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Caesarea Maritima, Judaea / Syria Palaestina, 1st - 3rd Century A.D., Lead Half Italian Litra Weight
A nearly identical specimen, from the same mold, was found near Caesarea Maritima in 1949 and is listed in the Corpus Inscriptionum Iudaeae/Palaestinae, Vol. II, Ameling, Cotton, Eck, et.al. on page 621. According to the authors, in Judaea, the term "litra" derived from the Roman word "libra" came to indicate local weight standards between the 1st and 2nd centuries CE. Therefore the word Iταλικη (Italica) was added whenever the Roman standard was intended. This weight is inscribed to indicate it is half an Italian litra. It is about 8 grams short of the standard but it probably originally had an handle attached that would have made it close to the appropriate weight. Around the end of the 3rd century CE, local standards were replaced entirely by the Roman system and the descriptive word Iταλικη was no longer necessary.AS96251. Corpus Inscriptionum Iudaeae/Palaestinae, Vol. II, p. 621 (nearly identical specimen from the same mold), VF, roughly oval shape, probably missing handle at the top, weight 153.5 g, maximum diameter 87x43 mm, obverse ITA/ΛIK/H H/MI Λ/ITPA (half an Italian litra) in six lines; reverse blank; from The Jimi Berlin Caesarea Collection; surface find 1974 Caesarea Maritima; very rare; $380.00 SALE |PRICE| $342.00
Roman, Bronze Repousse Plaque with Centaur Holding a Bow, Lorica Sqaumata Armor Plate(?), c. 1st - 3rd Century B.C.
Likely used in some legionary application; perhaps as a lorica squamata legionary armor plate segment. AA59779. Roman, bronze repousse, 1.75 x 1.75 inches, c. 1st - 3rd century A.D.; sheet bronze hammered from behind in repousse technique to raise the figure of a centaur holding a bow, remains of two rivet holes where it was attached, tear on body, rare and interesting; from a New Jersey collection; $320.00 SALE |PRICE| $288.00
Lot of 12 Roman Republic Lead Glans Sling-Bullets, 1st Century B.C.
According to the contemporary report of Vegatius, Republican slingers had an accurate range of up to six hundred feet. The best sling ammunition was cast from lead. For a given mass, lead, being very dense, offered the minimum size and therefore minimum air resistance. Also, lead sling-bullets were small and difficult to see in flight. In some cases, the lead would be cast in a simple open mold made by pushing a finger, thumb, or sharpened stick into sand and pouring molten metal into the hole. The flat top end could later be carved to a matching shape. More frequently, they were cast in two-part molds. Sling-bullets were made in a variety of shapes including an ellipsoidal form closely resembling an acorn; possibly the origin of the Latin word for lead sling-bullet: glandes plumbeae (literally leaden acorns) or simply glandes (meaning acorns, singular glans). The most common shape by far was biconical, resembling the shape of an almond or an American football. Why the almond shape was favored is unknown. Possibly there was some aerodynamic advantage, but it seems equally likely that there was a more prosaic reason, such as the shape being easy to extract from a mold, or that it will rest in a sling cradle with little danger of rolling out. Almond-shaped lead sling-bullets were typically about 35 millimeters (1.4 in) long and about 20 millimeters (0.8 in) wide.LT96131. Lot of 12 large almond shape lead sling bullets, c. 50g, 33 - 44mm long, workshop made, cast in a two part mold, found in Spain, the actual sling bullets in the photo; $240.00 SALE |PRICE| $216.00
Roman - Byzantine, Italy, Bronze Acorn Steelyard Pendant Weight, c. 1st to 7th century A.D.
Steelyards with acorn shaped counterweights were in use from the 1st century A.D. to the late Roman and Byzantine times. This weight is close to a very light Byzantine pound (285g) (cf. Ballance et al. 1989, 134). See Waclawik, M. "A bronze steelyard with an acorn-shaped counterweight from the Paphos Agora" in Studies in Art and Civilization 20 (Krakow, 2016) (PDF Available) for a similar but larger (405.5g) acorn weight and steelyard. The article notes that another similar scale and acorn weight was found at Pompeii.LT96147. Bronze weight, Romano-Byzantine acorn steelyard pendant weight, 280.7g, 62mm tall, 33mm maximum diameter, part of loop missing otherwise complete and intact, light corrosion, light encrustation, $240.00 SALE |PRICE| $216.00
Olbia, Sarmatia, c. 5th Century B.C.
Small cast dolphins were cast in Olbia, beginning 550 - 525 B.C., first as sacrificial objects for worship of Apollo and later as a form of currency.GA96585. Bronze cast dolphin, cf. SNG BM 369 ff., SNG Stancomb 339, SNG Pushkin 21 ff., SNG Cop 69 (all with normal ΘY reverse); 0.828g, 17.4mm long, VF, green patina, earthen encrustations, nose chipped, Olbia (Parutino, Ukraine) mint, c. 5th Century B.C.; obverse dolphin with raised dorsal fin, no tail; reverse YΘ (retrograde ΘY); very rare with retrograde reverse; $110.00 SALE |PRICE| $99.00
Roman, Large Iron Borer or File, 1st - 3rd Century A.D.
Another piece from the same group as this borer was dated by the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to 120 A.D. with a probable range of 80 A.D. - 160 A.D. Testing was done using an innovative technique which measures the carbon isotope ratio of the trace carbon in the iron. This carbon comes from the wood used in the production of the iron which must be of essentially the same age as the tool itself. Results were published in the journal, Radiocarbon, Summer 2001. AE61804. Roman borer, cf. Petrie, 'Tools and Weapons', pl. LXV, 40; 7 inches, indent at one end for attaching handle, $80.00 SALE |PRICE| $72.00
Roman, Bronze Ring-Key, 2nd - 4th Century A.D.
NEW Roman ring-keys were usually worn on belt or string, or carried in a purse, not worn on the finger, and were usually used to open a strongbox or cabinet. Roman ring keys were made of bronze, brass or iron. Pollio notes many ring-keys identified as Roman [in online sales] are actually medieval and replicas and fakes exist.AS79097. Milovanivic-Mrdjic type II/1, fig. 6 & pl. 2, 36; Guiraud type 5a; Pollio p. 63, complete and intact, rough corrosion, Roman bronze ring-key, 32mm maximum length; $80.00 SALE |PRICE| $72.00
Roman-Byzantine, Bronze Disk Nomisma(?) Weight, c. 350 - 650 A.D.
Concentric circles disk weights are not rare, but they are still not well classified or understood. The flans are cast or made from coins. The concentric rings or circles on the face can be cast or turned. The back is often flat, sometimes with evidence of filing and sometimes with scratches from use. Grooves on the reverse may have been used to adjust the weight. Whether the number of rings represents a kind of coding for the indication of weight has been a subject of discussion but the answer is unresolved. They are often described as game pieces but that is unlikely, even if the same shapes carved from bone have been proven to be Roman game pieces.MA96723. cf. Weber Byzantinische 127, Hendin Weights -, weight 4.285 g, maximum diameter 16.46 mm, die axis 0o, obverse concentric circles around a central depression (appear to be lathe cut); reverse single groove across the diameter; $45.00 SALE |PRICE| $40.50