Sergia


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     SERGIA, a family of high patrician rank,
which, according to Virgil (Aeneid. v. 121), referred
its origin to Sergestus, the companion of Aenas :

 Sergestusque, domus tenet a quo Sergia nomen.

From this stock sprang Catilina, the mortal
enemy of Cicero, and the profligately daring
conspirator against the very existence of Rome
itself. Its coins are silver, and exhibit the word
Silus as the surname of the Sergia family.
There is only one type, but that claims notice
as being of historical interest, as follows : --
     On the obverse is the winged head of Minerva :
behind which is ROMA, and before it EX. S. C. --
On the reverse M. SERGI. SILVS. A horseman
helmeted and in military habit, riding at speed,
holding in his left hand a human head and a
sword.
     This denarius represents a Roman veteran,
named M. Sergius, a prodigy of courage and
fortitude, as evinced by his exploits in the Gallic
and Hannibalic wars. Respecting this extraordinary
man there is a remarkable passage in
Pliny (1. vii. 29), who describes Sergius as
having lost his right hand in one battle, and in
two campaigns receiving three and twenty
wounds -- yet fighting four times with his left
hand only -- and afterwards having made for
himself an iron right hand, fastening it on (the
stump) and again skirmishing in mortal combat
with the foe! To this Sergius, Eckhel considers
the coin relates.

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