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

Antoninus Pius, August 138 - 7 March 161 A.D.

Titus Aurelius Fulvius Boionius Arrius Antoninus was born around 86 A.D. to a distinguished family. After a typical senatorial career, he made a name for himself as proconsul of Asia. He was adopted as Emperor Hadrian's heir in February 138 A.D. and succeeded soon after. His reign was long and peaceful, a Golden Age of tranquility and prosperity. He died in 161 A.D., leaving Marcus Aurelius as his successor.

|Antoninus| |Pius|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.|, |dupondius|
Annona was worshiped in Rome as the goddess who prospered the year's supply of grain. She was represented on an altar in the capital. The three principal granaries of Rome were Sicily, Egypt, and the African provinces. Annona civilis was the grain which purchased each year by the Roman state, then imported and put into storage, reserved and distributed for the subsistence of the people. Annona militaris was grain appropriated to the use of an army during a campaign.
RB92442. Orichalcum dupondius, RIC III 993; Strack III 1129; BMCRE IV p. 342, * (refs Strack); Hunter II 342; SRCV II -; Cohen II -, gVF, superb portrait and reverse style, attractive toned brass surfaces, marks, some porosity, tight flan, weight 11.118 g, maximum diameter 24.8 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 156 - 157 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS AVG PIVS P P IMP II, radiate head right; reverse TR POT XXI COS IIII (holder of Tribunitian power 21 years, consul 4 times), Annona standing slightly left, head left, two stalks of grain downward in right hand, modius at feet left overflowing with grain, rudder in left hand resting on prow at feet on right, S - C (senatus consulto) divided across field at center; from the Errett Bishop Collection; $300.00 SALE |PRICE| $270.00
 


|Antoninus| |Pius|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.|, |sestertius|
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.
RB92441. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC III 906, Cohen II 732, BMCRE IV 1925, SRCV II 4216, Hunter II 303, Choice aVF, nice portrait, well centered, green and brown patina, edge crack, weight 22.600 g, maximum diameter 33.0 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 152 - 153 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS AVG PIVS P P TR P XVI, laureate head right; reverse SALVS AVG COS IIII (health of the emporer), Salus standing left, feeding snake coiled around round altar from patera in her right hand, long scepter vertical in her left hand, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field; from the Errett Bishop Collection; $180.00 SALE |PRICE| $162.00
 


|Antoninus| |Pius|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.|, |denarius|
The palladium, a small figure of Minerva (Pallas Athena) holding a spear and shield, had a mythological origin from Troy. Troy was believed to be safe from foreign enemies as long as the palladium remained within the city walls. But Odysseus and Diomedes stole the image and soon after the Greeks took the city. The palladium was later taken by Aeneas to Rome where for centuries it was kept in the temple of Vesta in the Forum. In Late Antiquity, it was rumored that Constantine had taken the palladium to Constantinople and buried it under the Column of Constantine.
RS94707. Silver denarius, RIC III 238, RSC II 201, BMCRE IV 829, Strack III 282, Hunter II 98, SRCV II -, VF, nice portrait, obverse well centered on tight flan, strong radiating flow lines, edge ragged with flan cracks, weight 2.779 g, maximum diameter 19.0 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 154 - 155 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS AVG PIVS P P TR P XVIII, laureate head right; reverse COS IIII, Vesta standing left, sacrificing from patera in right hand over flaming altar at feet on left, palladium in left hand and cradled in left arm; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $160.00 SALE |PRICE| $144.00
 


|Antoninus| |Pius|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.|, |denarius|
Not in RIC. The normal obverse legend for combined with this reverse type and legend is IMP CAES T AEL HADR ANTONINVS AVG PIVS P P. This coin is missing HADR. For this variety, only four sales in the last two decades are recorded on Coin Archives.
RS94123. Silver denarius, RSC II 825c, BMCRE IV 736 note, Strack III 228, RIC III 202b (S) var. (obv. legend), SRCV II 4108 var. (obv. legend), Choice F, nice portrait, well centered, toned, die wear, edge a bit ragged with small cracks, weight 2.996 g, maximum diameter 18.4 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 151 - 152 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES T AEL ANTONINVS AVG PIVS P P, laureate head right; reverse TR POT XIIII COS IIII, Tranquillitas standing right, rudder in right hand, stalks of grain downward in left, TRANQ in exergue; very rare; $130.00 SALE |PRICE| $117.00
 


