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Home > Members' Coin Collection Galleries > David Atherton > Imperial Coinage of Domitian

Domitian RIC 03
AR Denarius, 3.13g
Rome mint, 81 AD
Obv: IMP CAESAR DOMITIANVS AVG; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: TR P COS VII; Seat, draped; above, triangular frame decorated with corn ears
RIC 3 (R). BMC 2. RSC 554a. BNC 2.
Acquired from Museum Surplus, July 2013.

Here we have a rather worn denarius of Domitian which may at first glance appear unremarkable, however, to me it is anything but that. Minted within the first few days of Domitian's reign, the reverse type is a carry-over from Titus' 'pulvinar' series. The mint had yet to develop unique or new reverse types for Domitian. Here we see a triangular frame above a chair, which is its only appearance in Domitian's 'pulvinar' series making this a rather rare coin. The early dating of the type can be confirmed by the spartan-like reverse titles that show Domitian simply as Tribunica Potestat for the first time and Consul for the seventh. Domitian was notorious for his adherence to the correct form of his titles, as clearly evident here. He would not advertise any titles that had yet to be bestowed. The absence of PM or P P is glaringly apparent.

A nice little coin that provides a neat glimpse into the workings of a mint and the mind of a new emperor.
File information
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47 KB
Date added:
Jul 08, 2013
500 x 250 pixels
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Mat  [Jul 08, 2013 at 06:57 PM]
Nice catch and coin!
Jay GT4  [Jul 08, 2013 at 08:17 PM]
Good eye!
quadrans  [Jul 09, 2013 at 02:58 AM]
Good pick up....
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