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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Themes & Provenance| ▸ |Numismatics| ▸ |Old Collection Coins||View Options:  |  |  | 

Old Collection Coins

Classical Numismatics was once the hobby of kings. It is actually possible today to buy ancient coins that were once in the collections of royalty, U.S. presidents, and other wealthy and famous collectors. Old collection coins are not only popular because of their provenance but also because properly stored coins will often attractively tone and become more beautiful over time.

Nero and Agrippina Junior, 55 A.D.

|Nero|, |Nero| |and| |Agrippina| |Junior,| |55| |A.D.||aureus|
Agrippina Jr. was daughter of Agrippina Sr. and Germanicus, sister of Caligula, and mother of Nero. She seduced and married her uncle Claudius, murdering him after she secured the thrown for Nero. A soothsayer prophesied if Nero became emperor, he would kill his mother, Agrippina replied "Let him kill me, only let him rule!" Nero executed her in 59 A.D.
SH33183. Gold aureus, SRCV I 2042, BnF II 10, RIC I 6, BMCRE I 7, Cohen I 3, VF, scratches and dings, ex jewelry with mounting marks, weight 7.733 g, maximum diameter 19.2 mm, die axis 90o, Rome mint, c. Jan - Nov 55 A.D.; obverse NERO CLAVD DIVI F CAES AVG GERM IMP TR P COS, conjoined bare headed busts of Nero and Agrippina Junior (draped) right; reverse AGRIPP AVG DIVI CLAVD NERONIS CAES MATER, seated statues of Divus Augustus and Claudius on car drawn to left by four elephants, EX S C in field; ex G. Marchesi collection (Bologna, c. 1990); rare (R3); SOLD


Tiberius, 19 August 14 - 16 March 37 A.D.

|Tiberius|, |Tiberius,| |19| |August| |14| |-| |16| |March| |37| |A.D.||aureus|
In 36 A.D., Pontius Pilate was recalled to Rome after putting down a Samaritan uprising. Marcellus became governor of Judaea and Samaria.
SH30618. Gold aureus, Giard Lyon, group 5, 151; RIC I 29 (R); BMCRE I 47; Calico 305c (S.3); Cohen 15; SRCV I 1760, gVF, attractive red tone, weight 7.709 g, maximum diameter 19.0 mm, die axis 135o, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, c. 36 - 37 A.D.; obverse TI CAESAR DIVI AVG F AVGVSTVS, laureate head right, laurel wreath ties fall in small undulations (waves); reverse PONTIF MAXIM (high priest), Pax (or Livia as Pax) seated right on chair with decorated legs, a single line below, long scepter vertical behind in her right hand, branch in left hand, feet on footstool; ex Bosco Reale Hoard, Pompeii 1898; rare; SOLD


Thourioi, Lucania, Italy, c. 400 - 350 B.C.

|Italy|, |Thourioi,| |Lucania,| |Italy,| |c.| |400| |-| |350| |B.C.||double| |nomos|
A superb example from the period when Thurium's coinage reached its highest point of excellence in execution. The head of Athena is probably that of the sea-goddess Athena Skyletria. The bull may be a symbol of Dionysos or may have been derived from the archaic coins of Sybaris and symbolize the river Krathis. A more romantic view is that the butting bull symbolizes the rushing waters of the fountain Thuria from which the city took its name.
SH28048. Silver double nomos, Noe Thurian, group F, 28 (same dies); HN Italy 1805; SNG ANS 969; SNG Lloyd 486 (same dies); Jameson 359 (same dies); Pozzi 229 (same dies), VF, toned, weight 15.461 g, maximum diameter 26.3 mm, die axis 0o, Thourioi (near Sibari, Cosenza, Calabria, Italy) mint, c. 400 - 350 B.C.; obverse head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Skylla scanning; I∆ behind neck guard; reverse ΘOYPIΩN, bull butting right, fish right in exergue; well struck on a broad flan, ex Sunrise Collection, Triton X lot 45; SOLD


Syracuse, Sicily, Agathokles, 317 - 289 B.C.