|Antoninus| |Pius|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.|, |sestertius|
Antoninus Pius' relationship with the army was peculiar for a Roman emperor. One modern scholar has written "It is almost certain not only that at no time in his life did he ever see, let alone command, a Roman army, but that, throughout the twenty-three years of his reign, he never went within five hundred miles of a legion."
RB92438. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC III 600(a), BMCRE IV 1233, Hunter II 199, Cohen II 139, SRCV II 4157, nice F, excellent portrait, attractive toned surfaces, bumps and marks, areas of corrosion, weight 26.250 g, maximum diameter 33.8 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 142 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS AVG PIVS P P TR P COS III, laureate head right, drapery on left shoulder; reverse CONCORDIA EXERCITVVM (harmony with the army), Concordia standing slightly left, head left, Victory in right hand, legionary standard in left hand, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field; from the Errett Bishop Collection; $120.00 SALE |PRICE| $108.00
 


|Antoninus| |Pius|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.|, |denarius|
Vesta was originally a household spirit. Later she was personified as the goddess of the hearth and given the stature of her Greek equivalent, Hestia. In the temple of Vesta, her sacred flame was kept alive by Vestal Virgins. In 394, by order of the Christian emperor Theodosius I in his campaign to eliminate pagan practices in Rome, the fire of Vesta was extinguished.
RS88002. Silver denarius, RIC III 229a, RSC II 198, BMCRE III 806 corr. (simpulum vice patera), Hunter II 93, Strack 268, cf. SRCV II 4065 (TR P XVI), Choice EF, mint luster, flow lines, die wear, light tone, areas of slight porosity, edge splits, weight 3.234 g, maximum diameter 18.9 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 153 - 154 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS AVG PIVS P P TR P XVII, laureate head right; reverse COS IIII, Vesta standing left, simpulum in right hand, palladium in left in left hand and arm; $110.00 SALE |PRICE| $99.00
 


Antoninus Pius, August 138 - 7 March 161 A.D., Coela, Thracian Chersonesos

|Chersonesos|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.,| |Coela,| |Thracian| |Chersonesos|, |AE| |17|
Coela in Chersonesos Thraciae (on the Gallipoli peninsula) issued gold and silver coins under Alexander the Great and from the early 2nd century A.D. struck Roman provincial and colonial coins.
RP84057. Bronze AE 17, SNG Cop 872 (same dies), Varbanov 2888 (R6) var. (legends, grain above prow), SNG Tüb -, SNG Hunterian -, SNG Dreer -, BMC Thrace -, Lindgren -, VF, nice green patina, tight flan cutting off much of the legends, marks, weight 4.166 g, maximum diameter 17.2 mm, die axis 135o, Coela mint, Aug 138 - 7 Mar 161 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES - ANTONINVS (or similar), laureate head right; reverse AEL MVNI COELANI (or similar), war galley prow left; very rare; $100.00 SALE |PRICE| $90.00
 


Antiocheia, Pisidia, 138 - 161 A.D.

|Pisidia|, |Antiocheia,| |Pisidia,| |138| |-| |161| |A.D.|, |AE| |14|
Paul of Tarsus gave his first sermon to the Gentiles (Acts 13:13-52) at Antiochia in Pisidia, and visited the city once on each of his missionary journeys, helping to make Antioch a center of early Christianity in Anatolia. Antioch in Pisidia is also known as Antiochia Caesareia and Antiochia in Phrygia.
RP89331. Bronze AE 14, RPC Online IV.3 T7350 (10 spec.); Krzyzanowska pl. IV, table 8, VII/- (cf. 7-9); BMC Lycia p. 176, 1; SNGvA 4916, VF, green patina, earthen deposits, cleaning scratches. , weight 1.401 g, maximum diameter 13.5 mm, die axis 180o, Antioch in Pisidia (Yalvac, Turkey) mint, c. 138 - 161 A.D.; obverse ANTIO-C-H, bare-headed, draped bust of Hermes (resemble young Marcus Aurelius as caesar) left, caduceus behind; reverse CO-LONI, cock walking right; ex CNG e-auction 400 (28 Jun 17), lot 528; $100.00 SALE |PRICE| $90.00
 


Antoninus Pius, August 138 - 7 March 161 A.D.

