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

Hadrian, 11 August 117 - 10 July 138 A.D.

Hadrian, one of the "Five Good Emperors," abandoned the expansionist policy of Trajan and established a policy of defense and consolidation during which Hadrian's Wall in Britain was constructed. He traveled to nearly every province of the Empire, more than any other emperor, often ordering grandiose building programs to improve infrastructure and the quality of life in those regions. An ardent admirer of Greece, he sought to make Athens the cultural capital of the Empire and ordered the construction of many opulent temples in the city. He spent much of his time with the military; usually wore military attire and even dined and slept amongst the soldiers. He ordered military training and drilling to be more rigorous and made use of false reports of attack to keep the army alert. He suppressed the Bar Kokhba revolt in Judaea, renaming the province Syria Palaestina.Roman Empire 125 AD

|Hadrian|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |A.D.||sestertius|
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.
RB95780. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC II-3 260 (S), BMCRE III 1203, Hunter II 358, SRCV II 3625, Cohen II 1207 var. (no drapery), Choice aEF, dark patina, light deposits, spots of corrosion, weight 27.215 g, maximum diameter 35.2 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, c. 119 A.D.; obverse IMP CAESAR TRAIANVS HADRIANVS AVG P M TR P COS III, laureate bust right, bare chest, slight drapery on left shoulder; reverse PROVIDENTIA DEORVM (to the foresight of the gods), Hadrian standing facing, togate, lituus (or scroll?) in left hand, head left looking at eagle flying right with scepter held in talons, extending right hand to receive scepter from eagle, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field; scarce; $990.00 SALE |PRICE| $891.00
 


Pergamon, Mysia, c. 134 A.D.

|Pergamon|, |Pergamon,| |Mysia,| |c.| |134| |A.D.||dupondius|
Eurypylos was a Mysian hero of the Trojan War. His image is otherwise unknown on coinage. Like Bellerophon at Corinth and Dionysos at Tium, this image of a local hero appears modeled on Antinous. Homer (Odyssey 11.522) has Odysseus say that Eurypylus was, next to Memnon, the most beautiful man he had ever seen.

The strategos I. Pollion is named on several coin types of Pergamon during the reign of Hadrian, including one for Sabina (RPC III 1737) and another for Antinous (RPC III, 1738).

The link between Pergamon and Paphos, evidenced by this coin, is not well understood. However, the same reverse was used, from Hadrian to Philip I, on coins struck to honor an alliance between Sardes and Paphos.
RP96071. Orichalcum dupondius, RPC Online III 1740 (4 spec.), SNG BnF 1897, Weber 5206, SNG Cop -, BMC Mysia -, F, porous, reverse off center, countermark obscure, weight 11.652 g, maximum diameter 26.5 mm, die axis 0o, Pergamon (Bergama, Turkey) mint, time of Hadrian, c. 134 A.D.; obverse HPΩC EYPYΠYΛOC (Hero Eurypylos), head of hero Eurypylos (with the features of Antinous) right, flowing hair, uncertain oval countermark; reverse ΠEPΓAMHNΩN EΠI CTP ΠΩΛΛIΩNOC (Pergamon, struck under strategos Pollion), temple of Aphrodite at Paphos, in which conical xoanon, semicircular walled courtyard, ΠAΦIA (of Paphos) across the courtyard; extremely rare, the 5th known; $970.00 SALE |PRICE| $873.00
 


|Hadrian|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
Roma was a female deity who personified the city of Rome and more broadly, the Roman state. The earliest certain cult to dea Roma was established at Smyrna in 195 B.C., probably to mark the successful alliance against Antiochus III. In 30/29 B.C., the Koinon of Asia and Bithynia requested permission to honor Augustus as a living god. "Republican" Rome despised the worship of a living man, but an outright refusal might offend their loyal allies. A cautious formula was drawn up, non-Romans could only establish a cult for divus Augustus jointly with dea Roma. In the city of Rome itself, the earliest known state cult to dea Roma was combined with Venus at the Hadrianic Temple of Venus and Roma. This was the largest temple in the city, probably dedicated to inaugurate the reformed festival of Parilia, which was known thereafter as the Romaea after the Eastern festival in Roma's honor. The temple contained the seated, Hellenised image of dea Roma with a Palladium in her right hand to symbolize Rome's eternity.
RS97450. Silver denarius, RIC II-3 541, RSC II 1102, Strack II 121, BMCRE III 136 ff., Hunter II 71, SRCV II 3519, VF, attractive iridescent toning, obv. well centered, flow lines, rev. a little off center, some die wear, marks, scattered light porosity, weight 2.871 g, maximum diameter 17.3 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, late 121 - 123 A.D.; obverse IMP CAESAR TRAIAN HADRIANVS AVG, laureate head right; reverse P M TR P COS III, Roma seated left on cuirass, helmeted and draped, right breast bare, right foot drawn back and resting on helmet, Victory in right hand, spear vertical behind in left hand, round shield on ground behind cuirass; ex Trusted Coins; $175.00 SALE |PRICE| $158.00
 


