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Vespasian Imperial Coins


V1424_R3.jpg

Titus Flavius Vespasianus - Augustus 69-79 AD

Imperial coins are arranged by metal according to the new RIC II Part 1.

References cited:
RIC - The Roman Imperial Coinage II Part 1 - Carradice and Buttrey
BMC - Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum II - Mattingly
RSC - Roman Silver Coins II - Seaby
RPC - Roman Provincial Coinage II - Burnett, Amandry, Carradice

RIC frequency ratings -
R3 unique
R2 very few examples known
R rare
C common
C2 very common
C3 extremely common

177 files, last one added on Nov 13, 2018

Titus Imperial Coins


titus dolphin rev.JPG

Titus Flavius Vespasianus - Caesar 69-79 AD, Augustus 79-81 AD

Imperial coins are arranged by metal according to the new RIC II Part 1.

References cited:
RIC - The Roman Imperial Coinage II Part 1 - Carradice and Buttrey
BMC - Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum II - Mattingly
RSC - Roman Silver Coins II - Seaby
RPC - Roman Provincial Coinage II - Burnett, Amandry, Carradice

RIC frequency ratings -
R3 unique
R2 very few examples known
R rare
C common
C2 very common
C3 extremely common

124 files, last one added on Oct 09, 2018

Domitian Imperial Coins


D183.jpg

Titus Flavius Domitianus - Caesar 69-81 AD, Augustus 81–96 AD

Imperial coins are arranged by metal according to the new RIC II Part 1.

References cited:
RIC - The Roman Imperial Coinage II Part 1 - Carradice and Buttrey
BMC - Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum II - Mattingly
RSC - Roman Silver Coins II - Seaby
RPC - Roman Provincial Coinage II - Burnett, Amandry, Carradice

RIC frequency ratings -
R3 unique
R2 very few examples known
R rare
C common
C2 very common
C3 extremely common

Common Minerva Types:
M1 Minerva advancing right, brandishing spear
M2 Minerva advancing right, brandishing spear, on capital of rostral column, accompanied by owl
M3 Minerva standing, facing left, with thunderbolt and spear and shield behind her feet
M4 Minerva standing left with spear

208 files, last one added on Oct 16, 2018

Julia Titi Imperial Coins


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Flavia Julia Titi - Augusta 80-91 AD

Imperial coins are arranged by metal according to the new RIC II Part 1.

References cited:
RIC - The Roman Imperial Coinage II Part 1 - Carradice and Buttrey
BMC - Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum II - Mattingly
RSC - Roman Silver Coins II - Seaby
RPC - Roman Provincial Coinage II - Burnett, Amandry, Carradice

RIC frequency ratings -
R3 unique
R2 very few examples known
R rare
C common
C2 very common
C3 extremely common

3 files, last one added on Aug 24, 2017

Domitia Imperial Coins


D847.jpg

Domitia Longina - Augusta 81-96 AD

Imperial coins are arranged by metal according to the new RIC II Part 1.

References cited:
RIC - The Roman Imperial Coinage II Part 1 - Carradice and Buttrey
BMC - Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum II - Mattingly
RSC - Roman Silver Coins II - Seaby
RPC - Roman Provincial Coinage II - Burnett, Amandry, Carradice

RIC frequency ratings -
R3 unique
R2 very few examples known
R rare
C common
C2 very common
C3 extremely common

1 files, last one added on Jul 25, 2018

Flavian Provincial Coins


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Flavian Dynasty 69-96 AD

Provincial coins are arranged according to RPC II

Reference cited: RPC - Roman Provincial Coinage II - Burnett, Amandry, Carradice

RPC frequency is determined by the number of specimens in the 'core collections'

Core collections:
Berlin, Staatliche Museen
Cambridge, Fitzwilliam Museum
Copenhagen, Nationalmuseet
Glasgow, Hunterian Museum
London, British Museum
Munich, Staatliche Münzsammlung
New York, American Numismatic Society
Oxford, Ashmolean Museum
Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale de France
Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum

68 files, last one added on Nov 06, 2018

6 albums on 1 page(s)

Last additions - David Atherton's Gallery
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Æ Vespasian RIC-89723 viewsÆ As, 9.85g
Rome mint, 76 AD
RIC 897 (R). BMC p. 169 note.
Obv: IMP CAESAR VESP AVG COS VII; Head of Vespasian, laureate, r.
Rev: VICTORIA AVGVST; S C in field; Victory stg. r. on prow, with wreath and palm
Ex eBay, 30 October 2018.