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.|, |tetradrachm|
 
RS73963. Silver tetradrachm, Dattari 2141/2143; Milne 1927; Geissen 1562; Curtis 571/572; Kampmann 35.384; Emmett 1358/11; BMC Alexandria -, F, inscriptions partially unstruck and off flan, weight 14.284 g, maximum diameter 23.3 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 147 - 28 Aug 148 A.D.; obverse ANTWNEINOC CEB EYCEB (clockwise from upper right), laureate head right; reverse L EY∆EKATOY (year 11), Apollo Didymaios (Milesios) standing facing, laureate, nude, small stag in extended right hand, bow in left at side; scarce; $95.00 SALE |PRICE| $85.50
 


|Antoninus| |Pius|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.|, |sestertius|
The column of Antoninus Pius was red granite, 14.75 meters (48.4 ft) high and 1.9 meters (6 ft 3 in) in diameter with no decorating reliefs unlike the columns of Trajan and Marcus Aurelius. Prior to the 18th century the base was buried, but part of the column projected above the ground. In 1703 the rest of the column and the base were excavated. The column, lying on the ground covered by sheds, was damaged by fire in 1759. Repairs were unsuccessful and pieces from it were used in 1789 to restore the obelisk of Augustus. The white Italian marble base was restored in 1706-08. It is now in the Vatican Museums in the courtyard outside the entrance to the Vatican Pinacoteca. Base of the Column
RB91326. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC III MA1269, BMCRE IV MA880, Hunter II 24, Cohen II 354, SRCV II 5199, MIR 18 MA46-6/10, F, well centered, dark patina, scattered small encrustations, weight 24.132 g, maximum diameter 32.8 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, struck under M. Aurelius & Lucius Verus, c. 162; obverse DIVVS ANTONINVS, bare head right; reverse DIVO PIO, column set on large base within balustrade, surmounted by statue of Divus Antoninus Pius standing left on a Corinthian capital, eagle in right hand, vertical scepter in left, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking column; $95.00 SALE |PRICE| $85.50
 




  






OBVERSE| LEGENDS|

ANTONINVSAVGPIVS
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSCOS
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPP
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPCOSIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPCOSIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPIMPII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRP
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXI
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXV
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVI
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXX
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXI
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPCOSII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPCOSIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPCOSIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXI
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXV
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVI
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXIX
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXX
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXI
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPPTRIXX
ANTONINVSFXII
ANTONINVSFXVI
ANTONINVSFXVII
ANTONINVSFXXII
IMPANTONINVSAVGCOS
IMPANTONINVSAVGVSTVS
IMPCAESAELANTONINVSAVG
IMPCAESAELIVSANTONINVSAVG
IMPCAESTAELANTONINVSAVGPIVSPP
IMPCAESTAELHADRANTONINVSAVGPIVSPP
IMPCAESTAELHADRIANTONINVSAVGPIVS
IMPCAESTAELHADRIANTONINVSAVGPIVSPP
IMPTAELCAESANTONINVS
IMPTAELCAESANTONINVSAVG
IMPTAELCAESARHADRANTONINVS
IMPTAELCAESHADRANTONINVS
IMPTAELCAESHADRIANTONINVS
IMPTAELIVSCAESARANTONINVS


REFERENCES|

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).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappées sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 2: Nerva to Antoninus Pius. (Paris, 1883).
Mattingly, H. & E. Sydenham. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. II: Vespasian to Hadrian. (London, 1926). (Caesar under Hadrian)
Mattingly, H. & E. Sydenham. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. III: Antoninus Pius to Commodus. (London, 1930).
Mattingly, H. & R. Carson. Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum, Vol. 4: Antoninus Pius to Commodus. (London, 1940).
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 III: Die Reichsprägung zur Zeit Antoninus Pius. (Stuttgart, 1937).
Toynbee, J. Roman medallions. ANSNS 5. (New York, 1944).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).

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