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

Roman Coins of the 12 Caesars
Judaea, Valerius Gratus, Roman Prefect Under Tiberius, 15 - 26 A.D., Cohors II Italica Civium Romanorum Countermark

|Valerius| |Gratus|, |Judaea,| |Valerius| |Gratus,| |Roman| |Prefect| |Under| |Tiberius,| |15| |-| |26| |A.D.,| |Cohors| |II| |Italica| |Civium| |Romanorum| |Countermark||prutah|
Now there was a certain man at Caesarea named Cornelius, a centurion of what was called the Italian cohort...(Acts 10:1).

Spijkermann was the first to publish a countermarked prutah, also a Valerius Gratus coin, in 1963. Lnnqvist published the first detailed study, "New Vistas on the Countermarked Coins of the Roman Prefects of Judaea" in INJ 12. Kogon published an update, "Countermarks on Small Judean Coins" in INR 7, identifying 47 known specimens of countermarked prutah of all types. Both papers are available online. Lnnqvist interpreted CΠ in the countermark as an abbreviation for the Greek word σπειρα, referring to a Roman legionary tactical unit, a cohors. The use of CΠ referring to a cohors is also known from an inscription. He suggested that the countermarks were applied in 36 - 37 A.D. in Jerusalem to mark the coins as pay for the soldiers of the cohors II Italica civium Romanorum.
JD111613. Bronze prutah, Hendin 6369a (same c/m); RPC I 4966.8-11 (same); Meshorer TJC 330 (same); countermark: Kogon 3b, Howgego GIC 386, coin: Fair, countermark: VF, weight 2.195 g, maximum diameter 17.7 mm, die axis 0o, Jerusalem mint, 24 - 25 A.D., c/m: 36 - 37/41 A.D.; obverse TIB / KAI/CAP (Greek: Tiberius Caesar) in three lines within wreath tied at base with an X; reverse palm branch curving right, flanked by IOY-ΛIA (Greek: Julia = Tiberius' mother Livia) above L - IA (year 11 of Tiberius) in two lines across field; countermark: palm frond flanked by C-Π within 8mm circular punch; from the collection of a Texas clergyman, ex J. P. Fontanille Collection (2016); rare countermark; $1600.00 (1472.00)


Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D., Roman Egypt

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Claudius,| |25| |January| |41| |-| |13| |October| |54| |A.D.,| |Roman| |Egypt||drachm|
RPC I quotes Walkers surface analysis of Claudius billon at 21 - 26% silver, a significant drop from the 30% silver for those of Tiberius.

The ancients did not all agree on the attributes of Serapis. A passage in Tacitus affirms that many recognized in this god, Aesculapius, imputing healing to his intervention; some thought him identical with Osiris, the oldest deity of the Egyptians; others regarded him as Jupiter, possessing universal power; but by most he was believed to be the same as Pluto, the "gloomy" Dis Pater of the infernal regions. The general impression of the ancients seems to have been that by Serapis, was to be understood the beginning and foundation of things. Julian II consulted the oracle of Apollo for the purpose of learning whether Pluto and Serapis were different gods; and he received for an answer that Jupiter-Serapis and Pluto were one and the same divinity.
SH110653. Billon drachm, RPC I 5136 (4 spec.); BMC Alexandria p. , 78; Kampmann 12.25; Emmett 76/3 (R4); Geissen -; Dattari -; SNG Hunterian -, F, dark patina, earthen deposits, scratches, porosity, weight 3.330 g, maximum diameter 16.0 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 42 - 43 A.D.; obverse TI KΛ KA CE AY, laureate head right, L Γ (year 3) right; reverse draped bust of Serapis right, kalathos on head; the best of this type known to FORVM; very rare; $1250.00 (1150.00)


