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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Themes & Provenance| ▸ |Personifications| ▸ |Peace||View Options:  |  |  | 

Peace (Pax the Goddess of Peace)

Ancient rulers often used coins to send their messages to the people. In the late Roman Empire, particularly when threats were most ominous, coins frequently boasted of the peace and security brought by Rome, the army and the emperor. From our vantage we can see these coins as propaganda and lies, and as failed promises and doomed dreams.

Vitellius, 2 January - 20 December 69 A.D.

|Vitellius|, |Vitellius,| |2| |January| |-| |20| |December| |69| |A.D.||sestertius|
A.D. 69 is known as "The Year of the Four Emperors," in which four emperors, Galba, Otho, Vitellius, and Vespasian, ruled in a remarkable succession. Vitellius was declared emperor by his troops and after defeating Otho, he took Rome. But he spent more time at the banquet table then ruling. Vespasian was also declared emperor by his troops and the Danube legions. Vespasian prevailed. Vitellius was slain. His body was dragged through the streets of Rome and dumped in the Tiber.
SH110376. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I 118, BnF III 92, Cohen I 67, SRCV I 2205, BMCRE I -, EF, choice obv. with excellent portrait, nice style rev., dark green patina, bumps, weight 26.087 g, maximum diameter 35.7 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, Jul - Sep 69 A.D.; obverse A VITELLIVS GERMANICVS IMP AVG P M TR P, laureate and draped bust right, seen from side; reverse PAX AVGVSTI (to the peace of the emperor), Pax standing left, olive branch in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field below center; ex Harlan Berk sale 210 (01 Apr 2020), lot 292; very rare; $5850.00 SALE PRICE $5265.00


Nero, 13 October 54 - 9 June 68 A.D.

|Nero|, |Nero,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.||sestertius|NEW
The reverse legend translates, "The gates of Janus' temple are closed because peace of the Roman people is set on both land and sea." On the rare occasions when Rome was not at war the doors of the 'Twin Janus' were ceremonially closed, an event Nero commemorated extensively on the coinage of 65 - 67 A.D. -- Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. 1 by David R. Sear
SH110266. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I 265, BMCRE I 160, Cohen I 144, Mac Dowall WCN 153, BnF I 73 (head right), SRCV I 1958 var. (same), aVF, near centered, weight 24.989 g, maximum diameter 33.8 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 65 A.D.; obverse NERO CLAVD CAESAR AVG GER P M TR P IMP P P, laureate head left; reverse PACE P R TERRA MARIQ PARTA IANVM CLVSIT, view of the Temple of Janus from the front left corner, temple front on the right with garland over closed doors within arch, the left side of the temple to the left with long latticed window, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field; ex Inasta auction 101 (25 Jun 2022), lot 747; $650.00 SALE PRICE $585.00


Gallienus, August 253 - September 268 A.D.

|Gallienus|, |Gallienus,| |August| |253| |-| |September| |268| |A.D.||antoninianus|
Pax, regarded by the ancients as a goddess, was worshiped not only at Rome but also at Athens. Her altar could not be stained with blood. Claudius began the construction of a magnificent temple to her honor, which Vespasian finished, in the Via Sacra. The attributes of Peace are the hasta pura, the olive branch, the cornucopia, and often the caduceus. Sometimes she is represented setting fire to a pile of arms.
RA94196. Billon antoninianus, Gbl MIR 603a, Cunetio 1193, RSC IV 727, RIC V-1 S256, SRCV III -, Hunter IV -, gVF, much silvering, edge a bit ragged, weight 3.079 g, maximum diameter 23.1 mm, die axis 0o, 4th officina, Rome mint, 9th emission, c. 265 - 267 A.D.; obverse GALLIENVS AVG, radiate head right; reverse PAX AVG (the peace of the Emperor), Pax standing slightly left, olive branch in right hand, transverse scepter in left hand, ∆ left; $50.00 SALE PRICE $45.00


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

|Hadrian|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |A.D.||aureus|
The rabbit on the reverse is in reference to the Roman province of Hispania Baetica and the issue is an appeal for the aid of the gods as during Hadrian's first travels around the empire, leaving Rome in 121. On this example, Minerva is shown in her "peace-giving" aspect versus her more often seen guise of war.
SH34690. Gold aureus, Calico 1309 var. (obv legend break), RIC II 70 var. (same plus portrait and spear vice scepter); BMCRE III 117 - 118 var. (same); SRCV II -, VF, some circulation marks, weight 7.129 g, maximum diameter 19.7 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 119 - 122 A.D.; obverse IMP CAESAR TRAIAN HA-DRIANVS AVG, laureate and draped bust right from behind; reverse P M TR P COS III, Minerva standing facing, helmeted head left, long scepter in left hand, right hand pointing to Spanish olive tree on left, rabbit right at the base of the tree; ex Munzhandlung Basel, 6 March 1936 (Dr. H St. S & Prince Waldeck); very rare; 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


