- The Collaborative Numismatics Project
  Explore Our Website And Find Joy In The History, Numismatics, Art, Mythology, And Geography Of Coins!!! NumisWiki Is An Enormous Unique Resource Including Hundreds Of Books And Thousands Of Articles Online!!! The Column On The Left Includes Our "Best of NumisWiki" Menu If You Are New To Collecting - Start With Ancient Coin Collecting 101 NumisWiki Includes The Encyclopedia of Roman Coins and Historia Nummorum If You Have Written A Numismatic Article - Please Add It To NumisWiki All Blue Text On The Website Is Linked - Keep Clicking To ENDLESSLY EXPLORE!!! Please Visit Our Shop And Find A Coin You Love Today!!!

× Resources Home
New Articles
Most Popular
Recent Changes
Current Projects
Admin Discussions
How to
Index Of All Titles


Aes Grave
Aes Rude
The Age of Gallienus
Alexander Tetradrachms
Ancient Coin Collecting 101
Ancient Coin Prices 101
Ancient Coin Dates
Ancient Coin Lesson Plans
Ancient Coins & Modern Fakes
Ancient Counterfeits
Ancient Glass
Ancient Oil Lamps
Ancient Weapons
Ancient Wages and Prices
Ancient Weights and Scales
Anonymous Folles
Anonymous Follis
Anonymous Class A Folles
Antioch Officinae
Armenian Numismatics Page
Byzantine Denominations
A Cabinet of Greek Coins
Caesarean and Actian Eras
Campgates of Constantine
A Case of Counterfeits
Byzantine Christian Themes
Clashed Dies
Coins of Pontius Pilate
Conditions of Manufacture
Corinth Coins and Cults
Countermarked in Late Antiquity
Danubian Celts
Damnatio Coinage
Damnatio Memoriae
Denarii of Otho
Diameter 101
Die Alignment 101
Dictionary of Roman Coins
Doug Smith's Ancient Coins
Edict on Prices
ERIC - Rarity Tables
Etruscan Alphabet
The Evolving Ancient Coin Market
Facing Portrait of Augustus
Fel Temp Reparatio
Fertility Pregnancy and Childbirth
Friend or Foe
The Gallic Empire
Gallienus Zoo
Greek Alphabet
Greek Coins
Greek Dates
Greek Coin Denominations
Greek Mythology Link
Greek Numismatic Dictionary
Hellenistic Names & their Meanings
Hasmonean Dynasty
Helvetica's ID Help Page
The Hexastyle Temple of Caligula
Historia Numorum
Horse Harnesses
Identifying Ancient Metal Arrowheads
Illustrated Ancient Coin Glossary
Important Collection Auctions
Islamic Rulers and Dynasties
Julian II: The Beard and the Bull
Julius Caesar - The Funeral Speech
Kushan Coins
People in the Bible Who Issued Coins
Imperial Mints of Philip the Arab
Later Roman Coinage
Latin Plurals
Latin Pronunciation
Library of Ancient Coinage
Life in Ancient Rome
List of Kings of Judea
Malloy Weapons
Maps of the Ancient World
Military Belts
Mint Marks
Museum Collections Available Online
Nabataean Alphabet
Nabataean Numerals
The [Not] Cuirassed Elephant
Not in RIC
Numismatic Bulgarian
Numismatic Excellence Award
Numismatic French
Numismatic German
Numismatic Italian
Numismatic Spanish
Parthian Coins
Patina 101
Paleo-Hebrew Alphabet
Phoenician Alphabet
Pi-Style Athens Tetradrachms
Pricing and Grading Roman Coins
Reading Judean Coins
Representations of Alexander the Great
Roman Coin Attribution 101
Roman Militaria
Roman Mints
Roman Names
Rome and China
Satyrs and Nymphs
Serdi Celts
The Sign that Changed the World
Silver Content of Parthian Drachms
Star of Bethlehem Coins
Statuary Coins
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum
Syracusian Folles
Taras Drachms with Owl Left
The Temple Tax
The Temple Tax Hoard
Test Cut
Travels of Paul
Tribute Penny
Tribute Penny Debate Continued (2015)
Tribute Penny Debate Revisited (2006)
Tyrian Shekels
Uncleaned Ancient Coins 101
Venus Cloacina
What I Like About Ancient Coins
Who was Trajan Decius
Widow's Mite

   View Menu


Please add updates or make corrections to the NumisWiki text version as appropriate.

