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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Roman Coins| ▸ |The Adoptive Emperors| ▸ |Antoninus Pius||View Options:  |  |  |   

Antoninus Pius, August 138 - 7 March 161 A.D.

Titus Aurelius Fulvius Boionius Arrius Antoninus was born around 86 A.D. to a distinguished family. After a typical senatorial career, he made a name for himself as proconsul of Asia. He was adopted as Emperor Hadrian's heir in February 138 A.D. and succeeded soon after. His reign was long and peaceful, a Golden Age of tranquility and prosperity. He died in 161 A.D., leaving Marcus Aurelius as his successor.

Antoninus Pius, August 138 - 7 March 161 A.D., Nicomedia, Bithynia

|Nikomedia|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.,| |Nicomedia,| |Bithynia||AE| |22|NEW
Nicomedia was the Roman metropolis of Bithynia. Diocletian made it the capital of the Eastern Roman Empire in 286 when he introduced the Tetrarchy system. Nicomedia remained the eastern (and most senior) capital of the Empire until co-emperor Licinius was defeated by Constantine the Great at the Battle of Chrysopolis in 324. Constantine resided mainly in Nicomedia as his interim capital for the next six years, until in 330 when he declared nearby Byzantium (renamed Constantinople) the new capital. Constantine died in his royal villa near Nicomedia in 337. Due to its position at the convergence of the Asiatic roads leading to the new capital, Nicomedia retained its importance even after the foundation of Constantinople.
RP112810. Bronze AE 22, RPC Online IV T5599 (3 spec.) var. (laur. head); Rec Gen II.3 74; BMC Pontus p. 182, 17 var. (same); SNG Cop -; SNGvA -, F, dark patina, high points and parts of legends weak, light deposits, rev. slightly off center, weight 6.872 g, maximum diameter 22.1 mm, die axis 0o, Nikomedia (Izmit, Turkey) mint, Aug 138 - 7 Mar 161 A.D.; obverse AVT KAICAP ANTΩNINOC, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind; reverse NIKOMHΔEIAC, galley with sail left, NEOKOPOY, in exergue; ex Leu Numismatik auction 25 (11-14 Mar 2023), lot 4116 (part of); ex European collection (formed before 2005); the only specimen known to FORVM with this bust variant; extremely rare; $300.00 SALE PRICE $270.00


Antoninus Pius, August 138 - 7 March 161 A.D., Roman Egypt

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.,| |Roman| |Egypt||drachm|
 
RX111023. Bronze drachm, RPC Online 13749/36 (this coin); Dattari-Savio 8855; Geissen 1672; SNG Milan 1299; BMC Alexandria p. 143, 1201; Emmett 1449, aVF, well centered, some corrosion/pitting, edge splits, obv. edge beveled, weight 27.079 g, maximum diameter 34.4 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 151 - 152 A.D.; obverse AVT K T AIΛ AΔP ANTWNINOC CEB EVC, laureate bust right, with aegis on far shoulder; reverse Peristyle altar of Agathodaemon, with four columns and garlanded entablature, female figure sacrificing within, burning pyre and acroteria in form of aphlasta above; L in exergue, I-E (year 15) across fields; ex Naville Numismatics 40 (27 May 2018), lot 298; ex Roma Numismatics e-auction 41 (2 Dec 2017), lot 491; $155.00 SALE PRICE $140.00


Antoninus Pius, August 138 - 7 March 161 A.D., Nicaea, Bithynia

|Bithynia|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.,| |Nicaea,| |Bithynia||hemiassarion|
According to myth, Hermes and Dionysos were sons of Zeus, but Hermes' mother was the princess Semele and Dionysos' mother was the minor goddess Maia. To protect the infant Dionysos from his wife Hera, Zeus entrusted him to Hermes, who together with a band of nymphs, hid the child near Mt. Nysa in Anatolia.
RP111796. Bronze hemiassarion, RPC Online IV 5875 (3 spec.); Rec Gen 79; SNG Cop 480 corr. (obv. leg., M. Aurelius), aVF, dark and earthen patina, weight 4.044 g, maximum diameter 19.2 mm, die axis 180o, Nicaea (Iznik, Turkey) mint, obverse AVT KAICAP ANTΩNINOC, laureate head right; reverse NIKAIEΩN, Infant Dionysos seated right in cradle, extending both arms, thyrsus in cradle behind (not visible); Coin Archives records only one specimen of the type at auction in the last two decades; very rare; $150.00 SALE PRICE $135.00


|Antoninus| |Pius|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
The earliest atlas (Ptolemy's Geography) was made around 150 A.D.
RS111527. Silver denarius, RIC III 196, RSC II 220, BMCRE IV 717, SRCV II 4069, Hunter II -, VF, broad flan, well centered obv., rev. slightly off center, radiating flow lines, mild die wear, edge splits/cracks, weight 3.541 g, maximum diameter 19.0 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, Dec 150 - Dec 151 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS AVG PIVS P P TR P XIIII, laureate head right; reverse COS IIII, Genius standing half left, head left, nude, patera in right hand, grain ears downward in left hand; ex Numismatik Naumann auction 124 (8 Jan 2023), lot 907 (part of); $140.00 SALE PRICE $126.00


