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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Roman Coins| ▸ |The Twelve Caesars||View Options:  |  |  |   

Roman Coins of the 12 Caesars
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; $6500.00 SALE PRICE $5850.00


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

|Nero|, |Nero,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.||sestertius|
One explanation for Nero's slight beard on this coin is that it is his "beard of mourning" for the death of his wife Poppaea. According to Suetonius, one day in the summer of 65, Poppaea quarreled fiercely with Nero over his spending too much time at the races. She was pregnant with her second child. In a fit of rage, Nero kicked her in the abdomen, killing her. The story of her death may have been a lie, part of a larger effort to denigrate Nero after his suicide. Certainly Poppaea was deeply mourned by Nero. During the mourning period, Nero may have followed Roman customs and not shaved his face. A similar light beard also occurs on some tetradrachms of Antioch dated 65 - 66 A.D.
SH110379. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I 138, BMCRE I 129, Mac Dowall WCN 128, Cohen I 18, BnF II -, Hunter I -, SRCV -, EF, superb portrait, full legends, attractive toning, bumps, light smoothing, weight 26.564 g, maximum diameter 35.6 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 65 A.D.; obverse NERO CLAVD CAESAR AVG GER P M TR P IMP P P (Nero Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus Pontifex Maximus Tribunicia Potestate Imperator Pater Patriae), laureate head left, short beard visible, no globe at point of bust; reverse ANNONA AVGVSTI CERES, Annona standing right, right hand on hip, cornucopia in left hand, facing Ceres enthroned left, veiled, feet on footstool, stalks of grain in right hand, torch in left hand; in center modius on garlanded altar, prow behind, S C (senatus consulto) in exergue; $3500.00 SALE PRICE $2800.00


Galba, 3 April 68 - 15 January 69 A.D., Ancient Counterfeit

|Galba|, |Galba,| |3| |April| |68| |-| |15| |January| |69| |A.D.,| |Ancient| |Counterfeit||denarius|
This coin is dedicated to Rome reborn, presumably due to the leadership of Galba. To Galba it seems rebirth primary concerned an attempt to restore state finances. To this end he undertook a number of unpopular measures, the most dangerous was his refusal to pay the praetorians the reward promised to them in his name. Galba scorned the notion that soldiers should be "bribed" for their loyalty. According to the historian Suetonius, Galba levied massive taxes against areas that were slow to receive him as emperor.
RS99191. Fouree silver plated denarius, cf. RIC I 43, BMCRE I 180, RSC II 211, Hunter I 68, SRCV I 2095 (official, solid silver, Tarraco mint, Apr - late 68 A.D., minor variations), VF, toned, small core exposures, scratches, bumps, weight 2.846 g, maximum diameter 17.8 mm, die axis 180o, unofficial, counterfeiter's mint, c. April 68 - 69 A.D.; obverse IMPERATO (sic) GALBA, laureate head right, globe at the point of neck; reverse ROMA RENASCENS (Rome Reborn), Roma advancing right, wearing helmet and military garb, Victory on globe presenting wreath in right hand, transverse spear in left hand; ex CNG e-auction 500 (22 Sep 2021), 735 (part of); ex Mercury Group Collection, ex Thomas Cederlind (20 Nov 2002) ; $490.00 SALE PRICE $392.00


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

|Vespasian|, |Vespasian,| |1| |July| |69| |-| |24| |June| |79| |A.D.,| |Judaea| |Capta||sestertius|
On 14 April 70 A.D. Titus surrounded Jerusalem. He allowed pilgrims to enter to celebrate Passover but this was a trap to put pressure on supplies of food and water; he refused to allow them to leave. On 10 May he began his assault on the walls. The third wall fell on 25 May. The second wall fell on 30 May. On 20 July Titus stormed the Temple Mount. On 4 August 70 A.D. Titus destroyed the Temple. The Jewish fast of Tisha B'Av mourns the Fall of Jerusalem annually on this date. This type celebrates the victory of Vespasian and Titus. Coins commemorating this event are referred to as "Judaea Capta" issues.
SH98839. Orichalcum sestertius, BnF II 490; Hendin 6530 (S); RIC II 159; BMCRE II p. 115, 532 ff., F, centered, rough, corrosion and pitting, weight 24.234 g, maximum diameter 33.8 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 71 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES VESPASIAN AVG P M TR P P P COS III, laureate bust right; reverse IVDAEA CAPTA, date palm tree in center, male captive on left standing right with hands bound behind his back, Jewess on right sitting right on cuirass propping her head with her left hand in attitude of mourning, shields flanking them, S C (senatus consulto) in exergue; from an Israeli collection, ex Elsen auction 143 (7 Dec 2019), lot 376; scarce; $450.00 SALE PRICE $360.00