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

|Nero|, |Nero,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.||sestertius|
A decursio was a military exercise, by which Roman soldiers were taught to make long marches in a given time, under arms and without quitting their ranks. They sometimes consisted of a mock fight between two divisions. Augustus and subsequently Hadrian ordered that the infantry and cavalry were to march out three times a month ten miles from the camp and ten miles back, fully armed and equipped. Decursio on this coin probably refers Nero's participation in mock military maneuvers in the circus.
SL111603. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I 168 (S); BMCRE I p. 226, 142; BnF II -; Hunter I -; SRCV I -, ANACS VF30 (7432075, says Lugdunum mint in error), dark spots are where the plastic holder is in contact with the coin, weight 27.15 g, maximum diameter 35.5 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, c. 66 A.D.; obverse NERO CLAVD CAESAR AVG GER P M TR P IMP P P, laureate head left; reverse DECVRSIO, Nero and a soldier on horseback prancing right, Nero bear headed, wearing cuirass and short tunic, and holds spear in right hand, soldier, on far side and slightly behind, holds vexillum in right over shoulder, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking high across field; ex Classical Coins, ANACS| Verify; $1080.00 (993.60)


Agrippina Senior, b. 14 B.C., d. 33 A.D., Wife of Germanicus, Mother of Caligula and Agrippa Jr.

|Agrippina| |Sr.|, |Agrippina| |Senior,| |b.| |14| |B.C.,| |d.| |33| |A.D.,| |Wife| |of| |Germanicus,| |Mother| |of| |Caligula| |and| |Agrippa| |Jr.||sestertius|
The carpentum was a type of state carriage, with two wheels, and commonly drawn by a pair of mules. The privilege of riding in a carpentum in public festivals was sometimes granted to females of the imperial family. Agrippina's, carriage on the reverse of this coin, was very richly adorned with painting or carving on the panels, and the cover was supported by caryatides on the corners. When Caligula instituted games and other solemnities in honor of his deceased mother Agrippina, her carpentum went in the procession (Suet. Calig. 13).
RB112052. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I Gaius 55, BMCRE I Caligula 81, Cohen I 1, BnF II Caligula 128, Hunter I Gaius 36, SRCV I 1827, VF, broad flan, green patina with some porosity and an area of encrustation, weight 25.607 g, maximum diameter 36.1 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, posthumous, 37 - 41 A.D.; obverse AGRIPPINA M F MAT C CAESARIS AVGVSTI, draped bust right, her hair tied in queue in back and one lock falling down side of neck; reverse S P Q R / MEMORIAE / AGRIPPINAE, carpentum drawn by two mules left; ex CGB Numismatique; $990.00 (910.80)


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
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 (598.00)


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.
RB112056. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I 138, BMCRE I 129, Mac Dowall WCN 128, Cohen I 18, BnF II -, Hunter I -, SRCV -, aVF/F, brown tone, corrosion, a few pits, weight 27.266 g, maximum diameter 33.5 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; $300.00 (276.00)


Augustus, 16 January 27 B.C. - 19 August 14 A.D., Uncertain Mint, Anatolia or Syria

|Roman| |Asia|, |Augustus,| |16| |January| |27| |B.C.| |-| |19| |August| |14| |A.D.,| |Uncertain| |Mint,| |Anatolia| |or| |Syria||AE| |27|
The mint, the quaestor who struck this type, and even the identity of the person in the portrait remain uncertain. The type has previously been attributed to Macedonia and the portrait identified as Brutus (Friedlander) or Caesar (Grant). David Sear notes the type has never been found in Macedonia. Finds point to Syria or Anatolia. It is possible that the type was issued, with his own portrait, by Sosius, a general under Marc Antony who was quaestor in 39 B.C. Much more likely, however, the portrait is of Augustus.
RP111713. Bronze AE 27, RPC I 5409; Sear CRI 957 (Syria); AMNG II 29 (Pella), F, dark green patina, weight 18.142 g, maximum diameter 27.4 mm, die axis 0o, uncertain Anatolian or Syrian mint, c. 39 B.C.(?); obverse bare head right; reverse hasta (spear), sella quaestoria (quaestor's seat of office), and fiscus (imperial treasury), Q (quaestor) below; previously a rare type but recent finds have made it easier to acquire; $250.00 (230.00)


