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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Roman Coins| ▸ |The Adoptive Emperors| ▸ |Trajan||View Options:  |  |  |   

Trajan, 25 January 98 - 8 or 9 August 117 A.D.

Marcus Ulpius Traianus, a brilliant general and administrator, was adopted and proclaimed emperor by the aging Nerva in 98 A.D. Regarded as one of Rome's greatest emperors, Trajan was responsible for the annexation of Dacia, the invasion of Arabia and an extensive and lavish building program across the empire. Under Trajan, Rome reached its greatest extent. Shortly after the annexation of Mesopotamia and Armenia, Trajan was forced to withdraw from most of the new Arabian provinces. While returning to Rome to direct operations against the new threats, Trajan died at Selinus in Cilicia.Roman Dominions in the Time of Trajan

|Trajan|, |Trajan,| |25| |January| |98| |-| |8| |or| |9| |August| |117| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
In 100 A.D. Pliny the Younger advanced to the consulship, giving his panegyric on Trajan in the process. On 24 August 79, he along with his uncle, Pliny the Elder, witnessed the eruption of Vesuvius, during which his uncle died. Pliny rose through the cursus honorum, a series of Imperial civil and military offices. He wrote hundreds of letters, many of which still survive, that are of great historical value for the time period. Some are addressed to reigning emperors or to notables such as the historian Tacitus. His letters to Trajan provide one of the few surviving records of the relationship between the imperial office and provincial governors.
RS94598. Silver denarius, Woytek 68a, BnF IV 52, Hunter II 21, RSC II 227a, RIC II 33 var. (double cornucopia), BMCRE IV 64 var. (same), Strack I 29 var. (same), SRCV II -, Choice F, nice portrait, well centered, light marks, weight 3.014 g, maximum diameter 18.7 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 1 Jan - Oct(?) 100 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES NERVA TRAIAN AVG GERM, laureate head right; reverse P M TR P COS III P P, Concordia seated left on low seat without back, offering from patera in right hand over flaming and garlanded altar on left, cornucopia in left hand; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $120.00 (€110.40)
 


|Trajan|, |Trajan,| |25| |January| |98| |-| |8| |or| |9| |August| |117| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
Although Ares was viewed by the Greeks primarily as destructive and destabilizing, worthy of contempt and revulsion, for the Romans, Mars was a father (pater) of the Roman people. He was the father of Romulus and Remus, the legendary founders of Rome. In early Rome, he was second in importance only to Jupiter, and the most prominent of the military gods in the religion of the Roman army. Most of his festivals were held in March, the month named for him (Latin Martius), and in October, which began and ended the season for military campaigning and farming.
RS94600. Silver denarius, Woytek 554v, BMCRE III 590, RSC II 271, BnF IV 866, Hunter II 192, RIC II 340, Strack I 243, SRCV II -, gF, light toning, flow lines, light marks, tiny edge cracks, weight 3.451 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 20 Feb - autumn 116 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES NER TRAIANO OPTIMO AVG GER DAC PARTHICO, laureate and draped bust right, from behind; reverse P M TR P COS VI P P S P Q R, Mars walking right, helmeted, nude but for cloak billowing behind and sword on belt around waist, transverse spear in right hand, trophy over shoulder in left; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $120.00 (€110.40)
 


|Trajan|, |Trajan,| |25| |January| |98| |-| |8| |or| |9| |August| |117| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
Fortuna Redux, one of the many aspects of Fortuna, was in charge of bringing people home safely, primarily from wars - redux means "coming back" or "returning." She may be one of the later aspects of Fortuna, as the earliest mention of her is on an altar dedicated by the Senate in 19 B.C. for the safe return of Emperor Augustus.
RS94601. Silver denarius, Woytek 526v, BMCRE III 578, RIC II 318, RSC II 154, BnF IV 828, Hunter II 187, Strack I 235, SRCV II 3139 var. (also cuirassed), F, nice portrait, obverse well centered, flow lines, die wear, edge cracks, weight 3.406 g, maximum diameter 18.4 mm, die axis 225o, Rome mint, winter 114 - beginning 116 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES NER TRAIANO OPTIMO AVG GERM DAC, laureate and draped bust right; reverse P M TR P COS VI P P S P Q R, Fortuna seated left, veiled, holding rudder by tiller in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, FORT RED in exergue; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $100.00 (€92.00)
 