This As is part of a small bronze issue struck during the middle part of the Vespasian's reign and features the perennial favourite reverse of Victory on prow, a type more commonly found on the As issues at Rome. Unlike the VICTORIA NAVALIS type which likely celebrated a minor naval victory from the Jewish War, this Victory can be viewed in more generic terms. A similar type was also struck in silver on the denarii the previous year.

Strong middle-period portrait with pleasing dark chocolate patina.
4 commentsDavid AthertonNov 13, 2018
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Æ Vespasian-RIC-123357 viewsÆ As, 9.19g
Lyon mint, 77-78 AD
RIC 1233 (C). BMC 845.
Obv: IMP CAES VESPASIAN AVG COS VIII P P; Head of Vespasian, laureate, r.
Rev: IVDAEA CAPTA; S C in exergue; Palm tree; to r., Judaea std. r.; to l. of tree, arms
Acquired from Zuzim, October 2018.

The amount of propaganda the Flavian regime was able to squeeze out of the Jewish War is astounding. Here we have an As struck seven or eight years after the fall of Jerusalem still touting the Jewish defeat. It was the singular event that more than anything else gave the dynasty its prestige. It would have been unseemly to celebrate the defeat of fellow Romans after the end of the Civil War, but quite appropriate to do so over an eastern people, despite the fact they were within the boundaries of the Roman empire. This As was struck in a fairly large issue from the Lyon mint, presumably to address a shortage of bronze coinage in the western provinces late in Vespasian's reign.

Distinctive Lyon portrait, struck on a bent flan.
5 commentsDavid AthertonNov 08, 2018
RPC1389.jpg
RPC-1389-Vespasian 25 viewsÆ25, 9.00g
Apamea, Phrygia mint, Plancius Varus, magistrate
RPC 1389 (15 spec.).
Obv: AYTOKPOTΩP KAIΣAP ΣΕΒΑΣΤΟΣ OYEΣΠΑΣIANOΣ; Head of Vespasian, laureate, r,
Rev: EΠΙ ΠΛΑNKIOY OYAPOY KOINON ΦPYΓIAΣ ΑΠΑMEIΣ; bundle of five corn-ears
Acquired from Tom Vossen, October 2018.

The important crossroads city of Apamea produced only one issue of coins during the Flavian era for the Koinon of Phrygia. M. Dräger has proposed that the issue could have been struck to help finance the Koinon's recovery after an earthquake, citing an ambiguous remark in Suetonius about Vespasian's civic generosity - 'he restored to a better condition very many states throughout the whole world that had been afflicted by earthquakes or fire' (Vesp. 17). It is quite possible that such a disaster occurred during Vespasian's reign in Phrygia since the region is prone to frequent seismic activity. Earthquakes are known to have previously struck the area in 53 and 60 AD and Strabo speaks of such a disaster which rocked the region during the Mithridatic Wars. The issue is undated, but names Plancius Varus, who perhaps is the same person that is recorded as a Flavian legate in Asia during the reign of Vespasian. Varus is thought to have died by 81. The type of five bundled corn-ears echoes a similar reverse of two bundled corn-ears struck by the city under Augustus.

Nice green patina featuring a severe portrait of Vespasian.
5 commentsDavid AthertonNov 06, 2018
V1556.jpg
Vespasian-RIC-155649 viewsAR Denarius, 3.42g
Antioch mint, 72-73 AD
RIC 1556 (R3). BMC - . RSC - . RPC - .
Obv: IMP CAES VESP AVG P M COS IIII; Head of Vespasian, laureate, r.
Rev: VESTA; Vesta stg. l., with simpulum and sceptre
Ex Numismatic Naumann 70, 7 October 2018, lot 411.