|Syracuse|, |Syracuse,| |Sicily,| |Agathokles,| |317| |-| |289| |B.C.||tetradrachm|
Although Agathocles was brutal in pursuit of power, afterward he was a mild and popular "tyrant." His grandest goal was to establish democracy as the dominant form of government for the world. He did not want his sons to succeed him as king and restored the Syracusan democracy on his death bed.
SH54900. Silver tetradrachm, SNG Lloyd 1494; M. Ierardi, Tetradrachms of Agathokles of Syracuse, AJN N.S. 7-8, 1996, 238, choice gVF, weight 16.445 g, maximum diameter 25.4 mm, die axis 180o, 305 - 295 B.C.; obverse KOPAΣ, head of Kore left, wreathed in grain; reverse AΓA[ΘOKΛEIOΣ], Nike standing half right raising trophy, hammer in right, triskeles at feet left; ex Tom Cederlind, ex Mnzen Und Medaillen List 260 (1965), #17; rare with head left; SOLD


Maximinus II Daia, May 310 - 30 April 313 A.D.

|Maximinus| |II|, |Maximinus| |II| |Daia,| |May| |310| |-| |30| |April| |313| |A.D.||follis|
Maximinus II was made caesar in 305. After Galerius died, Maximinus II invaded and annexed Galerius' former territory. In 313, he invaded Licinius' territory. Although he seized many cities his army was destroyed in a battle. He fled disguised as a slave but fell ill and died.
SH04235. Billon follis, RIC VI Antiochia 145b, EF, weight 6.04 g, maximum diameter 24.5 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 310 A.D.; obverse MAXIMINVS NOB CAES, helmeted and cuirassed bust left, spear in right over shoulder, shield on left arm decorated with two riders and four figures; reverse SOLI INVICTO (to the invincible sun god), Sol holding globe in right and raising left, riding in a facing quadriga, two horses split in each direction, S in center, ANT in exergue; from the Aiello Collection, Alex G. Malloy auction LX listed this coin with an estimate of $2,500 (unsold); very rare (R3); SOLD


Otho, 15 January 69 - 17 April 69 A.D.

|Otho|, |Otho,| |15| |January| |69| |-| |17| |April| |69| |A.D.||denarius|
From the Prof. Henry H. Armstrong collection. In 1910, when he purchased this coin, Professor Armstrong lived in Rome working as a Research Associate of the Carnegie Institution in Archaeology teaching at the American School for Classical Studies. From 1918 until his death in 1935 he taught at Beloit College as head of the Department of Romance Languages. Nicknamed "Sparky" by the students, his death after a two-week illness came as a shock to the college. His coins, inherited by his son, sat in a cigar box for the next 74 years.
SH39592. Silver denarius, RIC I 8 (R2), RSC II 17, BMCRE I 18, BnF III 10, Hunter I C3807, SRCV I 2162, VF, beautiful rainbow toning, weight 3.057 g, maximum diameter 19.2 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, Feb - Mar 69 A.D.; obverse IMP M OTHO CAESAR AVG TR P, bare head right; reverse SECVRITAS P R (security of the people of Rome), Securitas standing slightly left, head left, wreath in right hand, long scepter in left hand; exceptional full flan and beautiful old "cigar box" collection rainbow toning; from the Prof. Henry H. Armstrong collection, handwritten envelope notes, "Alcott sold for $3.50 for very good. Purchase, Champion, 1910."; rare; SOLD


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

|Hadrian|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |A.D.||denarius|
From the Prof. Henry H. Armstrong collection. In 1910, the year when he acquired this coin, Professor Armstrong lived in Rome working as a Research Associate of the Carnegie Institution in Archaeology teaching at the American School for Classical Studies in Rome. From 1918 until his death in 1935 he taught at Beloit College as head of the Department of Romance Languages. Nicknamed "Sparky" by the students, his death after a two-week illness came as a shock to the college. His coins, inherited by his son, sat in a cigar box for the next 74 years, acquiring this beautiful iridescent toning.
SH84800. Silver denarius, BMCRE III 247, RSC II 1174b, Strack II 105, RIC II 113c var. (draped and cuirassed), SRCV II 3529 var. (same), gem EF, beautiful old collection "cigar box" rainbow toning, fantastic galley, handsome portrait, some light marks, small edge cracks, weight 3.212 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 122 A.D.; obverse IMP CAESAR TRAIAN HADRIANVS AVG, laureate and draped bust right; reverse P M TR P COS III, galley rowed left, mast with furled sail in bow, rudder and cabin in stern; from the Prof. Henry H. Armstrong collection, handwritten envelope notes, "Purchase, Champion, 1910."; SOLD


Thasos, Thrace, c. 412 - 404 B.C.