|Trajan|, |Trajan,| |25| |January| |98| |-| |8| |or| |9| |August| |117| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
Providentia is the personification of the ability to foresee and to make provision for the future. This ability was considered essential for the emperor and providentia was among the embodiments of virtues that were part of the imperial cult. Cicero said that providentia, memoria (memory) and intellegentia (understanding) are the three main components of prudentia, the knowledge what is good or bad or neither.
RS94602. Silver denarius, Woytek 580v, BnF IV 896, RIC II 361, RSC II 313, BMCRE III 640, Hunter II 209, SRCV II -, aVF, centered on a tight flan, flow lines, weight 3.268 g, maximum diameter 18.7 mm, die axis 210o, Rome mint, c. autumn 116 - August 117 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES NER TRAIAN OPTIM AVG GERM DAC, laureate and draped bust right; reverse PARTHICO P M TR P COS VI P P S P Q R, Providentia standing left, pointing at large globe left at feet with right hand, scepter in left hand, resting left elbow on column, PRO-VID (foresight) across field; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $110.00 (€101.20)
 


|Trajan|, |Trajan,| |25| |January| |98| |-| |8| |or| |9| |August| |117| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
Virtus to the ancient Romans included valor, manliness, excellence, courage, character, and worth, perceived as masculine strengths (from Latin vir, "man"). Curiously, despite the masculine characteristics of virtus, the personification or deity Virtus was usually depicted as a female warrior, in armor holding a spear, parazonium, victory or a shield. Virtus and Mars can usually be distinguished since Mars is usually shown nude and Virtus is always shown clothed.
RS94603. Silver denarius, Woytek 578v, BnF IV 906, RIC II 334, RSC II 193, BMCRE III 631, Hunter II 204, Strack I 256, SRCV II -, Choice gF, well centered, nice portrait, light tone, flow lines, minor die wear, tiny edge cracks, weight 3.358 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, fall 116 - August 117 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES NER TRAIAN OPTIM AVG GERM DAC, laureate and draped bust right, right shoulder forward; reverse PARTHICO P M TR P COS VI P P S P Q R, Virtus standing right, inverted spear in right hand, parazonium in left hand, left foot on helmet; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $110.00 (€101.20)
 


|Trajan|, |Trajan,| |25| |January| |98| |-| |8| |or| |9| |August| |117| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
The Romans believed that Fortuna, after deserting the Persians and Assyrians, took flight over Macedonia and saw Alexander perish as she passed into Egypt and into Syria. At last arriving on Mount Palatine, she threw aside her wings and casting away her wheel, entered Rome where she took up her abode forever.
RS94604. Silver denarius, Woytek 271b, BMCRE III 306, RSC II 87, BnF IV 269, Hunter II 95, RIC II 122, Strack I 149, SRCV II 3125, aVF, near full legends, flow lines, porosity, marks, small edge cracks, weight 2.895 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 2nd half 107 - 108 A.D.; obverse IMP TRAIANO AVG GER DAC P M TR P, laureate head right, slight drapery on far shoulder; reverse COS V P P S P Q R OPTIMO PRINC, Fortuna standing slightly left, head left, holding tiller of grounded rudder in right hand, cornucopia in left hand; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $110.00 (€101.20)
 


