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

Agrippina Junior, Augusta 50 - March 59 A.D.

Agrippina Jr., daughter of Agrippina Sr. and Germanicus, sister of Caligula, and mother of Nero, was born in 16 A.D. Despite an incestuous relationship, she was exiled by her brother Caligula. She seduced her uncle Claudius and married him soon after. After ensured her son Nero would become emperor, she murdered Claudius by feeding him poisoned mushrooms. A soothsayer once prophesied that if Nero became emperor, he would kill his mother, Agrippina replied "Let him kill me, only let him rule!" In March of 59 A.D., Nero arranged for her to board a vessel that was rigged to collapse and capsize. She survived the wreck, swam to shore, and made it to one of her villas, but was executed on Nero's orders.


Caligula, 16 March 37 - 24 January 41 A.D.

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The first Rome mint portrait sestertius type, and a highly sought after reverse type.
SH38172. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I 33; BMCRE p. 152, 36; BnF II 47; Cohen I 4; SRCV I 1800, NGC VF, Strike 5, Surface 2, weight 26.340 g, maximum diameter 34.5 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Rome mint, 37 - 38 A.D.; obverse C CAESAR AVG GERMANICVS PON M TR POT, laureate head left; reverse AGRIPPINA DRVSILLA IVLIA, the three sisters of Caligula standing, in the guises of Securitas, Concordia, and Fortuna, S C (senatus consulto) in exergue; NGC certified, excellent centering and strike, attractive portrait, patina worn on high spots; rare; SOLD


Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D., Ephesos, Ionia

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This issue celebrated their marriage and Agrippina Junior's elevation to Augusta. Julia Agrippina was a great-granddaughter of Augustus, great-niece and adoptive granddaughter of Tiberius, sister of Caligula, niece and fourth wife of Claudius, and mother of the Nero. She is described by the ancient sources as ruthless, ambitious, violent and domineering, but also beautiful and reputable. According to Pliny the Elder, she had a double right upper canine, a sign of good fortune. Many ancient historians accused Agrippina of poisoning Claudius. A soothsayer prophesied if Nero became emperor, he would kill his mother, Agrippina replied "Let him kill me, only let him rule!" Nero had her executed in 59 A.D.
SH79841. Silver cistophorus, RPC I 2223, RIC I 117 (R), BMCRE I 234, BnF II 294, RSC II 2, SRCV I 1887, VF, excellent portraits, toned, nice surfaces, highest points flatly struck, reverse slightly off-center, weight 11.054 g, maximum diameter 25.1 mm, die axis 180o, Ephesus mint, 50 - 51 A.D.; obverse TI CLAVD CAESAR AVG P M TR P X IMP XIIX (counterclockwise), laureate head of Claudius right; reverse AGRIPPINA AVGVSTA CAESARIS AVG (counterclockwise), draped bust of Agrippina Jr. right, hair in queue at back, hair in three rows of curls above ear and long curly strand below ear; rare; SOLD


Claudius and Agrippina Junior, 50 - 54 A.D.

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Julia Agrippina was a great-granddaughter of Augustus, great-niece and adoptive granddaughter of Tiberius, sister of Caligula, niece and fourth wife of Claudius, and mother of the Nero. She is described by the ancient sources as ruthless, ambitious, violent and domineering, but also beautiful and reputable. According to Pliny the Elder, she had a double right upper canine, a sign of good fortune. Many ancient historians accused Agrippina of poisoning Claudius. A soothsayer prophesied if Nero became emperor, he would kill his mother, Agrippina replied "Let him kill me, only let him rule!" Nero had her executed in 59 A.D.
RS72978. Silver denarius, RIC I 81 (R), BMCRE I 75, RSC II Agrippina II and Claudius 4, BnF II 82, Hunter I 36, SRCV I 1886, F, nice portraits, toned, well centered on crowded flan, weight 3.329 g, maximum diameter 18.1 mm, die axis 135o, Rome mint, c. 50 - 54 A.D.; obverse TI CLAVD CAESAR AVG GERM P M TRIB POT P P, laureate head of Claudius right; reverse AGRIPPINAE AVGVSTAE, draped bust of Agrippina II right, she wears a wreath of grain from which one long tie hangs down at the back, her hair is fastened in a long plait looped up behind her neck, two locks fall loose down her neck; from the Jyrki Muona Collection; rare; SOLD


