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Founded by Greek colonists in the 8th century B.C., Messina was originally called Zancle, from the Greek meaning "scythe" because of the shape of its natural harbor (though a legend attributes the name to King Zanclus). In the early 5th century BC, Anaxilas of Rhegium renamed it in honor of the Greek city Messene.SH95922. Silver tetradrachm, Caltabiano Series IIB, 71 (D39'/R37); SNG ANS 319; SNG Cop 390; SNG Tübingen 605; SNG München 629; BMC Sicily p. 100, 11; HGC 2 779, Choice aVF, toned, well centered on a tight flan, bumps and scratches, die wear, weight 17.355 g, maximum diameter 26.5 mm, die axis 0o, Messana mint, c. 478 - 476 B.C.; obverse bearded man seated driving biga of mules walking right, knees drawn up, reins in both hands, goad in left hand, laurel leaf in exergue; reverse MESSA-NIO-N (counterclockwise from lower left, S's inverted), hare springing right; from the Errett Bishop Collection; ex Bowers & Ruddy Galleries auction; Dr. Richard P. Ariagno Collection Part II (9-11 Jun 1980), lot 39; $950.00 (€874.00)
Germanicus, b. 24 May 15 B.C. - d. 10 Oct 19 A.D., Issued by Caligula
NEW This type was issued by Caligula in honor of his deceased father. Germanicus Caesar was the son of Tiberius' brother Drusus Sr. and Antonia the daughter of Mark Antony and Octavia. He distinguished himself on the battlefield many times, most notably in Germania where he inflicted serious defeats on the barbarian tribes and recovered the legionary standards lost in the catastrophic Varus disaster. He was chosen Tiberius' successor, but died of an unknown cause. His tremendous popularity helped his son Caius (Caligula) obtain the throne after Tiberius died.RB97745. Orichalcum dupondius, RIC I Gaius 57, BMCRE I Gaius 93, BnF II Caligula 140, Hunter I Gaius 37, Cohen I 7, SRCV I 1820, gF, scattered mild pitting, weight 12.208 g, maximum diameter 29.0 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 37 - 41 A.D.; obverse Germanicus in slow quadriga right, bare-headed, wearing paludamentum, eagle-tipped scepter in left hand, chariot ornamented with Victory and wreath, GERMANICVS / CAESAR in two lines above horses; reverse Germanicus standing left, bare-headed, wearing cuirass and short tunic, cloak over left arm, right leg bent, raising right hand, aquila (legionary eagle) in left hand, SIGNIS - RECEPT / DEVICTIS - GERM (standards recovered from the defeated Germans) in two divided lines across the field at center, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking low; ex Roma Numismatics e-sale 78 (17 Dec 2020), lot 1296, ex Lucernae prima auction (2 Jun 2020), lot 212; $500.00 (€460.00)
Roman Republic, M. Volteius M. f., 78 B.C.
In ancient Roman religion and mythology, Liber (Latin: "the free one"), also known as Liber Pater ("the free Father"), was a god of viticulture and wine, fertility and freedom. He was a patron deity of Rome's plebeians and was part of their Aventine Triad. His festival of Liberalia (March 17) became associated with free speech and the rights attached to coming of age. His cult and functions were increasingly associated with Romanised forms of the Greek Dionysus-Bacchus, whose mythology he came to share.RR97224. Silver denarius, Crawford 385/3, cf. BMCRR Rome 3160, Sydenham 776, RSC I Volteia 3, Russo RBW 1416, SRCV I 314 (only Crawford list the lizard control symbol), gVF, obverse well centered, bumps and marks, reverse off center, tiny edge cracks, weight 4.417 g, maximum diameter 16.7 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 78 B.C.; obverse Wreathed head of Liber or Bacchus right; reverse M VOLTEI M F, Ceres driving biga of serpents right, holding two torches, lizard head upward (control symbol) behind; ex Numismatik Naumann auction 90 (7 Jun 2020), lot 427; $220.00 (€202.40)
Roman Republic, L. Antestius Gragulus, c. 136 B.C.
This was the first type to use the X value mark (ligate XVI = 16 asses).
L. Antestius Gragulus was a moneyer in 136 B.C., a magistrate, responsible for the production of the Roman coinage. Magistrates were not simple mint workers (monetarii), they were officials who controlled the process, including the design on the coins themselves. During the Roman Republic, moneyers were called tresviri aere argento auro flando feriundo, literally "three men for casting (and) striking bronze, silver (and) gold (coins)."RR97226. Silver denarius, Crawford 238/1, Sydenham 451, RSC I Antestia 9, BMCRR Rome 976, Russo RBW 980, SRCV I 115, gVF, nicely toned, flow lines, uneven strike with unstruck area on obverse and reverse, tiny edge splits, weight 3.922 g, maximum diameter 20.1 mm, die axis 315o, Rome mint, c. 136 B.C.; obverse head of Roma left in winged helmet, crest with griffin head, peaked visor in three pieces, wearing earring and necklace, X below chin; reverse Jupiter in a fast quadriga right, thunderbolt in right hand, long lotus topped scepter and reins in left hand, L•ANTES (ANTE ligate) below horses, ROMA in exergue; ex Auktionshaus Münzhandlung Sonntag; $220.00 (€202.40)
Kyme, Aiolis, 2nd Century B.C.
The types on this coin are unusual. In a recent auction, Nomos AG noted the male figure in the chariot is not only wearing military garb but on some specimens also appears to have a laurel wreath on his head (not visible on this coin). If he is laureate, he could be a Roman emperor, which would date this type to the 1st or early 2nd century A.D. We agree, the long accepted Hellenistic date for this type could be wrong. GB96107. Bronze AE 16, SNG Cop 113; SNGvA 1644; SNG Munchen 512; BMC Troas p. 113, 96, aVF, slightly rough, die damage reverse center, obverse off center, weight 3.797 g, maximum diameter 16.4 mm, die axis 0o, Kyme (near Nemrut Limani, Turkey) mint, 2nd century B.C.; obverse Artemis standing right, long torch in left hand, quiver and bow on back, clasping right hands with Amazon Kyme, Kyme standing left, transverse scepter in left hand, K-Y flanking the figures; reverse two figures in a slow quadriga right, draped female (Kyme?) in front holding reins, male behind, wearing military dress, holding a long transverse spear; $60.00 (€55.20)