|Trajan|, |Trajan,| |25| |January| |98| |-| |8| |or| |9| |August| |117| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
Abundantia, her Greek name is Euthenia, stands for abundance or plenty. Abundantia resembles Annona. But Annona was limited to the grain supply for the current year, whereas Abundantia was a prodigal distributor of all kinds of things. Her attributes are stalks of grain and the cornucopia. Clothed in a long robe, and wearing a veil, she can be seated or standing and is sometimes shown emptying a cornucopia.
RS94605. Silver denarius, Woytek 18a, BnF IV 11, RIC II 11, BMCRE III 9, RSC II 301, Hunter II 4, Strack I 15, SRCV III -, aVF, radiating flow lines,, weight 3.320 g, maximum diameter 18.5 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, Feb 98 - autumn 99 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES NERVA TRAIAN AVG GERM, laureate head right; reverse PONT MAX TR POT COS II (high priest, holder of Tribunitian power, consul for the 2nd time), Abundantia (Justitia?) seated left on chair formed from two crossed cornucopia, short scepter in right, left elbow rests on back of chair, fold of drapery over lap; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $100.00 (€92.00)
 


|Trajan|, |Trajan,| |25| |January| |98| |-| |8| |or| |9| |August| |117| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
Fortuna Redux, one of the many aspects of Fortuna, was in charge of bringing people home safely, primarily from wars - redux means "coming back" or "returning." She may be one of the later aspects of Fortuna, as the earliest mention of her is on an altar dedicated by the Senate in 19 B.C. for the safe return of Emperor Augustus.
RS94606. Silver denarius, Woytek 579v, BnF IV 894, RSC II 150a, BMCRE III 634, Hunter II 206, RIC II 315, Strack I 257, SRCV II -, F/aF, nice portrait for the grade, flow lines, darker spots, reverse weak, porosity, small edge splits/cracks, weight 2.739 g, maximum diameter 19.3 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, c. Autumn 116 - August 117 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES NER TRAIAN OPTIM AVG GERM DAC, laureate and draped bust right, from behind; reverse PARTHICO P M TR P COS VI P P S P Q R, Fortuna sitting left, rudder held by tiller in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, FORT RED in exergue; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $90.00 (€82.80)
 


|Trajan|, |Trajan,| |25| |January| |98| |-| |8| |or| |9| |August| |117| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
Spes was the Roman personification of Hope. In art, Spes is normally depicted carrying flowers or a cornucopia, but on coins she is almost invariably depicted holding a flower in her extended right hand, while the left is raising a fold of her dress. She was also named "ultima dea" - for Hope is the last resort of men.
RS94607. Silver denarius, Woytek 266b, RSC II 84, BMCRE III 319, BnF IV 272, Hunter II 102, RIC II 127, Strack I 151, SRCV II 3127, gF, oval flan, light toning, flow lines, marks, tiny edge crack, weight 2.919 g, maximum diameter 20.1 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, second half 107 - 108 A.D.; obverse IMP TRAIANO AVG GER DAC P M TR P, laureate bust right, slight drapery on left shoulder; reverse COS V P P S P Q R OPTIMO PRINC, Spes walking left, flower in right hand, raising fold of chiton with left hand; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $115.00 (€105.80)
 


|Trajan|, |Trajan,| |25| |January| |98| |-| |8| |or| |9| |August| |117| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
In Hellenistic religious tradition, gods were served by priests and goddesses by priestesses but Roma's priesthood was male, perhaps in acknowledgment of the virility of Rome's military power. Priesthood of the Roma cult was competed among the highest ranking local elites.
RS97491. Silver denarius, Woytek 287b, RSC II 68a, BMCRE III 271, RIC II 115, Strack I 133, SRCV II 3120, VF, well centered on a tight flan, flow lines, bumps and marks, struck with a worn reverse die, weight 3.243 g, maximum diameter 18.6 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, c. 110 A.D.; obverse IMP TRAIANO AVG GER DAC P M TR P, laureate bust right with slight drapery; reverse COS V P P S P Q R OPTIMO PRINC, Roma standing left, Victory extended in right, spear vertical behind in left; ex Papillon auction 3 (27 Dec 20), lot 404; $110.00 (€101.20)
 