Vespasian, 1 July 69 - 24 June 79 A.D.

|Vespasian|, |Vespasian,| |1| |July| |69| |-| |24| |June| |79| |A.D.||aureus|
In 72 A.D. the Roman governor Lucius Flavius Silva laid siege to Masada, a desert fortress, the last outpost of Jewish rebels after the First Jewish Revolt ended in 70 A.D. Legio X Fretensis surrounded the mountain fortress with a 7-mile long siege wall and built a rampart of stones and beaten earth against the western approach. In the spring of 73 A.D., when defeat became imminent, 960 Zealots under the leadership of Eleazar ben Ya'ir committed mass suicide.
SH64148. Gold aureus, Calico I 656, RIC II 1180, BMCRE II 403, Cohen I 284, F, ding at 12 o, weight 7.128 g, maximum diameter 13.9 mm, die axis 270o, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, c. 72 - 73 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES VESPAS AVG P M TR P IIII P P COS IIII, laureate head right; reverse PACI AVGVSTI, winged Pax-Nemesis advancing right, pulling out a fold of drapery below her neck with her right hand, holding caduceus downward in left over snake at feet; ex January 2013 N.Y.I.N.C Auction, lot 2033; SOLD


Nero, 13 October 54 - 9 June 68 A.D.

|Nero|, |Nero,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.||sestertius|
The reverse legend translates, "The gates of Janus' temple are closed because peace of the Roman people is set on both land and sea." On the rare occasions when Rome was not at war the doors of the 'Twin Janus' were ceremonially closed, an event Nero commemorated extensively on the coinage of 65 - 67 A.D. -- Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. 1 by David R. Sear
SH45882. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I 354, BnF I 429, Mac Dowall WCN 171, Cohen I 139, BMCRE I -, Hunter I -, SRCV I -, VF, exceptional style, scratches in fields, weight 25.185 g, maximum diameter 35.4 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, c. 67 A.D.; obverse IMP NERO CLAVD CAESAR AVG GERM P M TR P XIII PP, laureate head right; reverse PACE P R TERRA MARIQ PARTA IANVM CLVSIT, lateral view of the Temple of Janus with garland over closed doors within arch, temple front on the left, the right side of the temple with long latticed window to the right, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking at sides; ex A H Baldwin & Sons (Fixed Price List Winter 2008, 1600), ex Mnzhandlung Ritter; 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


Nero, 13 October 54 - 9 June 68 A.D.

|Nero|, |Nero,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.||sestertius|
The reverse legend translates, "The gates of Janus' temple are closed because peace of the Roman people is set on both land and sea." On the rare occasions when Rome was not at war the doors of the 'Twin Janus' were ceremonially closed, an event Nero commemorated extensively on the coinage of 65 - 67 A.D. -- Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. 1 by David R. Sear
SL96449. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I 583, Mac Dowall WCN 475, BMCRE I -, Cohen I -, Hunter I -, SRCV I -, NGC AU, strike 5/5, surface 2/5, scuff (5745271-004), weight 30.31 g, maximum diameter 35.0 mm, die axis 180o, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, c. 66 - 67 A.D.; obverse IMP NERO CAESAR AVG P MAX TR P P P, laureate head right, globe at the point of the bust; reverse PACE P R TERRA MARIQ PARTA IANVM CLVSIT, view of the Temple of Janus from the front left corner, temple front on the right with garland over closed doors within arch, the left side of the temple to the left with long latticed window, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field; ex Heritage NYINC Sale 3081 (12 Jan 2020), lot 30178; ex Roma e-auction 4 (29 Nov 2018), lot 733; ex Private European Collection; NGC| Lookup; SOLD


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

|Otho|, |Otho,| |15| |January| |69| |-| |17| |April| |69| |A.D.||denarius|
Otho first appears as one of the most reckless and extravagant of the young nobles who surrounded Nero. This friendship was brought to an end in 58 A.D. At her insistence, Otho introduced his beautiful wife, Poppaea Sabina, to the Emperor. Poppaea soon became Nero's mistress, divorced Otho, and had Nero send Otho away as governor to the remote province of Lusitania. Otho remained in Lusitania for the next ten years, administering the province with a moderation unusual at the time. When in 68 A.D. his neighbor, the future Emperor Galba, the governor of Hispania Tarraconensis, rose in revolt against Nero, Otho accompanied him to Rome. Resentment toward Nero may have impelled him to this course, but he was soon inspired by personal ambition.
SH41730. Silver denarius, RIC I 10 (R3), RSC II 15, BMCRE I 19, BnF III 11, Hunter I 10, SRCV I 2163, aVF, toned, weight 3.464 g, maximum diameter 18.8 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, Jan - Feb 69 A.D.; obverse IMP 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; very rare; SOLD







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