Numism > Reading For the Advanced Collector

Weights, Diameters and Composition of Ancient Coins

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Lloyd Taylor:

--- Quote from: Joe Sermarini on February 22, 2003, 11:01:34 pm ---There isn't any one place to find the weight, diameter and composition of all the various types of ancient coins.  These facts are often buried throughout references.  When you come across this type of information, please post it here.  

--- End quote ---

You might be interested in the following plot, which elegantly summarizes a couple of centuries of debasement of the Denarius. 

(Source: Popular Delusions When to Sell Gold by Dylan Grice - Societe Generale Cross Asset Research Strategy Document 23 March 2010)

Kevin D:
Michael H. Crawford  ‘Coinage And Money Under The Roman Republic’  (1985)
Page 335, App. C  The silver content of coins of Magna Graecia (p. 33).

[chlorsilber (silver chloride, ‘horn silver’)]

                                     Silver          Chlorsilber           Copper           Lead         Reference
Neapolis      ?                87.55           5.77                    ?                     ?                (1)
Neapolis  Didrachm       91.63           trace                   7.13               0.88            (2)
Neapolis  Didrachm       93.02            -                         5.77               1.09            (2)
Neapolis  Didrachm       92.55            -                         6.02               1.22            (2)
Velia            ?                85.37           8.48                     ?                    ?                 (1)
Thurium   Diobol            91.09           trace                   7.15               trace           (2)
Thurium   Diobol            92.00            -                         7.03               0.73            (2)
Heraclea      ?                76.27          13.04                   ?                    ?                 (1)
Heraclea   Diobol           94.14            -                         5.58               0.10           (2)
Tarentum  Obol              88.45           some                 10.19              0.51           (2)
 
References:
(1) GGA 1843, 2, 1289.
(2) E. Bibra, 'Uber alte Eisen- und Silberfunde (Nürnberg and Leipzig, 1873).

Henry S:
Got a chance to XRF a Philip II AV Stater and a Alexander III AV Stater (Teos, ca. 310-301 BC, Price -; Hersh-; Arena 16, pl. 13, 30.)

The Philip Stater was 99.82% gold, .09% Silver, and .07% Copper, with a trace of selenium.

The Alexander Stater was 99.5% gold, .25% silver, .14% copper, and .1% selenium.

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