Second known example of the Antioch RIC group 5 Vesta. A double die match with the other published specimen, CNG 61, 25 September 2002, lot 1689, and an obverse die match with the extremely rare AVGVR TRI POT and VICTORIA AVGVSTI types from the same issue. All of these copy common contemporaneous reverse types from Rome.

Slightly off centre in good Antiochene style.
5 commentsDavid AthertonOct 30, 2018
V759a.jpg
Æ Vespasian RIC-75960 viewsÆ Dupondius, 14.46g
Rome mint, 74 AD
RIC 759 (C). BMC p. 219 note. RPC 1983 (6 spec.).
Obv: IMP CAESAR VESPASIANVS AVG; Head of Vespasian, laureate, l.
Rev: PON•MAX•TR•POT•P•P•COS•V CENS; Winged caduceus between crossed cornuacopiae
Ex eBay, 16 October 2018. Ex Klassische Münzen.

Traditionally, the issue this rather strange dupondius is from has been attributed to various different mints over the years. Ted Buttrey writing in the RIC II.1 Addenda commented extensively on it. Because both the Addenda has yet to see the light of day and T. Buttrey's thoughts on the subject are important (and indeed likely correct), I have largely quoted it in full here with some minor editing.

'RIC 756-767 are irregular Dupondii, which should be taken together with Asses, semisses and quadrantes (RIC 1564-1581), forming together a single extraordinary issue in four denominations, distinct in typology and metal, as well as overall character from the regular coinage of the year. Although Eastern in aspect and reverse type, the circulation area of the dupondii is almost exclusively Gaul, Germany, Italy – i.e. the West, with scarcely any penetration of the East. Finds of the smaller denominations are rarely attested anywhere, East or West. The Eastern finds appear to be simply the débris of Mediterranean circulation.

Previously the series had been attributed to Commagene (BMCRE II, pp.217-222), then as a likelihood to Antioch (e.g. RPC II 1982-2005). The correct attribution to Rome is proved by mules of the dupondii with regular issues (Buttrey, “Vespasian’s Roman Orichalcum: An Unrecognized Celebratory Coinage” in David M. Jacobson and Nikos Kokkinos, Judaea and Rome in Coins, 65 CBE – 135 CE (2012). The series had nothing to do with Syria or with the East at all, yet it was purposefully designed to appear non-Roman: the suppression of the traditional reverse sub-inscription S C throughout; the suppression of the radiate crown of the Dupondius; the shifting of the consular dating from the obv. to the rev.; the striking of all four denominations in orichalcum; and most obviously the selection of rev. dies which reek of the East.

There is nothing like this series in the whole of Roman imperial coinage. It is a deliberate act of Orientalism, imposing the flavour of the East on a Western coinage. The key to its understanding is the reverse type of the dupondius, two crossed cornuacopiae with a winged caduceus between. It replicates the type of an obscure issue of the Galilean city of Sepphoris, an issue which had been, astonishingly, signed by Vespasian himself (ΕΠΙ ΟΥΕCΠΑCΙΑΝΟΥ, “on the authority of…”) when on duty there in the last days of Nero. The dupondius-sized bronze was accompanied by a half-unit with the type of a large, central S C – again signed by Vespasian, and now imitated on the As of the orichalcum series with the wreath of the As of Antioch (RPC I 4849-50).
The whole of this series memorializes not Vespasian the conquering general (IVDAEA CAPTA, VICTORIA AVGVSTI), but the man. His re-use of earlier coin types is well-known; here he re-uses his own, harking back to his career just prior to his final success in seizing the empire. And the series was struck in 74 A.D., co-terminous with the celebration of Vespasian’s first quinquennium.'

The coin itself is a superb example in very fine style. Beautiful dark golden patina with highlights of emerald green.
8 commentsDavid AthertonOct 23, 2018
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Domitian RIC 1545 viewsAR Denarius, 3.10g
Rome mint, 81 AD
RIC 15 (R2). BMC - . RSC - .
Obv: IMP CAES DOMITIANVS AVG P M; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: P P COS VII DES VIII; Seat, draped; above, semicircular frame decorated with corn ears
Ex Savoca Blue 10, 30 September 2018, lot 1212.

