Numism > For the New Ancient Coin Collector

Buy the Book Before the Coin/Book Recommendations for the Beginner

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This statement is not to be taken literally and even more loosely defined I don't necessarily agree with it. Especially as a new collector you don't need any coin books immediately. Some general history books would be much more useful. There is much basic and some advanced information to be found here, try the resources and numiswiki links above. There are lots of free books, though most are older to be found here:

Once you have found that you have an interest in a particular field, go ahead and buy some books but especially in the beginning this can change quickly.

A volume I highly recommed for the beginner is the ERIC (Encyclopedia of Roman Imperial Coins).

Jay GT4:
I've found that for 95% of attributions I can find it in the SEAR Roman Coins and their Values Millenium edition.  I have all 3 volumes but volume 1 starts from the republic and goes to Domitian.  I would recommend volume 1 if that is where your interests lie.  You could always buy the other volumes later.  Plus it lists RIC and other reference numbers.  Lots of pictures and a nice general biography of each ruler.

I found that buying books first was definitely the way to do it.  Simply because once my coin addiction had used all of my money up, and I couldn't afford to pay for heating, I at least then had something to burn to keep me warm in the winter  :evil:

David Atherton:
I certainly didn't follow this advice when starting out. I bought a few coins and then decided to buy my first coin book, VanMeter if I recall. My next book purchase was Roman Silver coins II which corresponded nicely with the era and denomination I chose to collect. As time went by more specialized books were added (BMCRE, RIC) and the very helpful Dictionary of Roman Coins.

I agree with aerich, a few history books will be very useful too. They will only enhance your enjoyment for collecting ancient coins.


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