  






|OBVERSE| LEGENDS|

BONEVENTLIBO
DIVOTRAIANO
DIVOTRAIANOPARTHAVGPATRI
DIVVSTRAIANVSPATERAVGVSTVS
IMPCAESNERTRAIANOOPTIMOAVGGERDAC
IMPCAESNERTRAIANOPTIMAVGGERDACPARTHICOPMTRPCOSVIPP
IMPCAESNERTRAIANOPTIMAVGGERDACPMTRPCOSVIPP
IMPCAESNERTRAIANOPTIMAVGGERMDAC
IMPCAESNERTRAIANOPTIMAVGPMTRPCOSVI
IMPCAESNERVAETRAIANOAVGGERDACPMTRPCOSVPP
IMPCAESNERVAETRAIANOAVGGERDACPMTRPCOSVIPP
IMPCAESNERVATRAIANAVGGERM
IMPCAESNERVATRAIANAVGGERMDACICVSPM
IMPCAESNERVATRAIANAVGGERMPM
IMPCAESNERVATRAIANAVGGERMPMTRPPP
IMPCAESNERVATRAIANOGERM
IMPCAESNERTRAIANAVG
IMPCAESNERTRAIANOOPTIMOAVGGERDAC
IMPCAESNERTRAIANOOPTIMOAVGGERDACPARTHICOPMTRPCOSVIPP
IMPCAESNERTRAIANOOPTIMOAVGGERM
IMPCAESTRAIANAVGGERDACPPREST
IMPCAESTRAIANAVGGERM
IMPNERVATRAIANAVGGERMPM
IMPNERVACAESTRAIANAVGGERMPM
IMPNERVACAESTRAIANAVGGERMPMTRPPP
IMPNERVATRAIANVSAVGGERDACICVS
IMPTRAIANOAVGGERDACPMTRP
IMPTRAIANOAVGGERDACPARTHICO
IMPTRAIANOAVGGERDACPMTRPCOSVPP
IMPTRAIANOAVGGERDACPMTRPCOSVDESVI
IMPTRAIANOAVGGERDACPMTRPCOSVIPP
IMPTRAIANOPTIMAVGGERMDAC
IMPTRAIANOOPTIMOAVGGERDACPMTRP
IMPTRAIANOPIOFELAVGPP
IMPTRAIANVSAVGGERDACPMTRPCOSVIPP
IMPTRAIANVSAVGGERMDACICVS


REFERENCES|

Besombes, P. Bibliothèque Nationale, Catalogue des Monnaies de l'Empire Romain, IV Trajan (98-117 après J.-C.). (Paris, 2008).
Banti, A. & L. Simonetti. Corpus Nummorum Romanorum. (Florence, 1972-1979).
Calicó, E. The Roman Avrei, Vol. I: From the Republic to Pertinax, 196 BC - 193 AD. (Barcelona, 2003).
Cayón, J. Los Sestercios del Imperio Romano, Vol. I: De Pompeyo Magno a Matidia (Del 81 a.C. al 117 d.C.). (Madrid, 1984).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappées sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 2: Nerva to Antoninus Pius. (Paris, 1883).
Hill, P. The Dating and Arrangement of the Undated Coins of Rome, A.D. 98-148. (London, 1970).
Mattingly, H. & R. Carson. Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum, Vol. 3: Nerva to Hadrian. (London, 1936).
Mattingly H. & E. Sydenham. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. II: Vespasian to Hadrian. (London, 1926).
McAlee, R. The Coins of Roman Antioch. (Lancaster, PA, 2007).
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet. II. Trajan to Commodus (London, 1971).
Seaby, H. & R. Loosley. Roman Silver Coins, Vol. II: Tiberius to Commodus. (London, 1979).
Sear, D. Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. II: The Accession of Nerva to the Overthrow of the Severan Dynasty AD 96 - AD 235. (London, 2002).
Simic, V. & M. Vasic. "La monaie des mines romaines de I'llyrie" in RN 1977.
Strack, P. Untersuchungen zur römischen Reichsprägung des zweiten Jahrhunderts, Teil 1: Die Reichsprägung zur Zeit des Traian. (Stuttgart, 1931).
Toynbee, J. Roman medallions. ANSNS 5. (New York, 1944).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).
Woytek, B. Die Reichsprägung des kaisers Traianus (98-117). MIR 14. (Vienna, 2010).

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