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Otho denarii


I will include coins that I have now or have owned earlier. Unfortunately I did not file the size, weight and die-axis of the ones I have passed on. Die-axis is nearly invariably 6, rarely 5 or 7. Most of the coins have been illustrated in sales catalogues either before I obtained them or later on. I will try to add the information for those in the future. All Otho denarii and aurei were minted in Rome during a very short time period, maximum of 94 days.
There is an article in the Forum library dealing with various aspects of these coins: of Otho
I have reorganized the coins according to putative issues. The first one with obverse legend IMP M OTHO, the second one with obverse legend IMP OTHO and the third one with obverse legend IMP OTHO combined with the PONT MAX reverse.

73 files, last one added on Jun 07, 2016
Album viewed 21 times

Provincial Otho: Alexandria


According to RPC, five denominations were struck for Otho in Alexandria:
hemidrachm, two types
diobol, two types, both with two different legends
obol, two different legends
tetradrachm, five types, all with or without a simpulum on the reverse
The weights and sizes of the bronzes vary greatly and a heavy obol can be heavier than a light diobol and the lightest hemidrachms weigh less than the heaviest diobols. The types are quite different, however.

24 files, last one added on Jun 07, 2016
Album viewed 12 times

Provincial Otho: Antioch & Mallus


In addition to the Antiochian coins, I have included a unique piece from Mallus, Cilicia. Although with a puzzling obverse legend, the portrait and bevelled flan certainly suggest Otho. This coin was not known to the authors of RPC.
The sizes and weights of the Syrian coins are fairly constant. McAlee points out that the SC bronzes have small dots on the reverse in different positions: between the letters, above them etc. This variation is not noted in RPC. Butcher suggests that the smaller sized bronzes with the legate´s name is known in both obverse variations, clockwise and anti-clockwise. According to McAlee this is not so. RPC does not know these two types for the large bronzes with the legate reverse, but these are known. Most likely both existed for both types, but are very rare nowdays.

9 files, last one added on Oct 07, 2012
Album viewed 8 times

Ancient Otho forgeries


Most contemporary Otho forgeries unite the obverse portrait and/or legend incorrectly with the reverse type. Usually the coins have a copper core and are plated with a silver-foil. Forgeries made with low-grade silver and having a close to pure silver surface exist as well. These were made by treating the flans with acid and minting them after that. This method was in use in the offical Rome mint as well when devaluation was needed.

10 files, last one added on Jun 07, 2016
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Modern Otho fakes


Two "types" of modern fakes seem to circulate widely nowdays. The heavy, bright silvery struck coins are fairly eay to spot and as the dies are few in number, the ones made look old should cause little trouble. The other group consists of coins that are much harder to recognize as fakes. They are exact copies of real coins and usually in the mid-price range of the market. Often the host is sold via the auction houses as well, but another time. This seems to happen in Europe all the time. Fortunately most of these cannot be struck (because of the irregular flan) and are cast with a fairly standard method. By looking at details in the deeply set regions of the coins these casts can be recognized for what they are. I have included images of a RIC 22 fake and a real coin made with the same dies.

19 files, last one added on Apr 05, 2018
Album viewed 42 times

Fictitious Otho AE and similar things


7 files, last one added on Oct 13, 2012
Album viewed 5 times

Galba silver & gold


The coinage of Galba is poorly understood. The number of types is high and many issues are rare. RIC I was updated in 1984, but this work is far from complete. The peculiar thing is that no fewer than 22 types of denarii were omitted from the new edition and published by Sutherland himself the same year! These can be found in "Numismatica e Antichità Classiche Vol. XIII (1984), p. 171-182, 2 pls." A copy of this publication can be obtained from the ANS library.
In this gallery I will list the coins according to the RIC number plus the name of the mint. In addition to Rome, there is Tarraco in modern Spain, Carthage in modern Tunis and several mints in "Gallia". The locations of these mints are open to question, but I have followed RIC and placed the coins to Lugdunum, Narbo or Vienna.

29 files, last one added on Mar 11, 2013
Album viewed 5 times

Vitellius denarii


For the mints, I have followed RIC I (2nd ed.) as I did with Galba, although there are clearly problems with Spain versus Gaul here as well. The Rome coins are arranged so that the chronological sequence seen in the obverse legends, i.e. "GERMANICUS > GERMAN > GERM" is clear. Most of the portraits in the early coins with the "Germanicus" legend are so similar to those of Othos that they may well have been struck with re-cut Otho dies. Actual mules combining a Vitellius obverse and an Otho reverse are known.