|Hadrian|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |A.D.||semis|NEW
Most references list this type as a quadrans but examples without patina appear to be orichalcum (brass) vice copper. Yellow brass indicates the type is a semis. This coin has a near black patina, which is more common on brass than on bronze or copper, and the few spots of bare metal do look to be brass.
RB97458. Orichalcum semis, RIC II 625 (S), BMCRE III 1279, Cohen II 1167 (5 fr.), SRCV II 3704, Strack II 579, Hunter II 380 var. (eagle left, head right), gVF, very attractive eagle, slightly rough, weight 3.352 g, maximum diameter 17.9 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 120 - 123 A.D.; obverse IMP CAESAR TRAIAN HADRIANVS AVG, eagle standing half right, head turned left, wings open but not spread; reverse P M TR P COS III, horizontal winged thunderbolt, S C (senatus consulto) below; ex Savoca Coins auction blue 89 (8 Nov 2020), lot 1243; scarce; $150.00 SALE |PRICE| $135.00
 


|Hadrian|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
In 127 Hadrian divided Italy into four regions under imperial legates with consular rank, acting as governors. They were given jurisdiction over all of Italy, excluding Rome itself, therefore shifting Italian cases from the courts of Rome. Having Italy effectively reduced to the status of a group of mere provinces did not go down well with the Roman Senate, and the innovation did not long outlive Hadrian's reign.
RS94596. Silver denarius, RSC II 328, BMCRE III 391, RIC II-3 716(A2), Strack II 167, Hunter II 124 var. (no drapery), SRCV II 3475 var. (same), aVF, nice portrait, clear legends, flow lines, porous, reverse die wear, small edge cracks/splits, weight 2.913 g, maximum diameter 18.9 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, c. 124 - 125 A.D.; obverse HADRIANVS AVGVSTVS, laureate bust right, slight drapery on far shoulder; reverse COS III, Concordia seated left, patera in extended right hand, resting left elbow on small statue of Spes; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $140.00 SALE |PRICE| $126.00
 


|Hadrian|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |A.D.||denarius|
Salus was the Roman goddess of health. She was Hygieia to the Greeks, who believed her to be the daughter of Aesculapius, the god of medicine and healing, and Epione, the goddess of soothing of pain. Her father Asclepius learned the secrets of keeping death at bay after observing one snake bringing another snake healing herbs. Woman seeking fertility, the sick, and the injured slept in his temples in chambers where non-poisonous snakes were left to crawl on the floor and provide healing. This coin, dedicated to the health of the emperor, probably indicates the emperor was at the time suffering from some disease, and sacred rites had been performed for his recovery.
RS96580. Silver denarius, RIC II-3 231, Strack II 124, BMCRE III 207, RSC II 1151, Hunter II 76, SRCV III 3525, Choice aVF, excellent heroic bust, well centered with full borders, light marks, edge a little ragged with splits, weight 2.932 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 119 - mid 120 A.D.; obverse IMP CAESAR TRAIAN HADRIANVS AVG, laureate bust right, bare chest, slight drapery on far shoulder; reverse P M TR P COS III, Salus seated left, from patera in right hand, feeding snake rising from altar before her, resting left elbow on back of chair; $140.00 SALE |PRICE| $126.00
 


|Hadrian|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |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.
RS97232. Silver denarius, RSC II 1204c; BMCRE III 696, RIC II.3 2320(A1), Strack II 257, SRCV II 3531, Choice aVF, nice portrait, well centered, flow lines, light marks, tiny edge cracks, weight 3.308 g, maximum diameter 18.1 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 137 - Jul 138 A.D.; obverse HADRIANVS - AVG COS III P P, laureate head right; reverse PROVIDEN-TIA AVG, Providentia standing left, right hand over globe at feet (no wand), long scepter vertical in left hand, left elbow on column (column not clearly visible); $140.00 SALE |PRICE| $126.00
 


|Hadrian|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
In 135, Simon bar Kokhba was killed in Betar, a fortress where he had taken refuge. Resistance continued in Galilee. The Jewish diaspora began as Emperor Hadrian barred Jews from Jerusalem and had survivors of the massacre dispersed across the Roman Empire. Many were sold into slavery. Jerusalem, largely destroyed, was renamed Colonia Aelia Capitolina. Legio VI Ferrata rebuilt the legionary fortress in the city and constructed a Roman temple at Golgotha. An altar to Jupiter was erected on the site of the Temple in Jerusalem.
RS94595. Silver denarius, RSC II 716, BMCRE III 627, RIC II-3 2200, Hunter II 208, Strack 237, SRCV II 3492 var. (laureate), Choice aVF, nice portrait, some reverse die wear, small edge cracks, weight 3.308 g, maximum diameter 18.0 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 136 A.D.; obverse HADRIANVS AVG COS III P P, bare head right; reverse FIDES PVBLICA (loyalty of the public), Fides standing facing, head right, grain ears in right hand, raising plate of fruit in left in left hand; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $130.00 SALE |PRICE| $117.00
 