|Antoninus| |Pius|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
Annona was the goddess of harvest and her main attribute is grain. This reverse suggests the arrival of grain by sea from the provinces (especially from Africa) and its distribution to the people.
RS111914. Silver denarius, RIC III 260, RSC II 1016, BMCRE IV 883, SRCV II 4128, Hunter II 106, VF, toned, flow lines, slightly off center, small edge cracks, rev. die wear, weight 3.446 g, maximum diameter 17.6 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 156 - 157 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS AVG PIVS IMP II, laureate head right; reverse TR POT XX COS IIII, Annona standing right, left foot on prow, rudder in right hand, modius overflowing with grain balanced on left knee with left hand; from the Michael Arslan Collection; $100.00 SALE PRICE $90.00


Antoninus Pius, August 138 - 7 March 161 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt

|Roman| |Egypt|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.,| |Roman| |Provincial| |Egypt||tetradrachm|NEW
Dikaiosyne is the Greek personification of justice and fair dealing. One of the most common reverse types of Alexandria, she always holds scales and cornucopia.
RX112105. Billon tetradrachm, Geissen 1330; Dattari 2199; Kampmann 35.66; SNG Cop 435; Curtis 595; Emmett 1377.4; BMC Alexandria p. 124, 1060 var. (AΔPA, laur. dr. bust), F, nice portrait, mild porosity, tight flan, tiny edge split, uneven strike with weak areas, weight 10.817 g, maximum diameter 23.2 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 140 - 28 Aug 141 A.D.; obverse AVT - K T AIΛ AΔP - ANTWNINOC AY, laureate head right, bare right shoulder seen from behind; reverse Dikaiosyne (Aequitas) seated left, scales in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, date LΔ (year 4) upper left; $100.00 SALE PRICE $90.00


|Antoninus| |Pius|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.||denarius|
Annona was the goddess of harvest and her main attribute is grain. This reverse suggests the arrival of grain by sea from the provinces (especially from Egypt) and its distribution to the people.
RS112534. Silver denarius, RIC III 239, RSC II 292, Hunter II 97, BMCRE IV 832, Strack 279, cf. SRCV II 4068 (TR P XVII), aVF/F, flow lines, toning, scratches, flan a bit ragged with edge cracks, weight 3.178 g, maximum diameter 18.8 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 154 - 155 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS AVG PIVS P P TR P XVIII, laureate head right; reverse COS IIII, Annona standing half left, stalks of grain in right hand, left hand rests on modius overflowing with grain set on prow; ex Numismatik Naumann auction 129 (4 Jun 2023), lot 997 (part of); $100.00 SALE PRICE $90.00


|Antoninus| |Pius|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.||denarius|NEW
The reverse legend abbreviates Vota Suscepta Decennalia Tertia, Consul Quartum, indicating Antoninus Pius had taken vows (made offerings and prayers) for the 30th anniversary of his rule and that he is consul for the 4th time. Antoninus Pius did not, however, actually rule for 30 years. The vows were made on the 20th anniversary of his rule, in the hope for ten more successful years.
RS111584. Silver denarius, RIC III 293a, RSC II 1117, BMCRE IV 582, Hunter II 122 var. (rev. leg. abbreviations), SRCV II 4140 var. (no bull), F/aF, light toning, flow lines, obv. off center, scratches, edge splits/cracks, weight 2.890 g, maximum diameter 17.3 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, Dec 158 - Dec 159 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS AVG PIVS P P TR P XXII, laureate head right; reverse VOTA SVSCEP DECENN III, Antoninus standing half left, togate, sacrificing over tripod left, small sacrificial bull on far side of altar, COS IIII in exergue; ex Numismatik Naumann auction 124 (8 Jan 2023), lot 986 (part of); $80.00 SALE PRICE $72.00


Antoninus Pius, August 138 - 7 March 161 A.D., 138 - 161 A.D., Zeugma, Commagene, Syria

