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Index Of All Titles


Alexander Tetradrachms
Ancient Coin Collecting 101
Ancient Coins & Modern Fakes
Ancient Counterfeits
Ancient Glass
Ancient Weapons
Ancient Wages and Prices
Ancient Weights and Scales
Anonymous Folles
Anonymous Follis
Anonymous Class A Folles
Armenian Numismatics Page
Byzantine Denominations
A Cabinet of Greek Coins
A Case of Counterfeits
Clashed Dies
Coins of Pontius Pilate
Conditions of Manufacture
Countermarked in Late Antiquity
Dictionary of Roman Coins
Doug Smith's Ancient Coins
Edict on Prices
Facing Portrait of Augustus
Fel Temp Reparatio
Fertility Pregnancy and Childbirth
Friend or Foe
Greek Alphabet
Greek Dates
Greek Mythology Link
Hellenistic Names & their Meanings
Helvetica's ID Help Page
Historia Numorum
Illustrated Ancient Coin Glossary
Imperial Mints of Philip the Arab
Latin Plurals
Latin Pronunciation
Library of Ancient Coinage
Life in Ancient Rome
Maps of the Ancient World
Military Belts
Mint Marks
Nabataean Numerals
Not in RIC
Numismatic Bulgarian
Numismatic Excellence Award
Numismatic French
Numismatic German
Numismatic Italian
Numismatic Spanish
Parthian Coins
Paleo-Hebrew Alphabet
Phoenician Alphabet
Pi-Style Athens Tetradrachms
Pricing and Grading Roman Coins
Roman Coin Attribution 101
Roman Mints
Roman Names
Serdi Celts
Silver Content of Parthian Drachms
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum
Syracusian Folles
The Evolving Ancient Coin Market
The Sign that Changed the World
The Temple Tax Hoard
Travels of Paul
Tribute Penny
Tribute Penny Debate Continued (2015)
Tribute Penny Debate Revisited (2006)
Tyrian Shekels
What Did The Julio Claudians Really Look Like?
What I Like About Ancient Coins
Widow's Mite


Please add updates or make corrections to the NumisWiki text version as appropriate.
Uncia (ounce), a brass coin, the twelfth part of a Roman pound, or As [AS]. The issue of an As of a Roman pound of 12 unicae, or the as libralis, took place in the time of the Decemvirs, 451 BC, but the existing As rarely weigh more than 10 unicae. Later the As fell successively from 10 unicae to four, or perhaps this reduction was suddenly accomplished about the time of the first Punic War, 268 BC. In 217 BC the As was reduced to one unica by the Les Flaminia. At last in 89 BC or thereabouts, under the Lex Papiria, the As fell to a semiuncia (half-ounce). The uncia was rarely struck after the reduction of the As. The expression heres ex uncia denoted the heir to a tenth or twelfth part of an estate. The mark of value of the uncia was (a dash-like symbol -); of the semunica S. Among the pieces struck a Paestrum there occurs the Seacuncia (semisqueunica -S) equal the the eighth of an As.

The principal types of the earliest uncia, semuncia, and aes grave of Italy are:
- Knuckle bone
- Acorn
- Grain of barley
- Vase
- Club
- Frog
- Spear-head
- Ear of corn
- Crescent
- Head of Apollo or Diana
- The Dioscuri
- Hercules
- Lion
- Boar's head
- Owl
- Axe with two edges (double axe or bipennis)
- Shell
- Anchor
- Thunderbolt (fulmen)
- Gaulish head
- Prow of a ship
- Two-handled vase
- Amphora
- Sacrificial knife
- Hatchet

The ordinary kind of uncia is: Obverse: Helmeted head left, - behind. Reverse: Prow of a vessel to right, - below; bronze.

The following are types other than "prow of a ship" issued at Rome after the suppression of the as liberalis in 268 BC:

1st Period, 268-224 BC

- Obv: Helmeted female head, - behind. Rev: A cornucopiae (rare); bronze
- Obv: Female head with Phrygian helmet terminating in the beak of a bird. Rev: One of the Dioscuri galloping; bronze
The semuncia S has on the obverse the heads of the Dioscuri, and on the reverse two horses galloping, two stars above.
- Obv: Female head right, - behind. Rev: SAR (Saranus), elephant to left.
The moneyer may have been M. Atilius Serranus, or perhaps another of the same family.
- Obv: Female head. Rev: A CAE within a wreath; bronze.
No mark of value on this uncia. Coins with this legend are usually attributed to Caecina gens, but also probable is A. Caecilius.

2nd Period, 154-134 BC:

Obv: Helmeted female head right, - behind. Rev: L H TVB within a laurel wreath; in the exergue ROMA; bronze

3rd Period, 134-114 BC

Obv: Helmeted female head right, - behind. Rev: Q METE (in monogram) within a laureal wreath; in the exergue ROMA; bronze.
This Metellus is probably one of three from the Caecilia gens, who was consul in 123, 109, and 98 BC.

4th Period, 114-104 BC

- Obv: L PHILIPPVS, laureate head of Saturn; sometimes a sickle behind. Rev: Dog walking to right, - above; sometimes a prow of a vessel, dog and - above; bronze
- Obv: Helmeted bust of Minerva (?), - behind. Rev: Q LVTATI within an oak wreath; bronze
- Obv: Helmeted female head right, - behind. Rev: C FON, Mars in a quadriga to right; in the exergue ROMA; - above; bronze.
- Obv: CN DOMI, diademed head of Venus right, - behind. Rev: Q CVRTI M SILA, a lyre; bronze.

5th Period, 104-84 BC

- Obv: Helmeted female head right, - behind. Rev: M HERENNI ROMA, two cornuacopiae; bronze.
- Obv: Helmeted female head right, - behind. Rev: MAN FONT ROMA, a quadriga; bronze.
- Obv: SCAVEVA, helmeted head of Pallas (?) right. Rev: M AVF (in monogram), Centaur right; bronze.

View whole page from the Dictionary Of Roman Coins