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

Vespasian RIC-544
AR Denarius, 3.20g
Rome Mint, 73 AD
Obv: IMP CAES VESP AVG CENS; Head of Vespasian, laureate, r.
Rev: PONTIF MAXIM; Nemesis adv. r., holding caduceus over snake
RIC 544 (R). BMC 97. RSC 385. BNC 85.

The reverse of course is a direct copy from a denarius of Claudius. Curtis Clay has proposed that many of these types were recycled because Vespasian melted down many older denarii and minted these older reverse types to replace them. It would be interesting to know why certain types were chosen and others forgotten about. Did Nemesis hold a special meaning to the Flavians?

This type was a difficult one for me to track down!

Forgive the dodgy dealer photo.
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Filename:vespasian_nemesis1.JPG
Album name:David Atherton / Imperial Coinage of Vespasian
File Size:71 KB
Date added:Jun 04, 2009
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URL:http://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-43548
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rexesq  [May 31, 2011 at 12:31 PM]
Very interesting reverse, I much like it. Truly an amazing collection you have.... World Class I should say.
Lucas H  [Dec 03, 2012 at 12:56 PM]
I'll deferr to Clay for theories, but it could be that the Flavians wanted to follow certain emperors-Claudius, avoiding others-Nero, and it didn't have to do with the reverse, but the original issuer. This isnt a great answer however, as many of the Flavian types harkened to reverses from the Republic as well however.
David Atherton  [Dec 03, 2012 at 11:56 PM]
Certainly Vespasian was reviving types of fondly remembered individuals and types which connected him to Augustus.