Domitian, 13 September 81 - 18 September 96 A.D., Caesarea Maritima, Samaria, Judaea

|Roman| |Judea| |&| |Palestina|, |Domitian,| |13| |September| |81| |-| |18| |September| |96| |A.D.,| |Caesarea| |Maritima,| |Samaria,| |Judaea||AE| |21|
Caesarea, about 30 miles north of Joppa and about 70 miles northwest of Jerusalem, was founded by Herod the Great and named for Caesar Augustus. It was the seat of the Roman procurators and the Roman military headquarters in Judaea. The Pilate Stone, discovered here in 1961, is only archaeological find that names Pontius Pilate, by whose order Jesus was crucified. After the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D., Caesarea was the provincial capital of the Judaea Province. Well into Byzantine times, Caesarea remained the capital. In the 630s, Arab Muslim armies took the region, but kept Caesarea as its administrative center until early 8th century. Caesarea's ruins are a national park on the Mediterranean coast of Israel, about halfway between Tel Aviv and Haifa.
RP111787. Bronze AE 21, RPC Online II 2231 (11 spec.); Kadman Caesarea 20; Rosenberger 18; Sofaer 19; BMC Palestine p. 16, 36, VF, brown-green surfaces, light earthen deposits, weight 9.036 g, maximum diameter 20.8 mm, die axis 0o, Caesarea Maritima (Keisaria, Israel) mint, obverse IMP DOMITIANVS CAESAR DIVI F AVG, laureate head right; reverse COL I FLA - AVG CAES (clockwise from upper right), Tyche standing slightly left, head left, wearing turreted crown, right foot on prow, human bust in right hand, cross-headed standard in left hand; ex Triton XXV (11 Jan 2022), lot 6497; ex Dr. Jay M. Galst Collection; ex IML (July 2006); this is the first specimen of this type handled by FORVM; $200.00 (184.00)


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

|Judaea| |&| |Palestine|, |Nero,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.,| |Ake| |Ptolemais,| |Galilee||AE| |24|
Ptolemais was a maritime city of Galilee (Acts 21:7). It was originally Accho, but was renamed Ptolemais under the rule of Ptolemy Soter. The ceremonial founding of a new Roman colony included plowing a furrow, the pomerium, a sacred boundary, around the site of the new city.
RP111779. Bronze AE 24, RPC I 4750 (20 spec.); SNG Cop 181; Kadman, Akko 92; Rosenberger 9; Sofaer 131; Seyrig 31, Rouvier 996; Baramki AUB 12, F, porous, weight 12.529 g, maximum diameter 23.5 mm, die axis 0o, Galilee, Ake Ptolemais (Acre, Israel) mint, c. 66 - 68 A.D.; obverse IMP NER CL CAES AVG GER P M TR POT, laureate head right, star-in-crescent to right; reverse DIVOS CLAVD STAB GER FELIX P, Nero plowing right with oxen, marking the pomerium (sacred boundary marking the foundation of a new Roman colony), four vexilla inscribed III, VI, X, and XII on far side (in background), C-OL - CL-A across field divided by vexilla shafts; ex CNG e-auction 510 (23 Feb 2022), lot 497; ex Dr. Jay M. Galst Collection; ex Coin Galleries mail bid sale (14 Apr 1999), lot 283; scarce; $190.00 (174.80)


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

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Nero,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.,| |Roman| |Provincial| |Egypt||tetradrachm|
Ptolemy Soter wanted to integrate the Hellenistic and Egyptian religions by finding a deity that could win the reverence of both groups. The Greeks would not accept an animal-headed figure, so a Greek-style anthromorphic statue was chosen as the idol, and proclaimed as the equivalent of the highly popular Apis. It was named Aser-hapi (i.e. Osiris-Apis), which became Serapis, and was said to be Osiris in full, rather than just his Ka (life force). Ptolemy's efforts were successful - in time Serapis was held by the Egyptians in the highest reverence above all other deities, and he was adored in Athens and other Greek cities.
RX111457. Billon tetradrachm, RPC Online I 5274; Dattari 251; Milne 222; BMC Alexandria p. 19, 156; Geissen 160; Kampmann 14.77; Emmett 133.10, VF, well centered on a tight flan, porous, weight 12.133 g, maximum diameter 23.6 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 63 - 28 Aug 64 A.D.; obverse NEPΩ KΛAY KAIΣ ΣEB ΓEP, radiate head right; reverse AYTOKPA, draped bust of Serapis right, wearing taenia and polos ornamented with lotus, LI (year 10) lower right; from the CEB Collection; $180.00 (165.60)




  







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