Numismatic and History Discussions > History and Archeology

Possible discovery of a new Roman usurper emperor?

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Ron C2:

Interesting article and the coins science seems sound. Unsurprisingly, there are skeptics too.

Jay GT4:
I'm skeptical ;)

Jan P:
When one sees a picture of the coin, there is reason to be skeptical.
And the numismatics were !
But the fact, the piece was found in a hoard of genuine coins and the circumstances of place and time the coin must have circulated changed the minds now about this piece.
Let's see if there is a second Sponsian popping up  ::).

There are five Sponsianus coins listed by Eckhel; 2 in the Imperial Museum, Vienna, 1 in the former Museum de France that ended up in Vienna, and 2 others also located in Austria. The Hunter coin was acquired in 1783 from the Hess collection which is the one from Museum de France, the collection of Joseph de France (an official in the court of Maria Theresa).




Link to actual paper with better images:

I believe all known examples originate from the same 1713 find?

The style, motif, and legend are all bizzare. I struggle to identify anything normal looking, maybe the hair?

The researchers concluded the ‘coin’ (they actually say medallion) is cast not struck.

So against the Sponsian piece being genuine we have:
- bizzare style
- Unsual to unique inscription and layout
- Unusual metal composition
- Unusual and significantly divergent weights
- No other examples found
- Cast
- A dude no one has ever heard of, with name so strange it can only be found recorded once in the first century

And for we have:
- Looks scratched up
- Has some old looking deposits
- Forger would have had to use a lot of expensive gold

I think I’m in camp Henry Cohen, who according to the paper concluded “je regarde ces pièces comme des coins modernes ridiculement imaginés, et très-mal faits”


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