The rapidity in which Domitian's first denarius issues of 81 came one after another hint that he was in a great hurry to strike coins as Augustus after Titus' death in mid September 81 AD, presumably for a legionary donative. Dio records that Domitian hastened to the praetorian camp to 'receive the title and authority of the emperor' and promised the soldiers the same bounty Titus had provided. The Roman mint immediately began striking coins for the new emperor. This denarius was struck before Domitian had been awarded the power of the tribunate (TR P). Perhaps it may have taken a few days for the Senate to award the power of the tribunate to Domitian because they had assembled at the small town of Reate where Titus had died and needed to be in Rome in order to vote him the right. Although this Group 2 denarius is not part of Domitian's first RIC issue, it is very likely to have been struck within the first few weeks of him assuming the purple. RIC notes the chronology is not precise with these issues from 81 and they are grouped only for 'convenience'. Judging by the rarity of the Group 2 denarii they could not have been struck for any great length of time.

The type of draped seat with semi circular frame is a carry-over 'pulvinaria' type from Titus, possibly originally struck in connection with the Colosseum's opening games' religious ceremonies. Domitian's 'pulvinaria' coins are a stop-gap issue struck until proper reverse types were designed for the new reign in early 82 when the mint and coinage were overhauled.

Good early style portrait, unsurprisingly reminiscent of those struck for him as Caesar under Titus.
4 commentsDavid AthertonOct 16, 2018
T168sm.jpg
Æ Titus RIC-16844 viewsÆ Sestertius, 23.01g
Rome mint, 80-81 AD
RIC 168 (C2). BMC 168.
Obv: IMP T CAES VESP AVG P M TR P P P COS VIII; Head of Titus, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: S C in field; Spes stg. l., with flower
Ex Felicitas-Perpetua, eBay, 23 September 2018.

Spes is a common reverse type under Vespasian, connected to future dynastic hope and harmony. It continued to be struck by Titus and can be viewed as his hope for the future with his chosen heir Domitian. As Mattingly put it: '...the recurring types of Spes suggests that Titus gave Domitian full due as heir to the throne.' Suetonious would have us believe this public fraternal affection was a sham and Domitian did everything he could to plot against Titus. Dio goes so far as to say Domitian hastened Titus death by having him packed in ice! All of this can be dismissed as nothing more than post Domitianic gossip intended to blacken Domitian's name. The Flavian historian Brian Jones speculates the brother's relationship was one of 'mutual indifference and ignorance' due to their age and personality differences. Regardless, as the numismatic evidence shows, Titus looked upon Domitian as his legitimate heir until his natural death in mid September 81.

The reverse is quite worn, but no matter, the portrait makes up for any of the reverse's deficiencies. A wonderful coin in hand!
4 commentsDavid AthertonOct 09, 2018
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Æ Vespasian RIC-73059 viewsÆ As, 10.91g
Rome mint, 74 AD
RIC 730 (C). BMC 703.
Obv: IMP CAESAR VESP AVG COS V CENS; Head of Vespasian, laureate, r.
Rev: S C in field; Spes stg. l., with flower
Acquired from Roman Coin Shop, September 2018. Ex Künker eLive Auction 40, 18 May 2016, lot 7566.

Spes is a common reverse type struck repeatedly throughout the Flavian era, she is mostly associated with Domitian in both silver and bronze. Here Spes represents Vespasian's hope for a happy dynastic future. The depiction of Spes raising skirt and holding a flower likely copies a familiar cult statue of the goddess.

Bold portrait in good metal. A very attractive coin in hand.
4 commentsDavid AthertonOct 02, 2018
D221.jpg
Æ Domitian RIC-22130 viewsÆ As, 10.23g
Rome mint, 84 AD
RIC 221 (C2). BMC 288
Obv: IMP CAES DOMITIAN AVG GERM COS X; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: MONETA AVGVST; S C in field; Moneta stg. l., with scales and cornucopiae
Acquired from Marti Classical Numismatics, September 2018.

In 82 Domitian reformed the coinage by increasing the weight of the gold and fineness of the silver. Production of the bronze coinage was suspended while the mint was reorganised and resumed in 84 with new reverse types. Appropriately, one of the first types struck on the bronze after the coinage reform was Moneta, 'mint goddess of the emperor'. Mattingly believes Moneta in this context can be seen as symbolising Domitian's control of the mint and as paymaster to the empire. A fitting reverse design for an emperor who cared so much for his coinage.

