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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Themes & Provenance| ▸ |History| ▸ |Historic Women||View Options:  |  |  |   

Women on Ancient Coins
The Triumvirs, Mark Antony and Cleopatra, c. Autumn 34 B.C.

|Cleopatra| |VII|, |The| |Triumvirs,| |Mark| |Antony| |and| |Cleopatra,| |c.| |Autumn| |34| |B.C.||tessera|
This lead seal clearly copies the portrait of Cleopatra VII as represented on the denarius type RRC 543/1 - everything from the countenance of the face, the hairstyle, and the drapery matches closely. The seal is made to a much higher standard than is usual with lead tesserae - it may have been struck from an unknown coin die - and the presence of the caduceus may relate to the cult of Isis. -- Andrew McCabe
SH95312. Lead tessera, apparently unpublished, but cf. Crawford 543/1 for a similar portrait, VF, brown patina with touches of red, weight 6.491 g, maximum diameter 21.7 mm, c. autumn 34 B.C.; obverse diademed and draped female bust right (Cleopatra?), winged caduceus before; reverse blank; ex CNG e-sale 458 (18 Dec 2019), lot 305; ex Andrew McCabe Collection, ex Marc de Cock (Belgium); $720.00 (€590.40)
 


Julia Mamaea, Augusta 13 March 222 - February or March 235 A.D.

|Julia| |Mamaea|, |Julia| |Mamaea,| |Augusta| |13| |March| |222| |-| |February| |or| |March| |235| |A.D.||denarius|
Describing this coin "as-found" does not mean recently found. This coin, part of a family collection assembled over generations, was found long ago. Silver denarii sold as found with their natural dark toning are rare. Very often the toning is uneven and unattractive and the coins are cleaned to remove it. This coin and others from the find were clearly an exception and its attractive toning has been left intact for decades and should never be removed.
RS94695. Silver denarius, RIC IV 358, RSC III 76, BMCRE VI 713, Hunter III 5, SRCV II 8216, Choice EF, very attractive as-found dark hoard toning, well centered, attractive portrait, small edge splits, weight 1.854 g, maximum diameter 19.6 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, c. 231 A.D.; obverse IVLIA MAMAEA AVG, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in waved horizontal ridges, looped plait at back of neck; reverse VENVS VICTRIX (victorious Venus), Venus standing half left, head left, helmet extended in right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand, grounded shield on left at feet against far side; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $360.00 (€295.20)
 


St. Helena, Augusta, 8 November 324 - c. 330 A.D., Mother of Constantine the Great

|Helena|, |St.| |Helena,| |Augusta,| |8| |November| |324| |-| |c.| |330| |A.D.,| |Mother| |of| |Constantine| |the| |Great||centenionalis|NEW
Edward Gibbon wrote of Antioch: "Fashion was the only law, pleasure the only pursuit, and the splendor of dress and furniture was the only distinction of the citizens of Antioch. The arts of luxury were honored, the serious and manly virtues were the subject of ridicule, and the contempt for female modesty and reverent age announced the universal corruption of the capital of the East." Antioch was, paradoxically, also an important hub of early Christianity. Late in 311, an embassy from Antioch presented themselves before Maximinus and requested permission to banish Christians from their city. Maximinus initially agreed, but in May 313 restored privileges and property to Christians.
RL97852. Billon centenionalis, RIC VII Antioch 82 (R4), LRBC I 1328, Cohen VII 12, SRCV 16628, Hunter V 14 var. (2nd officina), Choice aEF, excellent centering, attractive desert patina, light scratches, weight 3.272 g, maximum diameter 18.8 mm, die axis 0o, 10th officina, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 328 - 329 A.D.; obverse FL HELENA AVGVSTA, pearl-diademed, draped and mantled bust right, wearing necklace; reverse SECVRITAS REIPVBLICE (security of the Republic), Securitas standing half left, olive branch pointed down in right hand, raising pallium with left hand, •SMANTI in exergue; from a Norwegian collection; rare; $180.00 (€147.60)
 


Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Ptolemy II Philadelphos, 285 - 246 B.C.