Agrippina Junior, Augusta 50 - March 59 A.D., Hierocaesaraea, Lydia

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Hierocaesarea (from the Greek for "sacred" and the Latin for "Caesar's") was located seven or eight miles southeast of Thyatira, on the left bank of the Koum-Chai, a tributary of the Hermus (between the modern Turkish villages of Beyova and Sasova). The town is mentioned by Ptolemy (VI, ii, 16). Judging from its coins, it worshiped the goddess Artemis Persica.
RP76969. Bronze AE 19, RPC I 2387; BMC Lydia p. 106, 22; SNG Cop -; SNGvA -, SNG München -, SNG Tüb -, gVF, attractive portrait, nice green patina, weight 5.928 g, maximum diameter 18.8 mm, die axis 0o, Hierocaesaraea mint, c. 50 - March 59 A.D.; obverse AΓPIΠΠINA ΣEBAΣTH, draped bust right, hair in long plait down back of neck and looped at end, long loosely curled lock down side of neck; reverse AΓPIΠΠINA ΘEAN CEBACTHN, Artemis Persica standing facing, wearing long chiton, with right hand drawing arrow from quiver on right shoulder, left hand on hip, stag at her side on left; ex Pecunem, Gitbud & Naumann auction 34 (2 Aug 2015), lot 664; very rare; SOLD


Claudius and Agrippina Junior, 50 - 13 October 54 A.D., Smyrna, Ionia

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Agrippina Jr. was daughter of Agrippina Sr. and Germanicus, sister of Caligula, and mother of Nero. She seduced and married her uncle Claudius, murdering him after she secured the thrown for Nero. A soothsayer prophesied if Nero became emperor, he would kill his mother, Agrippina replied "Let him kill me, only let him rule!" Nero executed her in 59 A.D.
RP70082. Bronze AE 21, Klose XXX; RPC I 2475; SNG Cop 1348; BMC Ionia p. 270, 281; Lindgren I A561A, VF, nice near black dark patina, small areas of light corrosion and encrustation, strike weak upper reverse, weight 5.197 g, maximum diameter 21.0 mm, die axis 0o, Smyrna (Izmir, Turkey) mint, 51 - 13 Oct 54 A.D.; obverse jugate laureate head of Claudius and draped bust of Agrippina Junior right, ΣMYP below; reverse EΠI ΦIΛIΣTOY EIKA∆IOΣ (stephanephoros Philistos and strategos Eikadios), Cybele seated left, patera in right, left arm resting on tympanum on seat beside her, small lion right under seat on exergue line; rare; SOLD


Nero and Agrippina Junior, 54 - 59 A.D., Orthosia, Caria

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The reverse alludes to the imperial family. Agrippina was the niece of Claudius, just as Persephone was the niece of Hades.
RY86714. Leaded bronze AE 18, RPC I 2825 (3 specimens, plate coin has NEPWN behind the busts); Imhoof-Blumer MG p. 313, 75, aVF, struck with high relief dies in the style of the "Laodicea" engraver, green patina, tight flan, bumps and marks, light corrosion/porosity, weight 5.214 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, die axis 0o, Orthosia (Donduran, Aydin, Turkey) mint, 54 - 59 A.D.; obverse ΣEBAΣT NEPΩN, bare headed, draped jugate busts of Nero Augustus and Agrippina Junior right; reverse OPΘOΣIWN, Hades carrying off Persephone in a quadriga right; none on Coin Archives; extremely rare; SOLD


Nero and Agrippina Junior, 13 October 54 - 9 June 68 A.D., Caesarea Maritima, Judaea

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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.
RP79842. Bronze AE 24, RPC I 4860, Meshorer TJC 359, Hendin 1271, Rosenberger III 1 - 2 (Sebaste), Sofaer -, Kadman Caesarea -, aF, rough, weight 10.978 g, maximum diameter 24.2 mm, die axis 0o, Caesarea Maritima mint, c. 55 A.D.; obverse NEPWNOC KΛAY∆IOY ΓEPMANIKOY KAICAPOC CE, laureate and draped bust of Nero right; reverse AΓPIΠΠEINHC CEBACTHC, Agrippina Junior seated left on low seat with ornamented legs, extending branch in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, crescent above; SOLD


Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D., with Agrippina Junior

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The image on the reverse resembles sculptures of Artemis, the Lady of Ephesus, including one at the Ephesus Archaeological Museum and another at the Vatican. The Ionians worshiped Artemis as a mother goddess, akin to the Phrygian Cybele. Her cult image was adorned with multiple rounded breast like protuberances on her chest. They have been variously interpreted as accessory breasts, eggs, grapes, acorns, or even bull testes. Excavation at the site of the Artemision in 1987/8 found a multitude of tear-shaped amber beads that once adorned the ancient wooden xoanon.Artemis
RP27251. Bronze AE 18, RPC I 2621 (9 spec.); Weber 5871; BMC Ionia p. 73, 206; SNG Cop 369 corr. (Tiberius and Livia), aVF/F, nice green patina, light marks, tiny edge splits, weight 5.872 g, maximum diameter 18.1 mm, die axis 180o, Ephesos mint, c. 49 - 50 A.D.; obverse jugate head of Claudius and draped bust of Agrippina right; reverse facing cultus-statue of Ephesian Artemis, with arm supports, EΦE-CIA high across field divided by head; rare; SOLD