Superb portrait and nice brown patina.
1 commentsDavid AthertonSep 25, 2018
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Æ Titus RIC-226101 viewsÆ As, 10.75g
Rome mint, 80-81 AD
RIC 226 (R). BMC 210.
Obv: IMP T CAES VESP AVG P M TR P COS VIII; Head of Titus, laureate, bearded, l.
Rev: GENI P R; S C in field; Genius stg. l., with patera over altar and cornucopiae
Acquired from London Ancient Coins, September 2018.

Genius - 'The spirit of the Roman people' is not a common motif in Flavian coinage. It occurs under Vespasian on rare Spanish military denarii struck early in his reign and briefly during the reign of Titus on asses struck in 80-81. Mattingly connects the type under Titus with 'the vows undertaken for the first five years of the new reign'. The coin is dated COS VIII which Titus held in 80 (he did not renew the consulship in 81). Unlike the parallel silver issue the bronze lack an IMP number and cannot be more precisely dated. Most likely they were struck in the first half of 80 along with the silver.

Neatly centred with a fantastic portrait.
9 commentsDavid AthertonSep 18, 2018
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Æ Vespasian-RIC-116067 viewsÆ Dupondius, 11.14g
Lyon mint, 71 AD
RIC 1160 (R2). BMC 809.
Obv: IMP CAESAR VESPASIAN AVG COS III; Head of Vespasian, radiate, r.
Rev: VICTORIA NAVALIS; S C in field; Victory stg. r. on prow, with wreath and palm
Acquired from Victor's Imperial Coins, September 2018.

The Victory on prow type is traditionally attributed to the naval victory Vespasian won on Lake Gennesaret (Sea of Galilee) during the Jewish War. By any definition it is a most bizarre 'naval' battle indeed. Near the close of the Galilean campaign, Vespasian and Titus marched to Lake Gennesaret in order to secure the cities along its coastline. Tiberias fell without much resistance, but the neighbouring city of Taricheae was a tougher nut to crack. Home to many of the Jewish rebels who had fled Tiberias, they put up a small fight on the plain outside the city and were quickly defeated by Titus' troops who then stormed the city and began slaughtering the inhabitants. Many of the rebels took flight to waiting boats they had previously commandeered on the lake. These were likely local fishing or ferry vessels not intended for use in war. Vespasian ordered the legionaries to construct large rafts in order to pursue the rebel's makeshift flotilla. With the coastline guarded by Roman horsemen the legionaries launched their rafts and sailed out in a large line toward the enemy. The Jewish boats were no match for the heavily armoured Roman rafts. The legionaries easily picked off the Jewish rebels who had no means of escape. The slaughter was intense, so much so that Josephus claims 6,500 Jews were killed. Several years later during Vespasian and Titus' Jewish War Triumph in Rome, ships were displayed to commemorate the battle. Were the Victoria Navalis coins struck with the same event in mind? As unlikely as it seems, the impromptu 'naval' battle at Lake Gennesaret is the best candidate for Vespasian striking this Actium-lite reverse type. The connection to Augustus would not have been lost on his contemporaries. Flavian propaganda at its most exaggerated.

This Victoria Navalis dupondius struck at Lugdunum (Lyon) is much rarer than the Rome mint variants, which are more commonly seen on the As issues. The 'severe' portrait along with the globe at the base of the neck help to distinguish them from their Rome mint counterparts.
5 commentsDavid AthertonSep 12, 2018
V715b.jpg
Æ Vespasian RIC-71582 viewsÆ Dupondius, 10.55g
Rome mint, 74 AD
RIC 715 (C2). BMC 696.
Obv: IMP CAES VESP AVG P M T P COS V CENS; Head of Vespasian, radiate, r.
Rev: FELICITAS PVBLICA; S C in field; Felicitas stg. l., with caduceus and cornucopiae
Acquired from Aegean Numismatics, August 2018.