|Ptolemaic| |Egypt|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |Ptolemy| |II| |Philadelphos,| |285| |-| |246| |B.C.||AE| |17|
Most finds of this type are from Bulgaria, suggesting a mint in Thrace. This type is found both with and without central depressions, indicating it was struck both before and after the coinage reform of 265 B.C., after which central depressions (dimples) became a feature of Ptolemaic coinage. This example is pre-reform.
GP86417. Bronze AE 17, Svoronos 351, SNG Cop 100, Lorber CPE B310 var. (post reform), SNG Milan -, Weiser -, Noeske -, BMC Ptolemies -, Malter -, aVF, obv. die break from nose to edge, rev. well centered on a tight flan, bumps, marks, corrosion, without central cavities, weight 5.472 g, maximum diameter 17.4 mm, die axis 270o, uncertain (Thracian?) mint, pre-reform, 285 - 265 B.C.; obverse veiled and diademed bust of Arsinoe II right; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ (King Ptolemy), eagle standing left on fulmen (thunderbolt), head left, wings open, ∆I over (AX monogram) left; see CNG e-auction 92 (23 Jun 2004), lot 64, for another specimen with the same obverse die break; rare; $140.00 (€114.80)
 


Julia Domna, Augusta, 194 - 8 April 217, Rabbathmoba, Arabia

|Roman| |Arabia|, |Julia| |Domna,| |Augusta,| |194| |-| |8| |April| |217,| |Rabbathmoba,| |Arabia||AE| |31|
Rabbathmoba (also called Areopolis or Aresopolis), on the Karak plateau, was probably the Biblical Ir-Moab conquered by Alexander Jannaeus. Its ruins are 18 kilometers north of Kerak in Jordan. Rabbath-Moba minted coins during the reigns of the Severan emperors between 193 and 222 A.D.
RY94929. Bronze AE 31, Sofaer 10 (same dies); cf. Spijkerman p. 268, 18 (dated PE); Meshorer City Coins 271; SNG ANS -; Rosenberger IV -, F, dark green patina, scratches, pit on reverse, irregular flan edge, weight 14.582 g, maximum diameter 31.0 mm, die axis 180o, Rabbathmoba (near Kerak, Jordan) mint, c. 210 - 211 A.D.; obverse IOYΛIA CEBACTH, draped bust right; reverse PABBAΘMΩBA, cult statue of Ares standing facing in military dress on a high base with pilasters, short sword erect in right hand, spear and round shield in left hand, base flanked on each side by a flaming altar, no date; from the Ray Nouri Collection; rare; $135.00 (€110.70)
 


Julia Mamaea, Augusta 13 March 222 - February or March 235 A.D.

|Julia| |Domna|, |Julia| |Mamaea,| |Augusta| |13| |March| |222| |-| |February| |or| |March| |235| |A.D.||sestertius|
Hera (Juno to the Romans) is the wife and one of three sisters of Zeus in the Olympian pantheon of Greek mythology and religion. Hera's mother is Rhea and her father Cronus. Her chief function was as the goddess of women and marriage. The cow, lion and the peacock were considered sacred to her. Portrayed as majestic and solemn, often enthroned, and crowned with the kalathos. Hera was known for her jealous and vengeful nature against Zeus' lovers and offspring, but also against mortals who crossed her. Paris earned Hera's hatred by choosing Aphrodite as the most beautiful goddess.
RB92608. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC IV SA683, BMCRE VI SA759, Hunter III 38, Cohen IV 33, SRCV II 8230, VF, rough green patina, patina flaking, porosity, earthen deposits, edge cracks, weight 21.460 g, maximum diameter 32.1 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, c. 231 A.D.; obverse IVLIA MAMAEA AVGVSTA, draped bust right, wearing stephane; reverse IVNO AVGVSTAE, Juno seated left, flower in right hand, swathed infant in crook of left arm, S C (senatus consulto) in exergue; from the Errett Bishop Collection; $120.00 (€98.40)
 


Julia Mamaea, Augusta 13 March 222 - February or March 235 A.D.

|Julia| |Mamaea|, |Julia| |Mamaea,| |Augusta| |13| |March| |222| |-| |February| |or| |March| |235| |A.D.||denarius|
Fecunditas (Latin: "fecundity, fertility") was the goddess of fertility. She was portrayed as a matron, sometimes holding a cornucopia or a hasta pura, with children in her arms or standing next to her.
RS94690. Silver denarius, RSC III 6, RIC IV 332, BMCRE VI 913, SRCV II 8208, Hunter III -, gVF, dark as-found hoard toning, excellent portrait, flow lines, tight flan, some light corrosion, small edge cracks, weight 1.334 g, maximum diameter 19.6 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, c. 232 A.D.; obverse IVLIA MAMAEA AVG, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in horizontal ridges, with looped plait at the back of neck; reverse FECVND AVGVSTAE, Fecunditas enthroned left, reaching out with her right hand to small boy standing before her nude with hands raised, left arm on chair; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $120.00 (€98.40)
 


