The Age of Gallienus
Ancient Coin Collecting 101
Ancient Coin Prices 101
Ancient Coin Dates
Ancient Coin Lesson Plans
Ancient Coins & Modern Fakes
Ancient Oil Lamps
Ancient Wages and Prices
Ancient Weights and Scales
Anonymous Class A Folles
Armenian Numismatics Page
A Cabinet of Greek Coins
Caesarean and Actian Eras
Campgates of Constantine
A Case of Counterfeits
Byzantine Christian Themes
Coins of Pontius Pilate
Conditions of Manufacture
Corinth Coins and Cults
Countermarked in Late Antiquity
Denarii of Otho
Die Alignment 101
Dictionary of Roman Coins
Doug Smith's Ancient Coins
Edict on Prices
ERIC - Rarity Tables
The Evolving Ancient Coin Market
Facing Portrait of Augustus
Fel Temp Reparatio
Fertility Pregnancy and Childbirth
Friend or Foe
The Gallic Empire
Greek Coin Denominations
Greek Mythology Link
Greek Numismatic Dictionary
Hellenistic Names & their Meanings
Helvetica's ID Help Page
The Hexastyle Temple of Caligula
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
People in the Bible Who Issued Coins
Imperial Mints of Philip the Arab
Later Roman Coinage
Library of Ancient Coinage
Life in Ancient Rome
List of Kings of Judea
Maps of the Ancient World
Museum Collections Available Online
The [Not] Cuirassed Elephant
Not in RIC
Numismatic Excellence Award
Pi-Style Athens Tetradrachms
Pricing and Grading Roman Coins
Reading Judean Coins
Representations of Alexander the Great
Roman Coin Attribution 101
Rome and China
Satyrs and Nymphs
The Sign that Changed the World
Silver Content of Parthian Drachms
Star of Bethlehem Coins
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum
Taras Drachms with Owl Left
The Temple Tax
The Temple Tax Hoard
Travels of Paul
Tribute Penny Debate Continued (2015)
Tribute Penny Debate Revisited (2006)
Uncleaned Ancient Coins 101
What I Like About Ancient Coins
Who was Trajan Decius
Samnium, situated as it was, midway between the Greek silver-coining states of the south and the bronze-coining peoples of the north, had in early times absolutely no coinage of its own. Its pastoral village communities were indeed hardly important enough to require a separate coinage. The Samnites appear to have made use of the money of the neighbouring districts, especially of that of Campania. There are, however, two silver coins which may have been struck in Samnium towards the end of the fourth century B.C. (see A. Sambon, Mon. ant. de l'Italie, p. 104).
|Samnites? NATINYAS, Veiled female head. (Coll. Luynes, Paris.)||Spear-head within laurel-wreath.
AR 12 grs.
|Pitanatae Peripoli. Head of Hera (?) left, wearing stephane.||PERIPOLWN PITANATAN Herakles strangling lion. |
AR 10 grs.
Mommsen attributes this last coin to Samnium on the strength of a passage of Strabo (v. p. 250), who states that a Laconian colony (Pitanatae?) was established in Samnium by the Tarentines. Whether this attribution is to be preferred to that given in the first edition of this work, viz. Peripolium, an outpost of the Locrians on the frontier of their territory towards Rhegium, is a doubtful matter, but as two specimens have been found in Samnium Mommsen's attribution is probably correct.
It is not until after the final subjection of Samnium by the Romans, circa B.C. 290, that we find the towns of Aesernia, Aquilonia, Beneventum, and Telesia striking bronze coins, similar in style to those of Campania.
Aesernia (Isernia), near the sources of 'the Vulturnus, obtained the title and rights of a Latin colony in B.C. 263. Its coinage resembles that of the Campanian towns Cales, Suessa Aurunca, and Teanum Sidicinum. The head of Vulcan is appropriate in a country where earthquakes are of frequent occurrence, supposing that the connexion between seismic and volcanic phenomena was recognized in the third century B.C. The Bull with the human head is a type borrowed from the coins of Neapolis.
|VOCANOM Head of Vulcan.||AISERNINO, etc. Zeus thundering in
biga; above, often, Victory.
AE Size .8
|AISERNIO, AISERNINO, AISERNI- NOM, etc. Head of Apollo.||Man-headed bull with human face
crowned by Victory. |
AE Size .8
|AISERNIO or AISERNINO Head of Athena.||Eagle and serpent.
AE Size .8
Concerning the inscriptions see Conway, Italic Dialects, p. 199, and Berl. Cat., III. i. p. 55.
Aquilonia. There were two towns of this name in Samnium, one near Bovianum, the other not far from the borders of Apulia. It is doubtful to which of these places the coins belong. See Conway, Italic Dialects, p. 171.
|Head of Athena.||Armed warrior holding patera. |
AE Size .8
According to Livy (x. 46), Papirius Cursor after the battle of Aquilonia, B.C. 293, carried off to Rome 'aeris gravis vicies centies millies et quingenta triginta tria milliai', together with 1,830 pounds of silver. We must not understand this as implying that the 2,533,000 pounds of bronze was actually money of Samnium. It is merely the sum in Roman money of the value of the spoil.
Beneventum (Benevento). The undoubted coins of this town are certainly subsequent to B.C. 268, when its name was changed from Maloentum or Malventum to Beneventum by the Romans who planted a colony there.
|BENVENTOD Head of Apollo.||Prancing horse and PROPOM or PROM PRO. |
There are, however, smaller bronze coins which, if correctly attributed, must be assigned to the period before the change of name.
|Head of Apollo.||MAIES (?) Bull with human face; above, helmet.|
|MAIES (?) Female head.||Similar type; but above, mask of Seilenos.|
See Sambon, op. cit., pp. 108, 114.
Telesia (Telese), in the valley of the Calor. Unique bronze coin (Coll. Santangelo, Naples), B.C. 263-250, with Oscan inscription.
|Head of Athena.||SIRET (transliterated by Conway, p. 196, Telis) Cock and star. |
For the types of this coin see under Aquinum (supra p. 26).