Christian phrase indicating the empress had converted to Christianity.
RB65809. Billon antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1377e, RIC V S58, RSC IV 17, SRCV III 10626 var. (mint mark), Hunter IV S27 var. (obv. legend), aVF, slightly ragged flan, weight 3.539 g, maximum diameter 21.2 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Mediolanum (Milan, Italy) mint, 266 - 268 A.D.; obverse SALONINA AVG, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in ridges and in plait looped below ear up the back of head, crescent behind shoulders; reverse AVG IN PACE, Salonina seated left, olive-branch downward in right hand, long transverse scepter in left hand, MS in exergue; $70.00 (€62.30)
 


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The empire is history but Rome is still today, the Eternal City.

During the Early Middle Ages, the population fell to a mere 20,000, reducing the sprawling city to groups of inhabited buildings interspersed among large areas of ruins and vegetation.
RL74575. Billon antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1605c (7 spec.), RIC V J67; RSC IV 103, SRCV III 10651 var. (star or wreath above, uncertain Syrian mint), Hunter IV J35 ff. var. (same), VF, very broad flan, small flan crack, weight 2.817 g, maximum diameter 23.1 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 255 - 256 A.D.; obverse SALONINA AVG, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in horizontal ridges and in plait looped below ear up the back of head, thin crescent behind shoulders; reverse ROMAE AETERNAE (to eternal Rome), emperor on left standing right, receiving Victory from Roma, seated left, spear vertical behind in her left hand, grounded shield behind against her near side; $70.00 (€62.30)
 


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In Roman mythology, Aequitas was the minor goddess of fair trade and honest merchants. Aequitas was also the personification of the virtues equity and fairness of the emperor (Aequitas Augusti). The scales, a natural emblem of equity, express righteousness. The cornucopia signifies the prosperity which results from Aequitas and Aequitas Augusti.
RA57189. Billon antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1648d, Hunter IV S34, RSC IV 4, RIC V S87, SRCV III 10625, VF, bold full circle obverse strike on a broad flan, weight 4.068 g, maximum diameter 22.4 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 266 - 267 A.D.; obverse SALONINA AVG, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in horizontal ridges and in plait looped below ear up the back of head, bust resting on thin crescent; reverse AEQVITAS AVG (equity of the emperor), Aequitas standing half left, scales in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, crescent upper left, VIIC• (COS VII) in exergue; $60.00 (€53.40)
 


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Vesta began as a household spirit and was later 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.
RS73646. Silver antoninianus, Göbl MIR 859b (Viminacium), RIC V J39 (Rome), RSC IV 137, Hunter IV J1 (Rome), SRCV III 10663 (Rome), VF, broad flan, good metal for the reign, slightly off-center, some porosity, flan crack, weight 4.034 g, maximum diameter 23.7 mm, die axis 225o, Rome mint, c. 256 - 257 A.D.; obverse CORN SALONINA AVG, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in ridges and plait looped below ear and up the back of head, thin crescent behind shoulders; reverse VESTA, Vesta standing left, patera in right hand, long transverse scepter in left hand; ex Harlan J Berk; $60.00 (€53.40)
 


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It was Sulla who in a dream first saw Venus as Venus Victrix (victorious Venus), with the weapons of Mars. He made her to his personal patroness. Pompey was inaugurating the cult of Venus Victrix in Rome. In the night before the battle of Pharsalus 48 B.C. Pompey was dreaming of Venus Victrix - seemingly a lucky sign -, whereas Caesar was sacrificing to Venus Genetrix, but issued as watchword 'Venus Victrix', and defeated Pompey!
BB65805. Billon antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1313r, RSC IV 127, Hunter IV - (p. lxxiiii), cf. RIC V S67 (MS in ex.), SRCV III 10659 (same), Cunetio 1768 (same), EF, nice portrait, toned, tight flan, porous, weight 3.055 g, maximum diameter 19.5 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Mediolanum (Milan, Italy) mint, c. 265 - 267 A.D.; obverse SALONINA AVG, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in ridges and in plait looped below ear up the back of head, crescent behind shoulders; reverse VENVS VICT (victorious Venus), Venus standing half left, helmet in right hand, transverse spear in left hand, left elbow resting on grounded shield beside her; not in RIC; $50.00 (€44.50)
 


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Juno was the chief female divinity in the Roman pantheon. She was the wife of Jupiter and a member of the Capitoline Triad. She had many different aspects, such as Juno Moneta, Juno Sospita and Juno Lucina, but here she is depicted as Juno Regina, "Juno the Queen." Juno is usually shown holding a patera, scepter or a statuette of Athena, and is often accompanied by a peacock.
RS65807. Billon antoninianus, RIC V p. 200, 92; RSC IV 67b; SRCV III 10641; Göbl MIR 1619m var. (crescent vice star), VF, well centered, porous, reverse legend weak, weight 3.145 g, maximum diameter 21.8 mm, die axis 180o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 263 - 264 A.D.; obverse SALONINA AVG, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in horizontal ridges and in plait looped below ear up the back of head, bust resting on thin crescent; reverse IVNO REGINA, Juno standing left, patera in right hand, long scepter vertical in left hand, peacock left at feet on left, star upper left; $45.00 (€40.05)
 




  



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OBVERSE LEGENDS

CORNELIASALONINAAVGVSTA
CORNELIASALONINAAVG
CORNELSALONINAAVG
CORNSALONINAAVG
CORSALONINA
CORSALONINAAVG
SALONINAAVG


REFERENCES

Banti, A. and L. Simonetti. Corpus Nummorum Romanorum. (Florence, 1972-1979).
Besly, E. and R. Bland. The Cunetio Treasure: Roman Coinage of the Third Century AD. (London, 1983).
Calicó, X. The Roman Avrei, Vol. Two: From Didius Julianus to Constantius I, 193 AD - 335 AD. (Barcelona, 2003).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappées sous l'Empire Romain, Volume 5: Gordian I to Valerian II. (Paris, 1885).
Elmer, G. "Die Münzprägung der gallischen Kaiser von Postumus bis Tetricus in Köln, Trier und Mailand." in Bonner Jahrbücher 146 (1941).
Göbl, R. et al. Moneta Imperii Romani, Band 35: Die Münzprägung des Kaiser Valerianus I/Gallienus/Saloninus (253/268), Regalianus (260) un Macrianus/Quietus (260/262). (Vienna, 2000).
Mattingly, H., Sydenham and Webb. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol V, Part I, Valerian to Florian. (London, 1927).
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, University of Glasgow, Vol. IV. Valerian I to Allectus. (Oxford, 1978).
Seaby, H.A. & D.R. Sear. Roman Silver Coins, Volume IV, Gordian III to Postumus. (London, 1982).
Sear, D.R. Roman Coins and Their Values, Volume Three, The Accession of Maximinus I to the Death of Carinus AD 235 - AD 285. (London, 2005).
Schaad, D. & J. Lafaurie. Le trésor d'Eauze. (Toulouse, 1992). Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).

Catalog current as of Sunday, April 30, 2017.
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Roman Coins of Salonina