|Thasos|, |Thasos,| |Thrace,| |c.| |412| |-| |404| |B.C.||drachm|
During the period when this coin was minted there was much chaos on the island. Thasos had revolted against their Athenian aggressors and was subsequently occupied by the Spartans (Lacedaemonians). In the following years Thasos was occupied by one or the other of the two opposing powers and did not regain freedom until the Battle of Cynoscephalae in 197 B.C. Only drachms were struck in this late and final issue of the satyr and nymph type. Despite the chaos of the time and the archaized punch reverse, the obverse dies were engraved in elegant fine classical style.
SH87191. Silver drachm, Le Rider Thasiennes 8; HGC 6 336 (R1); Svoronos HPM -; SNG Cop -, aEF, superb classical style, dark old cabinet toning, some die wear/rust, scattered porosity, light bumps and marks, weight 3.438 g, maximum diameter 16.7 mm, Thasos mint, 5th type, c. 412 - 404 B.C.; obverse nude ithyphallic satyr kneeling-running right, carrying in his arms a struggling nymph, he is balding and is crowned with an ivy wreath, her hair is rolled and she wears a long chiton, her right arm is behind his back; reverse pebbled quadripartite square punch; ex Shanna Schmidt Numismatics; ex Nomos AG, obolos 8 (2 Dec 2017), lot 157; ex W. F. Stoecklin Collection, Amriswil, Switzerland; ex Bank Leu, Zurich (prior to 1975); rare, last satyr and nymph type, final issue struck only as a drachm!; SOLD


Aegina, Saronic Islands, Greece, 490 - 485 B.C.

|Aegina|, |Aegina,| |Saronic| |Islands,| |Greece,| |490| |-| |485| |B.C.||stater|
Aegina was probably the first place in Europe to issue coinage, an Aegina turtle is considered a "must have" by many ancient coin collectors.

Click here to read about Greek Turtles.
SH19452. Silver stater, HGC 6 430; Meadows Aegina group IIa-IIb; SNG Lockett 1954 (this coin), Pozzi 3638 (this coin), SGCV I 1858, BMC Attica 10, VF, toned, weight 12.108 g, maximum diameter 19.0 mm, Aegina mint, 485 - 480 B.C.; obverse sea turtle with a smooth shell; reverse incuse square of proto-skew pattern; ex Pozzi, ex Lockett; SOLD


Judaean Kingdom, Herod Agrippa II, c. 49 - 95 A.D., Struck for Claudius

|Claudius|, |Judaean| |Kingdom,| |Herod| |Agrippa| |II,| |c.| |49| |-| |95| |A.D.,| |Struck| |for| |Claudius||AE| |23|
Paul was accused by Jewish leaders of blaspheming God, desecrating the temple, encouraging people to disobey Mosaic Law, sedition, insurrection, and creating riots against the government. Paul appealed, using his right as a Roman citizen for a decision from the Emperor in Rome. He was imprisoned in Caesarea Maritima awaiting transport to Rome. Agrippa and Bernice met with the Roman governor Festus a few days later. They held a hearing to discuss the charges. Paul described his conversion on the road to Damascus, then said, "I preached that they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds. I am saying nothing beyond what the prophets and Moses said would happenthat the Christ would suffer and, as the first to rise from the dead, would proclaim light to his own people and to the Gentiles." Festus thought Paul was out of his mind. He couldnt understand why the Jewish leaders would bother with him. Agrippa said, "Are you trying to convert me?" Paul replied, "Short time or long - I pray God that not only you, but all who are listening to me today may become what I am, except for these chains." Agrippa and Festus later agreed Paul had not done anything that deserves death or imprisonment. Agrippa said to Festus, "This man could have been set free if he had not appealed to Caesar."
SH98712. Bronze AE 23, RPC Online I 4842; Hendin 6289; Meshorer TJC 350; Sofaer 83; Rosenberger III p. 47, 11, F, tooled, corrosion, pitting, encrustations, seldom seen better, weight 10.795 g, maximum diameter 23.1 mm, die axis 30o, Caesarea Paneas (Banias, Golan Heights) mint, pre-royal coinage, 53 - 54 A.D.; obverse TI CLAVDIVS CAESAR AVG P M TR P IMP P P, laureate head of Claudius left; reverse ANTONIA BRITANNICVS OCTAVIA, Brittanicus standing facing, flanked on left by Antonia, and on right by Octavia (the three children of Claudius), each holds a cornucopia; ex Ira & Larry Goldberg auction 123 (28 Sep 2021), lot 1334; ex The Stephan Fregger collection; Ex Agora Auctions; very rare; SOLD







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