Judaea, Pontius Pilate, Roman Prefect Under Tiberius, 26 - 36 A.D.

|Pontius| |Pilate|, |Judaea,| |Pontius| |Pilate,| |Roman| |Prefect| |Under| |Tiberius,| |26| |-| |36| |A.D.||prutah|
Pontius Pilate is chiefly known for the part he played in the trial and crucifixion of Jesus.
JD72795. Bronze prutah, Meshorer TJC 333g; Sofaer 49; Hendin 6371d, Fair, rough, reverse edge beveled, weight 1.966 g, maximum diameter 15.2 mm, die axis 0o, Jerusalem (or unofficial?) mint, 29 - 31 A.D.; obverse TIBEPIOY KAICAPOC (retrograde, counterclockwise), lituus (augural wand) curving left (reversed from the normal); reverse LIς in wreath; very rare; $400.00 SALE PRICE $320.00


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

|Vitellius|, |Vitellius,| |2| |January| |-| |20| |December| |69| |A.D.,| |Ancient| |Counterfeit||denarius|
"This refers to Vitellius' membership in the priestly college of the quindecimviri Sacris Faciundis, 'fifteen men for the conduct of sacred matters.' This body had care of the Sibylline prophecies and were famous for the opulence of their banquets, a feature of the priesthood which particularly appealed to the gluttonous emperor." -- David R. Sear, Roman Coins and Their Values
RS99193. Fouree silver plated denarius, cf. RIC I 109, RSC II 111, BMCRE I 39, BnF III 77, Hunter I 18, SRCV I 2201 (official, solid silver, Rome mint, legend variations), VF, toned, small plating breaks, tiny edge splits, weight 2.984 g, maximum diameter 18.1 mm, die axis 255o, unofficial, counterfeiter's mint, c. 69 A.D.; obverse A VITELLIVG GERM IMP AVO TR P (sic), laureate head right; reverse XV VIR CICR FAC (sic) (fifteen men for the conduct of sacred matters), tripod-lebes of Apollo, dolphin right on top, raven standing right on strut below lebes; ex CNG e-auction 500 (22 Sep 2021), 735 (part of); ex Mercury Group Collection, ex Mike Vosper (25 Jan 2005); $310.00 SALE PRICE $279.00


Domitian, 13 September 81 - 18 September 96 A.D., Ancient Counterfeit

|Domitian|, |Domitian,| |13| |September| |81| |-| |18| |September| |96| |A.D.,| |Ancient| |Counterfeit||denarius|
Minerva is the virgin Roman goddess of wisdom, justice, law, victory, poetry, music, medicine, commerce, weaving and strategy. Minerva is not a patron of violence such as Mars, but of defensive war only. From the second century B.C. onward, the Romans equated her with the Greek goddess Athena. Minerva is one of the three Roman deities in the Capitoline Triad, along with Jupiter and Juno. She is often depicted with her sacred creature, an owl usually named as the "owl of Minerva", which symbolized her association with wisdom and knowledge as well as, less frequently, the snake and the olive tree. Minerva is commonly depicted as tall with an athletic and muscular build, as well as wearing armour and carrying a spear. As the most important Roman goddess, she is highly revered, honored, and respected.
RS99197. Fouree silver plated denarius, cf. RIC II-1 787 (C2); BMCRE II 230; RSC II 292; BnF III 206; Hunter I 91; SRCV I - (official, solid silver, Rome mint, 95 - 96 A.D., gVF, light toning, light marks, flow lines, minor plating breaks, weight 3.027 g, maximum diameter 18.5 mm, die axis 180o, unofficial, counterfeiter's mint, c. 96 - 100 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES DOMIT AVG GERM P M TR P XV, laureate head right; reverse IM (sic) XXII COS XVII CENS P P P, Minerva advancing right, draped, wearing helmet with crest and aegis, brandishing javelin in right hand, round shield on left arm; ex CNG e-auction 500 (22 Sep 2021), 735 (part of); ex Mercury Group Collection; $180.00 SALE PRICE $162.00


