Saturday, November 12, 2005
Silvered Æ denarius, Gallienus, Rome, Göbl 666t
IMP GALLIENVS AVG, Laureate head right | FORTVNA REDVX, Fortuna standing left, holding rudder on globe in right hand and cornucopia in left.
Slowly they trickle in, the denarii, with designs like those of the antoninianii, but smaller and with the emperor wearing a laurel wreath rather than Sol's radiate crown. Their attraction is their scarceness and the appeal of having what others don't. There must be something to be learned from an economy where the lower-value coins are less common than the higher-valued ones. To this day our annual production of 1-cent coins is roughly equal to all other denominations combined. We depend on cash, though, less than the Romans did.
Friday, November 11, 2005
Æ30, Side in Pamphylia, Valerian II, SNG Copenhagen 434
KAI CEB ΠOV ΛIK KOPO VAΛEPIANON CA, Bare-headed draped bust right over eagle with wings spread. E countermark before. | CIΔHTΩN N_EΩKOPΩN, Athena standing left, holding long palm right, dropping pebble into amphora.
Dark patinas are difficult to photograph well. I post a coin every day, but I buy less frequently than that. Today, I'm reduced to posting poor photos. Eventally I'll be forced to post ones that I've posted previously.
Thursday, November 10, 2005
Silvered Æ antoninianus, Gallienus, Cyzikus, Göbl 1629d
GALLIENVS AVG, Radiate draped cuirassed bust right, no pellets beneath | VICTORIA AVG, Victory walking left, placing shield on pedestal to her left with both hands. SPQR in exergue.
The Gallienus coins assigned to Cyzikus are of special interest to me, and I'm always pleased to glom onto one new to me. They're distinguished by the SPQR in the exergue and by the use of zero, one, or two pellets beneath the bust, presumably to signify which officina, or workshop, was responsible for the coin.
These elements are also seen in the first emission of Claudius II Gothicus, who succeeded Gallienus, but not thereafter, when coins assigned to the mint at Cyzikus become very different.
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
VIRTVS PROBI AVG, Radiate, helmeted and cuirassed bust left holding spear and shield. Horseman prancing right on shield | ADVENTVS PROBI AVG, Probus on horseback left holding hand aloft, bound captive below. Γ in exergue.
After the defeat and death of Florian in 276 CE, Marcus Aurelius Probus was acclaimed emperor by his armies, which was quickly ratified by the Senate.
Probus successfully campaigned against barbarians on the empire's border and usurpers within that border.
Legend has Probus dieing in 282 when, fearing idleness among the troops, he offended them by urging them to public works-type labor in the marshes. Less romantically, the praetorian prefect Carus had raised a rebellion at Sirmium, and Probus was killed by troops that went over to Carus.
Photo hosted courtesy of Ancients.info
Tuesday, November 08, 2005
Æ25, Anazarbus in Cilicia, Valerian, SNG Copenhagen 58
AVT K [..] VAΛEPIANOC CE, Radiate draped cuirassed bust right | ANAZAPB[...]OΔ, Prize crown with palm, on table. Γ A in left field, Γ T in right field, H K between table legs, ET B OC in exergue.
The coins of Valerian from this city all seem to be marked ET BOC, a date mark for year 272 counting from the incorporation of the city into the Roman empire in 19 BCE, so 253-254 Common Era, the first year of Valerian's reign.
Monday, November 07, 2005
Silvered Æ antoninianus, Gallienus, Antioch, Göbl 1629d
GALLIENVS AVG, Radiate cuirassed bust right | GENIVS AVG, Genius standing left, with right hand sacrificing from patera, with left hand holding cornucopia. Branch in exergue.
A complex little series GENIO/GENIV/GENIVS AVG, with a variety of busts and with or without the branch in exergue that signifies the observance of the emperor's decennalia. This particular combination isn't attested by Göbl.
Sunday, November 06, 2005
Æ19, Phocaea in Ionia, quasi-autonomous, SNG Copenhagen 1060
ΦΩ_KEA, Turreted bust of nymph Phokaia right | ΦΩKAIE / ΩN, Dog, standing right, attacking dolphin.
I recently posted about a coin with a similar obverse, from Aegae in Aeolis, and mentioned then that similar coins were produced in other cities of Aeolis.
This coin, from Phocaea in Ionia, originates close to the border with Aeolis.