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Ancient Roman Coins

Roman Bronze, Figure of Perseus Holding Head of Medusa, c. 1st - 3rd Century A.D.

|Metal| |Antiquities|, |Roman| |Bronze,| |Figure| |of| |Perseus| |Holding| |Head| |of| |Medusa,| |c.| |1st| |-| |3rd| |Century| |A.D.|
King Polydektes commanded Perseus to fetch the head of Medusa. With the help of the gods, Perseus obtained the helmet of Hades, which made him invisible, a reflective shield, and a magical harpa sword. Stealing the single eye of the Graeae, he compelled them to reveal the location of the Gorgones. Perseus approached Medusa as she slept and beheaded her with eyes averted to avoid her petrifying visage. Invisibility protected him from her vengeful sisters. On his journey back to Greece, Perseus came across the Ethiopian princess Andromeda chained to a rock as a sacrifice to a sea-monster. He slew the beast and brought her with him back to Greece as his bride. He returned to King Polydektes and turned him to stone, before traveling on to his grandfather's kingdom to claim the throne.

Bronzes of Herakles are abundant in the many museum collections reviewed by Forum, but Perseus is missing from most. We did not find any figures similar to this one in the many references checked.
AB23901. Roman Bronze, Figure of Perseus Holding Head of Medusa; BnF Bronzes -, Morgan Bronzes -, ROM Metalware -, BMC Bronzes -, Louvre Bronzes -, Choice, green patina, intact except for missing blade and mounting peg on left foot, reverse bronze standing figure of Perseus, 13cm (5") tall, nude but for the Phrygian helmet of Hades on his head, holding Medusa's head by the hair in his right hand, his harpa (blade missing) in his left hand, stand provided; ex Griffin Gallery of Ancient Art (Boca Raton FL); rare; $2800.00 SALE PRICE $2520.00


Roman Republic, Anonymous, c. 280 B.C.

|before| |211| |B.C.|, |Roman| |Republic,| |Anonymous,| |c.| |280| |B.C.||triens|
The triens (plural trientes) was an Ancient Roman bronze coin produced during the Roman Republic valued at one-third of an as.
SH110921. Aes grave (cast) triens, Crawford 14/3 var. (pellets below dolphin); Thurlow-Vecchi 3a var. (same); Haeberlin pl. 39, 15 var. (same); HN Italy 270 var. (same); Sydenham 10, VF, dark green patina, earthen deposits, a few flan flaws, weight 83.342 g, maximum diameter 50.5 mm, die axis 270o, Rome mint, heavy series, c. 280 B.C.; obverse fulmen (thunderbolt), four pellets (mark of value) divided across field; reverse dolphin swimming right, four pellets (mark of value) above; ex CNG auction 90 (23 May 2012), lot 1278; ex L.C. Aes Grave Collection; this coin is the only specimen on Coin Archives and the only specimen known to FORVM with the pellets above the dolphin; extremely rare variant; $2250.00 SALE PRICE $2025.00


Roman, Bronze Krater Handle Ornamented with Lions, c. 1st - 3rd Century A.D.

|Metal| |Antiquities|, |Roman,| |Bronze| |Krater| |Handle| |Ornamented| |with| |Lions,| |c.| |1st| |-| |3rd| |Century| |A.D.|
Click here to see the line drawing of Catalogue des bronzes antiques de la Bibliothque National no. 1446, a nearly identical handle in the Bibliothque nationale de France published in 1895.
AM23903. Roman bronze krater handle; cf. BnF Bronzes 1446, Superb, about as made with the addition of an an attractive green patina, c. 1st - 3rd Century A.D.; 12 cm (4 7/8") tall, on the upper part, which would have been attached atop the rim of the vessel: a lion's head faces inward, its back arching above, between two lions lying in opposite directions, on the lower part: acanthus and scrolls between two snakes with heads upward, ex Griffin Gallery of Ancient Art (Boca Raton FL); $2200.00 SALE PRICE $1980.00


Hadrian, 11 August 117 - 10 July 138 A.D., Delphi, Phokis

|Phokis|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |A.D.,| |Delphi,| |Phokis||AE| |21|
Delphi is a town on Mount Parnassus in the south of mainland Greece. It's the site of the 4th-century-B.C. Temple of Apollo, once home to a legendary oracle. This extensive mountainside archaeological complex contains the remains of the sanctuaries of Apollo and Athena Pronaia, as well as an ancient stadium and theater. Delphi Archaeological Museum displays artifacts found among the ruins.
RP111645. Bronze AE 21, RPC III 429.6 (this coin, 7 spec.); BCD Lokris 394 (this coin); Svoronos p. 36, 55, pl. XXVII, 13; BMC Central p. 28, 25 pl. IV, 16; SNG Cop 156, VF, nice green patina, light roughness, weight 5.289 g, maximum diameter 20.8 mm, die axis 0o, Delphi (Greece) mint, obverse AY KAI TPAIANOC AΔPIANOC AYΓ (Imperator Caesar Traianus Hadrianus Augustus), laureate bust of Hadrian right, bare chest (heroic bust), aegis on left shoulder; reverse ΔΕΛΦΩN, Apollo Citharoedus standing right, wearing long chiton and long chlamys, playing Kithara (lyre); ex Numismatica Ars Classica auction 55 (8 Oct 2010), lot 394 (price realized 1,500 CHF, plus fees); ex BCD Collection ; rare; $2000.00 SALE PRICE $1800.00


