Numismatic and History Discussions > Roman Coins

caesar's elephant coin

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Marcelo Leal:
Interesting theory!!!

Marcelo Leal.

Very interesting, and well studied  +++. Which book is being referred too? I am working on my library and this one sounds like a good addition.

The book I am referring to is Roman Republican Moneyers and Their Coins 63 BC - 49 BC which was published by Batsford in 1995. It is out of print and extremely expensive on the used market. Acilius' chapter is in that book. Since I recently self-published Roman Republican Moneyers and Their Coins 81 BCE - 64 BCE (which is available from Forum Ancient Coins at a reasonable price), I am revising that older edition  taking into consideration some of the criticism offered in reviews and from email exchanges with people who have read the books. I hope to have a new edition available toward the end of summer, but you will not be able to put it on your library shelf since I will probably make it an ebook. The modern world!

The problem is, it seems so clear that the elephant is triumphing over the serpent, it undercuts the idea that it is the villain in the image. I think it represents good over evil...

Michael, you noted
"she cited a small bronze coin minted by Aulus Hirtius in Gaul that used the same image of elephant trampling serpent on the obverse, but inscribed with his name HIRTIVS in the exergue instead of CAESAR." 
   The AE type is very rare:

Hirtius minted numerous aurei (very common for the denomination) jointly with Caesar. The elephant type of Caesar was common and Hirtius was on Caesar's side, so that is enough reason for Hirtius to adopt Caesar's type ("Caesar and I are good buddies"). This could be even if the elephant originally somehow referred directly to Caesar.
  Michael Grant devoted a RNS Presidential lecture to the idea that very common types are important. I  don't think we should put much weight on the very rare types, especially if there is an alternative explanation.
  --  Warren


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