29 files, last one added on Oct 25, 2012
Album viewed 7 times

Domitianus denarii


My interest in Domitianus started when I read Ian Carradice's thesis from the early 1980s. One thing that caught my eye was the fact that on the basis of hoard evidence, he was able to show that certain denarius issues were very rare in comparison with others. This information was not reflected in the prices of these coins - most people would not care and very few actually knew. I kept hunting these unusual "trp/cos" combinations for years and with considerable success. The substantial collection I built turned out to be useful for silver content analyses as well as for the new edition of RIC II.i. After RIC II.i was published I felt the coins had served their purpose for me and the bulk of them have been dispersed. Many were sold though a few well-known dealers, the largest single collection, 40 rare issues, was obtained by the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, UK. During the building of the collection many people helped me, but I want to thank one especially, Barry Murphy.
The fourth issue of year 85 CE is one of my favourites. It is recognized by TRP IIII on the obverse and CENS POT on the reverse. All four Minerva types and the Germania type should exist both with and without aegis. Minerva type 1 and the Germania type are not known without aegis but they will pop up one day. The two preceeding issues with CENSORIA POTESTAT and CENSORIA POTES had only portraits with aegis and the following issue with IMP V and CENS POT only portraits without aegis. A die-study would be interesting - did the dies cross the borders during this very short time and specially between the CENSORIA POTES and CENSORIA POT line, when the silver content was lowered?

50 files, last one added on Oct 30, 2012
Album viewed 39 times


9 albums on 1 page(s)

Last additions - jmuona's Gallery
This "Otho" with "VÍCTORIA PR" reverse is an ingenious fabrication created by the famous forger "Tardani". He had obviously realized that there were a few VICTORIA OTHONIS dies recut from Galba's VICTORIA PR dies and created this fictitious but possible coin with copies of real dies. I used to have this coin and another with the same dies is in the Berlin coin cabinet. Both are overweight, around 3.9 gr. It took some time to find a Galba minted with this particular reverse die but finally I succeeded. The final proof is seen in this coin, there are a few regions were the die has broken, ie before the die ever could have been used for an Otho coin. The coin is quite convincing because of the dies, but the surfaces were a bit strange and the legends unusual in profile.jmuonaApr 05, 2018
RIC 8 replicaCast replica based on real dies, offered as a gift to ?businesspeople and including "authentication" for the replica's quality by an offical source.jmuonaJun 07, 2016
RIC 8 replicaThis box contained the three replicas: Galba, Otho, Vitellius-jmuonaJun 07, 2016
Third_RIC 22jmuonaJun 07, 2016
RPC5370Obol, long obverse legend. RPC lists one coin.jmuonaJun 07, 2016
RIC 22 Modern fakeI have chosen to call this a Modern fake, although I believe it to be from the late 1800s. Fakes with the same obverse or an obverse very similar to this exist both in gold and silver. There are other examples in my gallery as well.jmuonaJun 07, 2016
RIC 8 Ancient counterfeitThis type with a smile never seen in a genuine coin is known from many collections. e.g. Paris.jmuonaJun 07, 2016
RIC 16 Ancient counterfeitConsidering how uncommon this type is as a genuine Rome mint product, the plated ones are really surprisingly frequent.jmuonaJun 07, 2016
RIC 16 Ancient counterfeitYet another counterfeit of this type. Plated and if intact, this would be quite convincing even today.jmuonaJun 07, 2016
Third_RIC 22Five different dies with Otho on horseback (RIC 22) are known. Two of them I have included as separate coins in this gallery, the three remaining ones are united in one image here. The die on the right is known from a single coin. jmuonaApr 11, 2013
First_RIC 8Although there appears to be nothing unusual about this coin, closer inspection reveals it is very unusual. The change in hair-do was abrupt between the IMP M and IMP obverses, but a couple of dies have survived with the old, long obverse inscription and the late hair-do with no free-flying locks present anymore. This is the least rare of them, a few coins minted with this distinctive obverse die are known.jmuonaMar 14, 2013
Otho-Vespasian muleThis coin I failed to obtain, but I suspect it may be an authentic Ancient counterfeit combining a Second/Third period Otho obverse with a Vespasian reverse. Said to have been found in UK by a detectorist. Very interesting. UPDATE: another coin combining a similar type of obverse and Domitian as Caesar reverse was sold on ebay recently. It is definitely more suspicious and I regard it as a modern forgery. This coin may be of same stock as well.jmuonaMar 13, 2013

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