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 SALE PRICE $1440.00


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

|Vespasian|, |Vespasian,| |1| |July| |69| |-| |24| |June| |79| |A.D.,| |Judaea| |Capta||sestertius|
References describe the figure on the reverse as Vespasian, but on this coin he appears young - perhaps it is Titus? 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.
RB111383. Orichalcum sestertius, BMCRE II 812 (same dies), Hendin 6574 (R), RIC II-1 1181 (R), BnF III 814, Lyon 63, Hunter I -, SRCV I -, gF, near centered, brown patina with brassy areas, porosity, weight 25.456 g, maximum diameter 34.0 mm, die axis 225o, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, 72 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES VESPASIAN AVG P M TR P P P COS IIII, laureate bust right, globe at point of bust; reverse IVDAEA CAPTA, date palm tree; Vespasian (or Titus?) on left standing right with left foot on helmet, wearing military dress, vertical spear in right hand, parazonium in left hand, Jewess on right, seated right, propping head with left hand in attitude of mourning; S C (senatus consulto) in exergue; ex Noonans Mayfair auction, 13 Oct 2022, lot 402; rare; $1400.00 SALE PRICE $1260.00


Roman Judaea - Syria Palestina, Galilee, Kefar Hananya Ware, Kedera Cooking Pot, 1st - Early 5th Century A.D.

|Holy| |Land| |Antiquities|, |Roman| |Judaea| |-| |Syria| |Palestina,| |Galilee,| |Kefar| |Hananya| |Ware,| |Kedera| |Cooking| |Pot,| |1st| |-| |Early| |5th| |Century| |A.D.|
"The pots from Kefar Sihin and Kefar Hananya do not usually break." -- Rabbi Yossi, Babylonian Talmud, Shabbat 120b

Kefar Hananya was best known for production of cooking pots characterized by red-brown clay, distinctive ribbing or wheel-ridging on the body of the vessel and two handles for placing and removing the pot from the fire. Production of these cooking pots at Kefar Hananya began around 50 CE and extended to at least 430 CE. Wide-mouthed pots, most of which did not have handles (lifsa), were common in the first century BCE but began to be surpassed by the smaller-mouthed, handled cooking pot (kedera) in the first century CE.
AA99541. Judaean, kedera cooking pot, Adan-Bayewitz type 4E2 (simple rim variant), Crook fig. 4, Choice, complete and intact, two small rim chips; 14.0cm tall, 20.5cm diameter, predominantly reddish brown (Munsell color 2.5YR 5/8), some grayed areas, few white chalk grits, thin walls as typical, probably 4th century A.D.; simple rim, cylindrical neck, two strap handles from rim to shoulder, globular body with greatest diameter near the middle, wheel-ridged body and shoulder; base slightly pointed, ex Archaeological Center (Robert Deutsch, Tel Aviv, Israel, 16 Apr 2015), with photocopy of Israel Antiquities Authority export approval certificate; $1400.00 SALE PRICE $1260.00


Roman Judaea - Syria Palestina, Galilee, Kefar Hananya Ware, Kedera Cooking Pot, 1st - Early 5th Century A.D.

|Holy| |Land| |Antiquities|, |Roman| |Judaea| |-| |Syria| |Palestina,| |Galilee,| |Kefar| |Hananya| |Ware,| |Kedera| |Cooking| |Pot,| |1st| |-| |Early| |5th| |Century| |A.D.|
"The pots from Kefar Sihin and Kefar Hananya do not usually break." -- Rabbi Yossi, Babylonian Talmud, Shabbat 120b

Kefar Hananya was best known for production of cooking pots characterized by red-brown clay, distinctive ribbing or wheel-ridging on the body of the vessel and two handles for placing and removing the pot from the fire. Production of these cooking pots at Kefar Hananya began around 50 CE and extended to at least 430 CE. Wide-mouthed pots, most of which did not have handles (lifsa), were common in the first century BCE but began to be surpassed by the smaller-mouthed, handled cooking pot (kedera) in the first century CE.
AA99526. Judaean, kedera cooking pot, Adan-Bayewitz type 4E1 (variant with ridge below lip), Choice, complete and intact; 11.0cm tall, 12.5cm diameter, predominantly reddish brown (Munsell color 2.5YR 5/6), some grayed areas, few white chalk grits, light encrustations, thin walls as typical, probably early 4th - early 5th century A.D.; exterior ridge below the lip, cylindrical neck, two strap handles from rim to shoulder, globular body with greatest diameter near the middle, wheel-ridged body and shoulder; base slightly pointed, ex Archaeological Center (Robert Deutsch, Tel Aviv, Israel, 16 Apr 2015), with photocopy of Israel Antiquities Authority export approval certificate; $1400.00 SALE PRICE $1260.00


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 SALE PRICE $1125.00


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 SALE PRICE $972.00




  







Catalog current as of Wednesday, May 31, 2023.
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