Saturday, November 26, 2005

Billon antoninianus, Valerian II, Rome, Göbl 265g 

DIVO CAES VALERIANO, Radiate head right | CONSECRATIO, Eagle standing facing with wings open, head left, S in exergue.

The oldest son of Gallienus, Cornelius Licinius Valerianus died in late 257 or early 258. He was remembered as needing a haircut, it seems.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Æ31, Tabae in Caria, Gallienus, SNG Copenhagen 574 

AV KAI ΠO ΛI ΓAΛΛIHNOC, Laureate draped cuirassed bust right, large B before | APX IACONOC CIΛBOV TABHNΩN, Tyche standing left, holding rudder with right hand and cornucopia with left.

A travel agency page on Tabae. Not much there.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Æ sestertius, Gallienus, Rome, Göbl 66h 

IMP C P LIC GALLIENVS P F AVG, Laureate cuirassed bust right | LIBERALITAS AVGG, Liberalitas standing left, holding counting-board in right hand and cornucopia in left. S_C across fields.

This was, it seems, excavated some time ago, since marking coins with india ink, as on the obverse here, has gone very much out of fashion.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Billon antoninianus, Carus, Antioch, RIC 125 

IMP C M AVR CARVS P F AVG, Radiate draped cuirassed bust right | VIRTVS AVGGG, To right, Carus in military dress standing left, holding spear in left hand, with right receiving Victory on Globe from Jove, left. Star in upper field, B in lower field, XXI in exergue.

Marcus Aurelius Carus served as praetorian prefect under Probus, in whose death he may have had a hand.

“AVGGG” in the reverse legend is a curious abbreviated way of indicating three Augusti, Carus and his sons Carinus and Numerian. Numerian held the title of Caesar, not Augustus, during the reign of Carus.

While successfully warring with the Persians in Summer 283, Carus suddenly turned up dead, purportedly from an unseen lightning strike. His praetorian prefect Arrius Aper may have had more to do with it than Jove's thunderbolts.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Æ35, Tarsus in Cilicia, Valerian, SNG Levante 1182 

AVT [KAI Π OVAΛEP]IANON EV / C C, Radiate draped cuirassed bust right, Π before and behind | TAPC MHTP_OΠOΛEΩ, Radiate Helios, chlamys draped over shoulders, standing left, right hand raised, globe in left hand. A / M / K in left field, Γ / B in right field.

A different view of Helios than I've seen before from this city, the first Tarsus issues for Valerian were quite large, like this 35mm example, where subsequent issues, still big coins, were noticeably scaled-down.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Billon antoninianus, Gallienus, Rome, Göbl 27t 

IMP VALERIANVS AVG, Radiate draped cuirassed bust right | FELICITAS AVGG, Felicitas standing left, holding long caduceus with right hand and cornucopia with left.

I originally had doubts about the authenticity of this 17.5x19.5mm coin, but it roughly matches the size of Göbl's plate coin, so my doubts seem misplaced. My speculation now is that, having already debased the alloy as far as possible while still retaining some resemblance to silver, the next step would be to reduce the size of the coins.

Later techniques would be developed for producing a silvery appearance on the surface of coins containing even worse alloys, which would accompany a slight recovery in size.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Æ26, Ephesus in Ionia, Salonina, unknown 

CAΛ XPVCOΓ[ONH CE], Diademed draped bust right on crescent | APTEMIC EΦEC[IΩN, Artemis advancing right, drawing bow, hound running at feet.

Similar to Tuesday's post, this is another one of many similar designs from Ephesus featuring Artemis as huntress.

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