Caligula, 16 March 37 - 24 January 41 A.D., Philadelphia, Lydia

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Vipsania Agrippina, also known as Agrippina Major, Agrippina Senior, or Agrippina I, was the wife of Germanicus and Caligula's mother. She was the granddaughter of Augustus, the daughter of his daughter Julia. She was the sister-in-law, stepdaughter, and daughter-in-law of Tiberius. She was the maternal second cousin and sister-in-law of Claudius and the maternal grandmother of Nero.
RP84954. Bronze AE 19, RPC I 3032; BMC Lydia p. 195, 55; SNG Cop 372, VF, nice dark patina, scratches, reverse slightly off center, weight 4.126 g, maximum diameter 18.5 mm, die axis 180o, Philadelphia (Alasehir, Turkey) mint, magistrate Artemon Hermogenous; obverse ΓAIOC KAICAP ΓEPMANIKOC NEOKAICAPEΩN, laureate head right; reverse AΓPIΠΠINA APRTEMΩN EPMOΓENOYC, Agrippina (as Demeter?) seated right, long scepter vertical behind in right hand, cornucopia in left hand; ex Numismatik Naumann auction 43, lot 708; rare; SOLD


Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D., with Agrippina Junior

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Ephesos, on the west coast of Anatolia, was one of the twelve cities of the Ionian League. It was famous for its Temple of Artemis, completed around 550 B.C., one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. The cult image of the Ephesian goddess has a mummy-like body with the feet placed close together, is many-breasted, and from each of her hands hangs a long fillet with tassels at the ends. At her side stands a stag, raising its head to the image of the goddess. The usual symbols of this nature-goddess are the torch, stag, and the bee. Coins of Ephesos most frequently depict a bee on the obverse. The high-priest of the temple of Artemis was called King Bee, while the virgin priestesses were called honey-bees (Melissae). Ephesus was one of the seven churches of Asia cited in the Book of Revelation and the Gospel of John may have been written there.
RP82727. Bronze assarion, Karwiese MvE 5.2 Claudius & Agrippina II O20/R68; RPC I 2622, BMC Ionia p. 73, 203; SNG Cop 371; SNGvA 1877; SNG München 116, VF, dark green patina, some corrosion, weight 4.728 g, maximum diameter 19.6 mm, die axis 15o, Ephesos mint, c. 49 - 50 A.D.; obverse jugate heads right of Claudius, laureate, and Agrippina, draped; reverse stag standing right, EΦE/ΣIΩN in two lines above; SOLD




  




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OBVERSE| LEGENDS|

AGRIPPAVGDIVICLAVDNERONISCAESMATER
AGRIPPINAAVGGERMANICIFCAESARISAVG
AGRIPPINAAVGVSTACAESARISAVG
AGRIPPINAEAVGVSTAE
NEROCLAVDDIVICLAVDFCAESARAVGGERMANI
NEROCLAVDDIVIFCAESAVGGERMIMPTRPCOS
TICLAVDCAESAVGAGRIPPAVGVSTA
TICLAVDCAESARAVGGERMPMTRIBPOTPP


REFERENCES|

American Numismatic Society (ANS) Collections Database Online - http://numismatics.org/search/search
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Mac Dowall, D.W. The Western Coinages of Nero. ANSNNM 161. (New York, 1979).
Mattingly, H. and R.A.G. Carson. Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum, Vol 1: Augustus to Vitellius. (London, 1923).
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, University of Glasgow, Vol. I. Augustus to Nerva. (Oxford, 1962).
Seaby, H.A. & R. Loosley. Roman Silver Coins, Vol. II: Tiberius to Commodus. (London, 1979).
Sear, David R. Roman Coins and Their Values, The Millennium Edition, Volume One, The Republic and the Twelve Caesars 280 BC - AD 86. (London, 2000).
Sutherland, C.H.V. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. I, From 39 BC to AD 69. (London, 1984).
Toynbee, J.M.C. Roman medallions. ANSNS 5. (New York, 1944).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).
von Kaenel, H.-M. "Britannicus, Agrippina Minor und Nero in Thrakien" in SNR 63 (1984).

Catalog current as of Saturday, August 17, 2019.
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Roman Coins of Agrippina Jr.