A decently sized bronze coinage was struck for Vespasian in 74. The Felicitas on the reverse symbolises the prosperity and abundance Vespasian has brought to the empire. It is easily one of the commonest reverse types of the issue.

Well centred with a few marks on the reverse.
5 commentsDavid AthertonSep 01, 2018
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Vespasian RIC 02 (2)79 viewsAR Denarius, 2.80g
Rome Mint, 69-70 AD
RIC 2 (C2). BMC 35. RSC 226.
Obv: IMP CAESAR VESPASIANVS AVG; Head of Vespasian, laureate, r.
Rev: IVDAEA in ex.; Jewess (as type of Judaea), draped and veiled, seated r. on ground in attitude of mourning, legs extended, head resting on l. hand, which is propped on knees, r. arm on lap; behind, trophy, consisting of helmet, cuirass, oblong and round shield, greaves, and two round shields
Acquired from eBay, August 2018.

My second example of the common Judaea Capta denarius. Here Judaea's legs are extended instead of the more common 'knees drawn up'. Mattingly notes the distinction in the BMCRE II catalogue, it is largely uncommented upon elsewhere. Most likely these denarii commemorating the defeat of the Jews in the Judaean War were struck after news had reached Rome of Titus' capture of Jerusalem in late August 70. The portraits still do not resemble Vespasian, who arrived in Rome in October 70. Vespasian had to have been very proud of his Judaean victory because this Capta denarius type was one of the first struck in Rome in such vast quantities. The Flavian propaganda resulting from this war proved to be very valuable in legitimising the dynasty's reign. Although a very common type, these command premium prices in trade because of the Judaean War connection.

This portrait features a lean Vespasian with short, stubbly hair.

4 commentsDavid AthertonAug 28, 2018
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Vespasian RIC 29 (2)59 viewsAR Denarius, 3.28g
Rome Mint, January - June 70 AD
RIC 29 (C3). BMC 26. RSC 94h.
Obv: IMP CAESAR VESPASIANVS AVG; Head of Vespasian, laureate, r.
Rev: COS ITER TR POT; Pax, draped, seated l., holding branch extended in r. hand and winged caduceus in l.
Acquired from Aegean Numismatics, August 2018.

This seated Pax is by far the most common type of the 'COS ITER' issue. It may even have been struck well after June 70, evidenced by the vast quantities that have survived and the classic Vespasianic portrait many of them display (Vespasian arrived in Rome c. October 70). COS ITER in the reverse legend is sometimes unusually spaced dependent on where Pax's branch is positioned - here the break occurs between the 'T' and 'E'. Most examples do not have such a break.

An early fine style portrait with true Vespasianic features. Unobtrusive flan flaw.
4 commentsDavid AthertonAug 16, 2018
V980a.jpg
Vespasian RIC-980 (3)55 viewsAR Denarius, 2.92g
Rome mint, 77-78 AD
RIC 980 (C). BMC 217 corr. RSC 219.
Obv: CAESAR VESPASIANVS AVG; Head of Vespasian, laureate, right.
Rev: IMP XIX across field; Modius, standing on three legs, containing one ear of corn upright, then two ears of corn bending r. and l. with poppy in between and two ears of corn hanging over the sides
Acquired from Münzen & Medaillen, July 2018. 'From an old Swiss collection'.

A rare variant of the modius type with poppies in between the corn ears. The variants with poppies tend to have longer corn ears than the common examples without them. The poppy in the Roman world was often a symbol of abundance and fertility, so it is quite fitting to see them symbolically stored in a modius alongside corn ears. NB: BMC 217 has the poppies on either side of the upright corn ear.

Well centred on a ragged flan.
2 commentsDavid AthertonAug 08, 2018
RPC1651var.jpg
RPC-1651-Vespasian (2)44 viewsAR Didrachm, 6.93g
Caesarea, Cappadocia mint, 76-77 AD
RPC 1651 var. (19 spec.).
Obv: AYTOKPA KAICAP OYЄCΠACIANOC CЄBACTOC; Head of Vespasian, laureate, r.
Rev: ΔOMЄTIANOC KAICAP CЄBA YIO ЄT Θ; Domitian standing, l., holding branch
Acquired from Forvm Ancient Coins, July 2018.