Ludos saeculares fecit Consul XIIII. The Emperor (Domitian) caused to be celebrated - or rather under the reign of Domitian, and during his 14th Consulate, the secular games were celebrated, about the year of Rome 841; 104 years after those of Augustus, and 41 after those of Claudius. The coin above, in second brass, commemorates this event.

Of all the medals struck under different Emperors in commemoration of the secular games, none are more curious, none are more replete with antiquarian interest, than those of Domitian, representing the solemn ceremonies of these games. On one of these (a denarius) we see a man habited in the toga, standing near a cippis inscribed as above, and wearing on his head a helmet, whence spring two wings; in his right hand he holds a small staff, and in his left a round buckler.

This figure, it is conjectured, is that of the herald whose duty it was to announce the celebration of the games; or perhaps one of the quindecemvirs who presided at them. The same figure (says Millin) is found on coins of the Sanguinia family, of which the type recalls the memory of those secular games which Augustus reestablished (VC 737), and when one of the members of the above named family was monetary triumvir.

On a first brass of the same emperor, bearing the same legend, we see his figure standing, clothed in the toga, holding a patera in his right hand, and performing a sacrifice before an altar.

Near the emperor, a woman holding a cornucopiae is seated on the ground; whilst on the other side we see a harper, a flute player. and a popa (or priest that slew the victims) with a sow. The woman we see on the ground, says Eckhel, is Tellus, or Mother Earth: the fertile nurse of all living creatures, characterised as such by the horn of planty. The sow which we see brought to the altar is destined to be sacrificed to her, as the verses of the Sibylls, quoted in Zosimus, indicate, by mentioning the hog and the black sow as fit immolations to the Goddess of the Fertile Earth. Hence also Horace, amongst other deities, to whom vows were accustomed to be made, invokes Tellus, in the Carman Saeculare:
Fertilis frugum, precorisque Tellus
Spocea donet Cererem corona.

On another first brass of Domitian, bearing the same legend of LVD SAEC FEC COS XIIII S C, the emperor stands in front of a temple, holding a patera over a lighted altar; opposite him is a man seated on the ground with a harp in his hand; behind are two flute players.

On a second brass of Domitian, the emperor is seen in the act of sacrificing at a lighted altar, whilst one popa holds down an ox, the second popa strikes him with an axe.

This type refers to the custom which prevailed at the secular games of offering up white bulls to Jupiter and Juno, and black ones to Pluto and Poserpine, as Horace says: Quaeque vos bobus veneratur albis.

Sheep and goats were also sacrificed on these occasions, as may be remarked on other second brass coins of Domitian, which bear equally specific reference to the secular games.

On a first brass of the same emperor, we see a river personified in a recumbent posture, and holding a cornucopiae.

This river, says Eckhel, is the Tiber; for, according to the laws of these games, as Zosimus instructs us, the victims were immolated on the bank of the Tibar, near the Campus Martius, at the spot called Terentum.

On a first brass of Domitian the emperor appears clothed in the toga, and holding a volumen, or roll of papyrus, in his left hand; behind him is another togated man; whilst near himis a procession of three young persons, whose hands are raised, and who hold palm branches.

This type has relation to the 27 boys and the 27 girls, who (ambos parentes adhuc superstites habent) had both parents still surviving, and who chanted hymns in Latin and Greek.

Horace illustrates this custom thus in his Carm. Sac.:
Condiito mitis, placidusque telo
Supplices audi pueros, Apollo;
Siderum regina bicornis audi
Luna, puellus.

And Catullus still more pointedly:
Diana sumus in fide
Puellae, et pueri integri,
Dianam pueri integri,
Puellaque canamus.

On a first brass also of Domitian, which on its obverse bears his laureated head, with the newly assumed title of CEN PER, and which on the reverse is notified as having been struck in the 14th Consulate (COS XIIII).

View whole page from the Dictionary Of Roman Coins
All coins are guaranteed for eternity