Julia Domna, Augusta 194 - 8 April 217 A.D., Antiocheia, Pisidia

|Pisidia|, |Julia| |Domna,| |Augusta| |194| |-| |8| |April| |217| |A.D.,| |Antiocheia,| |Pisidia||AE| |22|
Tyche (Greek for luck; the Roman equivalent was Fortuna) was the presiding tutelary deity that governed the fortune and prosperity of a city, its destiny. Increasingly during the Hellenistic period, cities had their own specific iconic version of Tyche, wearing a mural crown (a crown like the walls of the city).
RP93151. Bronze AE 22, Krzyzanowska XVII/-; SNG BnF 1127 var. (same obv. die, rev. leg. var.); SNG PfPs 47 var. (same); BMC Lycia p. 181, 34 var. (rev. leg.), VF, dark green patina, minor earthen deposits, small edge splits, weight 6.118 g, maximum diameter 21.6 mm, die axis 180o, Antioch in Pisidia (Yalvac, Turkey) mint, 194 - 8 Apr 217 A.D.; obverse IVLIA AVGVSTA, draped bust right; reverse ANTIOCH GEN CL CA, Tyche (Genius of the colony) standing slightly left, head left, kalathos on head, wearing long chiton and peplos, branch in right hand, cornucopia in left hand; from the Errett Bishop Collection; $115.00 (€94.30)
 


Julia Mamaea, Augusta 13 March 222 - February or March 235 A.D.

|Julia| |Mamaea|, |Julia| |Mamaea,| |Augusta| |13| |March| |222| |-| |February| |or| |March| |235| |A.D.||denarius|
On 11 March 222, Elagabalus was assassinated, along with his mother, Julia Soaemias, by the Praetorian Guard. Their mutilated bodies were dragged through the streets of Rome before being thrown into the Tiber. Severus Alexander succeeded Elagabalus. He was only 13 years old, his mother, Julia Avita Mamaea, governed the Roman Empire with the help of Domitius Ulpianus and a council of 16 senators.
RS94688. Silver denarius, RIC IV 343, RSC III 35, BMCRE VI 43, Hunter III 1, SRCV II 8212, Choice gVF, dark as-found hoard toning, flow lines, minor flaw obverse left field, small edge cracks, weight 2.214 g, maximum diameter 19.3 mm, die axis 225o, Rome mint, 11 Mar - 31 Dec 222 A.D.; obverse IVLIA MAMAEA AVG, draped bust right, hair in waved horizontal ridges, looped plait at back of neck; reverse IVNO CONSERVATRIX, Juno standing slightly left, head left, veiled, patera in right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand, peacock standing left with head right at feet on left; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $110.00 (€90.20)
 


Salonina, Augusta 254 - c. September 268 A.D., Pergamon, Mysia

|Pergamon|, |Salonina,| |Augusta| |254| |-| |c.| |September| |268| |A.D.,| |Pergamon,| |Mysia||AE| |27|
Salonina was the wife of emperor Gallienus. A very beautiful and intelligent woman, she was extremely loyal to her husband. Opinion is divided as to whether she was murdered in the purge of Gallienus family after his murder, or if she survived.

Pergamon, Mysia was located to the northwest of the modern city of Bergama, Turkey, 16 miles (26 km) from the Aegean Sea on a promontory on the north side of the Caicus (Bakircay) River. It was the capital of the Kingdom of Pergamon under the Attalid dynasty, 281-133 B.C. Pergamon is cited in the book of Revelation as one of the seven churches of Asia.
RP97266. Bronze AE 27, Weber 5230, SNG BnF 2304 var. (...CE), SNG Tanrikulu 315 var. (same), SNG Cop -, SNGvA -; SNG Hunt -, BMC Mysia -, VF, well centered, a bit rough and porous, weight 6.447 g, maximum diameter 27.1 mm, die axis 0o, Pergamon (Bergama, Turkey) mint, 254 - c. Sep 268 A.D.; obverse KOP CAΛΩNEINA CEB, diademed and draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in ridges and in plait looped below ear up the back of head; reverse EΠI C AVP ∆AMA ΠEPΓAMH/NΩN - ΠPΩ - Γ - NEΩK (in two clockwise lines), Hygieia standing right, feeding snake held in her right hand, from philae in her left hand; ex Gorny & Mosch online auction 259 (20 Oct 2018), lot 3468; first specimen of this type handled by FORVM; rare; $110.00 (€90.20)
 




  



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