A 'local' style Cappadocian didrachm with an unusual reverse legend variant. Here we have 'ΔOMЄTIANOC' instead of 'ΔOMITIANOC', and 'CЄBA' instead of 'CЄB'. The odd spelling of Domitian's name with an 'Є' occurs only a handful of times on extremely rare bronze provincial coins. To my knowledge this variant legend is confined to just one reverse die. Nemonator has a die match in his Forvm gallery. RPC have not assigned it a separate catalogue number, but it is noted in the 2017 Addenda.

The reverse features Domitian 'son of the Augustus' togate as consul, holding an olive branch in a suggestion of peace. An interesting provincial dynastic type.

Richly toned in fine 'local' style.
3 commentsDavid AthertonAug 01, 2018

Random files - David Atherton's Gallery
D845.jpg
Domitian RIC-845180 viewsAR Cistophorus, 10.59g
Rome mint (for Asia), 82 AD
RIC 845 (R). BMC 255. RSC 2 (under Domitian and Domitia). RPC 866 (6 spec.).
Obv: IMP CAES DOMITIAN AVG P M COS VIII; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: DOMITIA AVGVSTA; bust of Domitia, draped, r., hair massed in front and in long plait behind
Ex Berk, eBay, 30 December 2013. EX Berk 145, 14 September 2005, lot 459.

Domitian's cistophori were minted in Rome for distribution in Asia Minor on two separate occasions: at the beginning of the reign in 82 and near the end in 95. The type with the empress Domitia on the reverse can be dated to the first group based on Domitian's COS date. The style and die axis are similar to the denarii minted at Rome during the same period, firmly placing these cistophori to that mint.

A most fitting type to be minted at the beginning of the reign. Two similar portraits in a wonderfully "Flavian" style.


13 commentsDavid Atherton
V1496lg.jpg
09e Domitian as Caesar-RIC 149691 viewsAR Denarius, 3.17g
Ephesus (?) mint, 76 AD (Vespasian)
RIC 1496 (R2). BMC 489. RSC 369. RPC 1469 (2 spec.).
Obv: CAESAR AVG F DOMITIANVS; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r. 'o' mint mark below neck
Rev: PON MAX TR P COS IIII; Winged caduceus
Acquired from Britaly Coins, April 2016.

The small series struck under Vespasian this coin comes from is quite mysterious. The mint is not known for certain, although Ephesus is a prime suspect. K. Butcher and M. Ponting in The Metallurgy of Roman silver Coinage analysed the Ephesian and 'o' mint series and their data shows both issues are made from the same bullion. Not definitive proof the two series are from the same mint, but good evidence of a strong link. Unlike the Ephesian series, the 'o' issue is full of blundered legends and mules. This denarius struck for Domitian Caesar has a PON MAX reverse legend, an impossible title for the young prince. However, what the mint masters lacked in competency, the engravers made up for in their stylish portraits.

A wonderful portrait struck on a large flan. An obverse die match with my RIC V1494.
6 commentsDavid Atherton
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RPC-1659-Vespasian48 viewsAR Hemidrachm, 1.41g
Caesarea, Cappadocia mint, undated
RPC 1659 (18 spec.).
Obv: AVTOKP KAICAP OYЄCΠACIANOC CЄBA; Head of Vespasian, laureate, r.
Rev: No legend; Nike advancing r., wreath in r. hand, palm in l. hand

All the hemidrachms from Caesarea were struck in "local style" and originate from that mint, as opposed to those coins in "Roman style" which were struck in Rome and shipped to Caesarea. Although undated they probably were minted in regnal year 9 (76/77).

Fairly worn, but in decent condition with all the main devices on flan.
1 commentsDavid Atherton
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Domitian RIC-761142 viewsAR Denarius, 3.37g
Rome mint, 93-94 AD
RIC 761 (C3). BMC 214. RSC 283b.
Obv: IMP CAES DOMIT AVG GERM P M TR P XIII; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: IMP XXII COS XVI CENS P P P; Minerva adv r., with spear and shield (M1)

Typical of Domitian's later issues, this coin is well centred and displays a stylish portrait.
2 commentsDavid Atherton