|Roman| |Syria|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.,| |138| |-| |161| |A.D.,| |Zeugma,| |Commagene,| |Syria||AE| |22|
Zeugma was founded by Seleucus I Nicator who almost certainly named the city Seleucia after himself. In 64 B.C. the city was conquered by Rome and renamed Zeugma, meaning "bridge of boats." On the Silk Road connecting Antioch to China, Zeugma had a pontoon bridge across the Euphrates, which was the long time border with the Persian Empire. The Legio IV Scythica was camped in Zeugma. The legion and the trade station brought great wealth to Zeugma until, in 256, Zeugma was fully destroyed by the Sassanid king, Shapur I. An earthquake then buried the city beneath rubble. The city never regained its earlier prosperity and, after Arab raids in the 5th and 6th centuries, it was abandoned again.
RP111648. Bronze AE 22, cf. SNG Hunter II 2633; RPC Online IV.3 T10693; BMC Galatia p. 124, 1, VF, dark patina, tight flan, some legend unstruck/off flan, weight 9.144 g, maximum diameter 21.5 mm, die axis 0o, Zeugma (Belkis, Turkey) mint, obverse AYTO KANTI TI ANT AΔPIA ANTWNINOC CEB EYC (or similar, obscure), laureate head of Antoninus Pius right; reverse ZEVΓMATΕWN (or similar), temple with four columns; on far side of a wall of two stories and a colonnaded peribolos containing grove, A in right field, all in laurel wreath; $80.00 SALE PRICE $72.00


Antoninus Pius, August 138 - 7 March 161 A.D., Eumeneia, Phrygia

|Eumeneia|, |Antoninus| |Pius,| |August| |138| |-| |7| |March| |161| |A.D.,| |Eumeneia,| |Phrygia||AE| |26|
Eumenea, Phrygia was founded by Attalus II Philadelphus (159 - 138 B.C.) at the source of the Cludrus, near the Glaucus, and named after his brother Eumenes. Numerous inscriptions and many coins remain to show that Eumenia was an important and prosperous city under Roman rule. As early as the third century its population was in great part Christian, and it seems to have suffered much during the persecution of Diocletian. The remains of Eumenia are located in Denizli Province, Turkey on the shore of Lake Isikli near Civril.
RP110014. Bronze AE 26, RPC Online IV-2 T1989; BMC Phrygia p. 219, 56; SNGvA 3594; SNG Leypold II 1540; Weber 7096; SNG Tbingen 4014; SNG Cop -, F, rough, black patina, weight 10.205 g, maximum diameter 25.7 mm, die axis 0o, Eumeneia (near Civril, Turkey) mint, obverse AVTO KAICA ANTΩNEINOC, laureate and cuirassed bust right, aegis on left shoulder, seen from the front; reverse EVMENEΩN AXAIΩN, hump-backed bull walking left, Nike walking left on far side of bull, wearing chiton, grasping bull's left horn and guiding bull with left hand, brandishing knife to sacrifice bull in right hand; $60.00 SALE PRICE $54.00




  



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OBVERSE| LEGENDS|

ANTONINVSAVGPIVS
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSCOS
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPP
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPCOSIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPCOSIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPIMPII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRP
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXI
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXV
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVI
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXX
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXI
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPCOSII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPCOSIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPCOSIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXI
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXV
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVI
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXVIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXIX
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXX
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXI
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXIII
ANTONINVSAVGPIVSPPTRPXXIIII
ANTONINVSAVGPPTRIXX
ANTONINVSFXII
ANTONINVSFXVI
ANTONINVSFXVII
ANTONINVSFXXII
IMPANTONINVSAVGCOS
IMPANTONINVSAVGVSTVS
IMPCAESAELANTONINVSAVG
IMPCAESAELIVSANTONINVSAVG
IMPCAESTAELANTONINVSAVGPIVSPP
IMPCAESTAELHADRANTONINVSAVGPIVSPP
IMPCAESTAELHADRIANTONINVSAVGPIVS
IMPCAESTAELHADRIANTONINVSAVGPIVSPP
IMPTAELCAESANTONINVS
IMPTAELCAESANTONINVSAVG
IMPTAELCAESARHADRANTONINVS
IMPTAELCAESHADRANTONINVS
IMPTAELCAESHADRIANTONINVS
IMPTAELIVSCAESARANTONINVS


REFERENCES|

Banti, A. & L. Simonetti. Corpus Nummorum Romanorum. (Florence, 1972-1979).
Calic, E. The Roman Avrei, Vol. I: From the Republic to Pertinax, 196 BC - 193 AD. (Barcelona, 2003).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappes sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 2: Nerva to Antoninus Pius. (Paris, 1883).
Mattingly, H. & E. Sydenham. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. II: Vespasian to Hadrian. (London, 1926). (Caesar under Hadrian)
Mattingly, H. & E. Sydenham. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. III: Antoninus Pius to Commodus. (London, 1930).
Mattingly, H. & R. Carson. Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum, Vol. 4: Antoninus Pius to Commodus. (London, 1940).
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet. II. Trajan to Commodus (London, 1971).
Seaby, H. & R. Loosley. Roman Silver Coins, Vol. II: Tiberius to Commodus. (London, 1979).
Sear, D. Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. II: The Accession of Nerva to the Overthrow of the Severan Dynasty AD 96 - AD 235. (London, 2002).
Strack, P. Untersuchungen zur rmischen Reichsprgung des zweiten Jahrhunderts, Teil III: Die Reichsprgung zur Zeit Antoninus Pius. (Stuttgart, 1937).
Toynbee, J. Roman medallions. ANSNS 5. (New York, 1944).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).

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