|Hadrian|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
In Roman religion, every man has a genius, a presiding spirit. In De Die Natali, Censorinus says, from the moment we are born, we live under the guard and tutelage of Genius. Cities, organizations, and peoples also had a genius. On coins, we find inscriptions to the Genius of the Army, of the Senate, of the Roman People, etc. The figure depicted is the statue of the Spirit of the Roman People which was then in the Roman Forum (it is now lost). The act of pouring the libation to the emperor illustrates what the Christians were required to do in order not to be persecuted.
RS94593. Silver denarius, RIC II-3 724, RIC II 173(c), RSC II 335b, BMCRE III 400, Hunter II 128, Strack II 168, SRCV II 3476 var. (slight drapery), Choice F, toning, centered on a wide flan, flow lines, porosity, edge ragged with small splits, weight 2.712 g, maximum diameter 20.7 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, c. 124 - 125 A.D.; obverse HADRIANVS AVGVSTVS, laureate head right; reverse COS III, Genius standing left, nude to waist, himation around hips and legs and draped over left arm, sacrificing from patera in right over flaming garlanded altar, cornucopia in left hand; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $120.00 SALE |PRICE| $108.00
 


Hadrian, 11 August 117 - 10 July 138 A.D., Caesarea, Cappadocia

|Cappadocia|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |A.D.,| |Caesarea,| |Cappadocia||hemidrachm|
Kayseri, Turkey was originally named Mazaca. It was renamed Eusebia by Ariarathes V Eusebes, King of Cappadocia, 163 - 130 B.C. The last king of Cappadocia, King Archelaus, renamed it "Caesarea in Cappadocia" to honor Caesar Augustus upon his death in 14 A.D. Muslim Arabs slightly modified the name into Kaisariyah, which became Kayseri when the Seljuk Turks took control, c. 1080 A.D.
RP92839. Silver hemidrachm, Sydenham Caesarea 260; SNGvA 6414; BMC Galatia p. 62, 146; Metcalf 87 var. (slight drapery left shoulder); SNG Cop 224 var. (bust), F, flow lines, die wear, weight 1.723 g, maximum diameter 14.5 mm, die axis 0o, Cappadocia, Caesarea (Kayseri, Turkey) mint, 121 - 122 A.D.; obverse AYTO KAIC TPAI A∆PIANOC CEBACT, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, seen from the front; reverse Nike advancing right, holding wreath in right hand, palm frond in left hand, ET E (year 5) right; $110.00 SALE |PRICE| $99.00
 




  






|OBVERSE |LEGENDS

AVGVSTVSHADRIANVS
AVGVSTVSHADRIANVSPP
DIVVSHADRIANVSAVG
HADRIANVSAVGCOSIIIPP
HADRIANVSAVGVST
HADRIANVSAVGVSTVS
HADRIANVSAVGVSTVSPP
IMPCAEDITRAIANFDIVNERNEPTRAHADRIANOAVG
IMPCAEDIRAPARFDIVINERNEPTRAHADRIANOAVG
IMPCAESARTRAIAHADRIANVSAVG
IMPCAESARTRAIANHADRIANVSAVG
IMPCAESARTRAIANVSHADRIANVSAVG
IMPCAESARTRAIANVSHADRIANVSAVGPMTRPCOSIII
IMPCAESHADRIANDIVINERTRAIANOPTFIL
IMPCAESTRAHADRIANOAVGPP
IMPCAESTRAIANHADRIANOAVGDIVITRA
IMPCAESTRAIANHADRIANOAVGDIVITRAPARTHF
IMPCAESTRAIANHADRIANOPTAVGGERDAC
IMPCAESTRAIANHADRIANOOPTAVGGERDAC


REFERENCES|

Abdy, R. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. II - Part 3, From AD 117 - 138, Hadrian. (London, 2019).
Banti, A. & L. Simonetti. Corpus Nummorum Romanorum. (Florence, 1972-1979).
Blum, G. "Numismatique D'Antinoos" in JIAN 16. (Athens, 1914). pp. 33 - 70.
Calicó, E. The Roman Avrei, Vol. I: From the Republic to Pertinax, 196 BC - 193 AD. (Barcelona, 2003).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappées sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 2: Nerva to Antoninus Pius. (Paris, 1883).
Delegido Moran, C. Aprovisionamiento, circulación y uso de la moneda de plata en Hispania (siglos I-III d.C.): El Tesoro de Llíria. (Valencia, 2014).
Hill, P. The Dating and Arrangement of the Undated Coins of Rome, A.D. 98-148. (London, 1970).
Mattingly H. & E. Sydenham. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. II: Vespasian to Hadrian. (London, 1926).
Mattingly, H. & R. Carson. Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum, Vol. 3: Nerva to Hadrian. (London, 1936).
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).
Strack, P. Untersuchungen zur römischen Reichsprägung des zweiten Jahrhunderts, Teil II: Die Reichsprägung zur Zeit des Hadrian. (Stuttgart, 1933).
Toynbee, J. Roman medallions. ANSNS 5. (New York, 1944).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).

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