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

|Agrippa| |II|, |Judaean| |Kingdom,| |Herod| |Agrippa| |II,| |c.| |49| |-| |95| |A.D.,| |for| |Domitian||full| |unit|
We use the dating provided by RPC Online, which adopts 60/61 A.D. for year 1 of the era used by Agrippa II. This solves a number of issues with previous dating schemes, but adds the oddity of a large number of issues of posthumous coinage for Vespasian and Titus. This coin struck for Titus, for example; dated year 30 using this era is 89/90 A.D. Titus died in 81 B.C.
JD98848. Bronze full unit, Hendin 6328 (RR); RPC Online II 2296; BMC Palestine p. 243, 56; SNG ANS 315; Meshorer TJC 179; Sofaer p. 268 & pl. 218, 260, gF, well centered, earthen encrustation, edge split, weight 10.858 g, maximum diameter 26.2 mm, die axis 0o, Caesarea Paneas (Banias, Golan Heights) mint, 94 - 95 A.D.; obverse AYTOKPA ∆OMITIA KAICAP A ΓEPMANI (Emperor Domitian Caesar Germanicus), laureate head of Titus right; reverse Tyche-Demeter standing slightly left, head left, stalks of barley in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, ETOY - EΛ BA / AΓPI-ΠΠA (year 35, King Agrippa) in two lines divided across the field below center; from an Israeli collection; rare; $200.00 SALE PRICE $160.00


Julia Titi, Augusta c. 79 - 89 A.D., Unpublished Mule

|Julia| |Titi|, |Julia| |Titi,| |Augusta| |c.| |79| |-| |89| |A.D.,| |Unpublished| |Mule||dupondius|
This coin is an extremely rare apparently unpublished mule of two very similar rare varieties from the same issue. This coin has the obverse of RIC II-1 T395 with Julia's hair in a coiled bun at the back. That type has the reverse legend CONCORDIA AVG. The obverse of RIC II-1 T394, with this CONCORD AVGVST reverse legend, has a different portrait with a smaller bun lower on the back of her head.
RB110098. Orichalcum dupondius, RIC II-1 T395/394 (R/R2); BnF III T268/T269; cf. Cohen I 3 (CONCORDIA AVG); Hunter I 5 (same); SRCV I 2616 (CONCORDIA AVG); BMCRE II -, aF, green patina, weight 10.442 g, maximum diameter 28.0 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, struck under Titus, 80 - 81 A.D.; obverse IVLIA IMP T AVG F AVGVSTA, draped bust right, hair piled high in the front, coiled in a bun at the back; reverse CONCORD AVGVST, Concordia seated left, patera in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, S - C (senatus consulto) in exergue; from the Shawn Caza Collection, ex Kunst-und Antikmarkt Am Hof (Vienna, Austria); this coin is an extremely rare apparently unpublished mule of two very similar rare varieties from the same issue; zero sales of this mule type are recorded on Coin Archives in the last two decades; extremely rare; $200.00 SALE PRICE $160.00


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

|Other| |Phrygia|, |Nero,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.,| |Prymnessos,| |Phrygia||AE| |21|NEW
Prymnessos in central Phrygia on a junction of important trading-routes between Synnada and Docimaeum. Today it is Sln, Turkey.
RP110213. Bronze AE 21, RPC Online I 3207 (14 spec.), vA Phryg. II 102231, SNGvA 2308, Nice aVF, green patina, highlighting earthen deposits, light marks, weight 6.718 g, maximum diameter 20.5 mm, die axis 0o, Prymnessos (near Sln, Turkey) mint, 63 - 68 A.D.; obverse NEPΩNA KAIΣAPA ΠPYMNHΣΣEIΣ (counterclockwise from lower right), laureate head right; reverse EΠI TI IOYΛIOY ΠPOKΛOY (struck under Ti. Ioulios Proklos [magistrate], clockwise from upper right), Dikaiosyne standing left, scales in right hand, two ears of grain in left hand; this is the first specimen of this type handled by FORVM, Coin Archives records only one specimen of the type at auction in the last two decades; rare; $170.00 SALE PRICE $153.00




  







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