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

Roman Coins of the 12 Caesars
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.
SH99219. Silver denarius, RIC I 8 (R2), RSC II 17, BMCRE I 18, BnF III 10, Hunter I C 3807, SRCV I 2162, F/aF, excellent portrait for the grade, toned, scratches, bumps, parts of obv. legend weakly struck, weight 2.969 g, maximum diameter 18.8 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, raising wreath in right hand, long scepter in left hand; rare; $800.00 SALE PRICE $720.00


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

|Nero|, |Nero,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.,| |Ancient| |Counterfeit||denarius|
To celebrate his escape from the Pisonian conspiracy and assassination attempt in 65 A.D., Nero constructed a temple to Salus, the Roman goddess of health and safety, and honored her on the reverse of his coins.
RS99192. Fouree silver plated denarius, cf. RIC I 67 (for obv.) and 72 (for rev.) (official, solid silver, Rome mint, 67-68 A.D.), gVF, toned, core visible in edge crack, silver foil edge visible on rev., weight 3.101 g, maximum diameter 18.8 mm, die axis 90o, unofficial, counterfeiter's mint, 67 - 68 A.D.; obverse NERO CAESAR AVGVSTVS, laureate head right; reverse Salus seated left on high-back throne, patera in right hand, SA-LVS across field; ex CNG e-auction 500 (22 Sep 2021), 735 (part of); ex Mercury Group Collection; ex CNG mail bid sale 76 (12 Sep 2007), lot 1410; ex C. G. Collection; ex CNG mail bid sale 45 (18 Mar 1998), lot 1907; $650.00 SALE PRICE $585.00


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

|Nero|, |Nero,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
To celebrate his escape from the Pisonian conspiracy and assassination attempt in 65 A.D., Nero constructed a temple to Salus, the Roman goddess of health and safety, and honored her on the reverse of his coins.
SH99594. Silver denarius, RIC I 60 (R), RSC II 314, BMCRE I 90, BnF II 228, Hunter I 30, SRCV I -, gVF, marks, scratches, uneven tone, de-lamination, weight 3.086 g, maximum diameter 18.9 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 66 - 67 A.D.; obverse NERO CAESAR AVGVSTVS, laureate head right; reverse Salus enthroned left, patera in extended right hand, left elbow on throne, SALVS (health) in exergue; ex Roma Numismatics e-sale 95 (13 Apr 2022), lot 904; ex Z.P. Collection (Austria); $550.00 (522.50)


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) ; $550.00 SALE PRICE $495.00


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; $500.00 SALE PRICE $450.00


Caligula, 16 March 37 - 24 January 41 A.D., Unofficial Counterfeit, Hybrid With Augustus Reverse

|Caligula|, |Caligula,| |16| |March| |37| |-| |24| |January| |41| |A.D.,| |Unofficial| |Counterfeit,| |Hybrid| |With| |Augustus| |Reverse||denarius|
Tiberius left his estate and the titles of the principate to Caligula and to Tiberius' own grandson, Gemellus, who were to serve as joint heirs. Although Tiberius was 78 and on his death bed, some ancient historians still conjecture that he was murdered. Tacitus writes that the Praetorian Prefect, Macro, smothered Tiberius with a pillow to hasten Caligula's accession, much to the joy of the Roman people. Suetonius writes that Caligula may have carried out the murder himself, though this is not recorded by any other ancient historian. Seneca the elder and Philo, as well as Josephus, record that Tiberius died a natural death. Caligula had Tiberius' will nullified with regards to Gemellus on grounds of insanity, but otherwise he carried out Tiberius' wishes.
RS99189. Fouree silver plated denarius, cf. RIC I Caligula 2 (for obv., official, silver, Lugdunum, 37 A.D.), RIC I Augustus 207 (for rev., official, silver, Lugdunum, 2 B.C. - 4 A.D.), aVF, toned, bumps and marks, scattered plating breaks, crude, weight 3.535 g, maximum diameter 19.8 mm, die axis 315o, unofficial counterfeiter's mint, c. 37 - 41 A.D.; obverse C CAESAR AVG GERM P M TR POT COS, bare head of Caligula right; reverse AVGVSTI F COS DESIG PRINC IVVENT C L CAESARES, Caius and Lucius Caesars standing facing, two shields and two spears between them; above, on left, simpulum right, and on right, lituus left.; an interesting hybrid forgery of the types of Caligula and Augustus; ex CNG e-auction 500 (22 Sep 2021), 735 (part of); ex Mercury Group Collection; $500.00 SALE PRICE $450.00


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 LIϖ in wreath; very rare; $450.00 SALE PRICE $405.00


Augustus, 16 January 27 B.C. - 19 August 14 A.D.

|Augustus|, |Augustus,| |16| |January| |27| |B.C.| |-| |19| |August| |14| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
Augustus' sun sign was Libra. We don't know why he selected the Capricorn as his emblem. Perhaps Capricorn was either his rising sign or his Moon sign. Popular astrology, of the newspaper kind, is sun sign astrology. The ancients tended to attach more importance to the Moon sign and rising signs. Perhaps Augustus selected the Capricorn because it is associated with stern moral authority.
RS99593. Silver denarius, RIC I 174, RSC I 147, BnF I 1403, BMCRE I 465, Giard Lyon 29, SRCV I -, VF, excellent portrait, iridescence around devices, scratches, weight 3.453 g, maximum diameter 17.5 mm, die axis 105o, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, 12 B.C.; obverse AVGVSTVS DIVI F, bare head right; reverse capricorn right, holding globe, IMP XI below; ex Roma Numismatics e-sale 95 (13 Apr 2022), lot 879; ex Z.P. Collection (Austria); scarce; $380.00 (361.00)


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); $350.00 SALE PRICE $315.00


Judaea, Valerius Gratus, Roman Prefect Under Tiberius, 15 - 26 A.D., Unofficial Imitative or Counterfeit

|Valerius| |Gratus|, |Judaea,| |Valerius| |Gratus,| |Roman| |Prefect| |Under| |Tiberius,| |15| |-| |26| |A.D.,| |Unofficial| |Imitative| |or| |Counterfeit||prutah|
This specimen is so crude it seems unlikely that even a complete illiterate wouldn't notice it was a bit strange.
JD98801. Bronze prutah, cf. Hendin 6364a, Meshorer TJC 321a; Sofaer 18; SNG ANS 344; BMC Palestine p. 253, 16; RPC I 4961 (none this crude and blundered), VF, extremely crude, barbaric, irregular, weight 1.719 g, maximum diameter 15.2 mm, die axis 0o, unofficial mint, c. 16 - 20 A.D.; obverse IOY/ΛIA (blundered illegible Greek: Julia) in two lines within wreath, closed with an annulet at top; reverse three formal lilies in bloom springing from a single base, L - Γ (year 3 of Tiberius, Γ blundered) divided across field; this is the most barbaric crude specimen of the type known to FORVM; very rare; $300.00 SALE PRICE $270.00




  







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