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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Roman Coins| ▸ |The Imperators| ▸ |Marc Antony||View Options:  |  |  | 

Mark Antony, Triumvir and Imperator, 44 - 30 B.C.

Mark Antony was military commander for Julius Caesar during his conquest of Gaul and administrator of Italy while Caesar eliminated his opponents in Greece, Africa, and Spain. After Caesar's assassination in 44 B.C., Antony joined Lepidus and Caesar's adoptive son Octavian in a three-man dictatorship known as the Second Triumvirate. They defeated Caesar's murderers, the Liberatores, at the Battle of Philippi in 42 B.C. and divided the Republic among themselves. Antony took the east, including Egypt, ruled by Queen Cleopatra, and command of Rome's war against Parthia. Relations within the Triumvirate were strained but civil war was averted when Antony married Octavian's sister Octavia. Despite the marriage, Antony continued his affair with Cleopatra and even married her. The Triumvirate broke up in 33 B.C. and erupted into civil war in 31 B.C. At Octavian's direction, the Roman Senate declared war on Cleopatra and proclaimed Antony a traitor. Octavian defeated Antony at the Battle of Actium the same year. Defeated, Antony and Cleopatra fled back to Egypt where they committed suicide. With Antony dead, Octavian was the undisputed master of the Roman world and would reign as the first Roman emperor with the title Augustus.


Mark Antony and Octavia, 39 B.C., Ephesos, Ionia

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The obverse legend abbreviates Consul Designatus, Iterum et Tertium, meaning Consul Elect for the second and third time. The reverse legend abbreviates Triumvir Reipublicae Constituendae, the title adopted in November of 43 B.C. by the three Caesarian leaders (Mark Antony, Octavian, and Lepidus) when they formed the Second Triumvirate to oppose the tyrannicides Brutus and Cassius.
SH86609. Silver cistophoric tetradrachm, RPC I 2202, Sydenham 1198, Crawford 263, RSC Octavia and M. Antony 3, Sear CRI 263, BMCRR East 135, SRCV I 1513, Choice gVF, toned, well centered, some die wear and rust, scratches, weight 11.723 g, maximum diameter 27.1 mm, die axis 0o, Ephesos mint, summer - autumn 39 B.C.; obverse M ANTONIVS IMP COS DESIG ITER ET TERT (Consul Elect for the 2nd and 3rd time), conjoined head of Antony and bust of Octavia right, Antony nearer and wreathed in ivy, Octavia draped; reverse Dionysus standing half left on cista mystica, in his right hand, thyrsus in his left hand, flanked by two interlaced snakes with heads erect, III VIR (triumvir) downward on left, R P C (Reipublicae Constituendae) upward on right; $2400.00 (2112.00)


Mark Antony, Triumvir and Imperator, 44 - 30 B.C., LEG VI - Ferrata, the "Ironclad"

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The VI Ferrata, the "Ironclad," was an old legion of Caesar's that fought for Antony. It was retained by Augustus and later served in Syria and Judaea. The VI Victrix, on the other hand, was one of Octavian's legions. This Marcus Aurelius and Lucius Verus issued a 'restitution' of the type, presumably in connection with the latter's Eastern campaigns.
SH91681. Silver denarius, Crawford 544/19, Sydenham 1223, BMCRR II East 197, RSC I 33, Sear CRI 356, Choice VF, attractive old cabinet toning, well centered and struck, flow lines, a few bumps/scratches, weight 3.819 g, maximum diameter 18.4 mm, die axis 225o, Patrae(?) mint, 32 - 31 B.C.; obverse ANTAVG / III VIRRPC, galley right with rowers, mast with banners at prow; reverse LEG - VI, aquila (legionary eagle) between two legionary standards; from the Maxwell Hunt Collection; $550.00 (484.00)


Mark Antony, Triumvir and Imperator, 44 - 30 B.C., Struck by Octavian

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According to Livy, the caduceus, a symbol of peace, was sometimes carried by diplomats sent to negociate a treaty. Antony and Octavian allied to defeat Caesar's assassins, but after defeating Brutus and Cassius, each was determined to obtain absolute power. While Antony was in Egypt, his brother and his wife gathered an army to remove Octavian but they were defeated. Antony and Octavian met with their armies at Brundisium, but the legions, both Caesarian, refused to fight. The two men reached an agreement. This is when this coin was struck by Octavian's mint with Antony's portrait on the obverse. It appeared that peace was finally reigning in the Roman world, but it only was a short calm before another storm.
RR89740. Silver denarius, Crawford 529/3, Sydenham 1328, Sear CRI 303, BMCRR II Gaul 94, Russo RBW 1817, RSC I Mark Antony 5, F, uneven toning, light marks, weight 3.488 g, maximum diameter 20.7 mm, die axis 270o, travelling mint with Octavian mint, 39 B.C.; obverse ANTONIVS IMP, bare head right; reverse CAESAR - IMP (counterclockwise below), winged caduceus; rare; $500.00 (440.00)


Roman Republic, Second Triumvirate, Mark Antony and Octavian, 40 - 39 B.C.

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In 40 B.C., with the Treaty of Brundisium, the Triumvir Rei Publica Constituende (Three Men for the Restoration of the Republic) agreed to divide the Roman Republic into spheres of influence. Gaius Octavian, who took the name Caesar, controlled the Western provinces. Mark Antony controlled the Eastern provinces; the River Drin, the boundary between the provinces Illyricum and Macedonia, would serve as their frontier. Marcus Aemilius Lepidus controlled Hispania and Africa. The treaty was cemented by the marriage of Antony and Octavia, sister of Octavian.
SH91537. Silver denarius, Crawford 528/3; Sydenham 1194; RSC I Mark Antony and Augustus 2; BMCRR East 123; Sear CRI 251; SRCV I 1506, F, old cabinet toning, well centered, some die wear, banker's mark, scratches, tiny test cut on edge, weight 3.660 g, maximum diameter 19.4 mm, die axis 90o, struck by Antony (in Syria?), traveling military mint, Autumn 41 B.C.; obverse M ANTON IMP IIIVIR R P C AVG (Marcus Antonius, imperator, triumvir rei publica constituende, augur), bare head of Antony right; reverse CAESAR PONT IIIVIR R P C (Caesar, pontifex, triumvir rei publica constituende), bare head of Octavian right; from the Maxwell |Hunt| Collection; very scarce; $400.00 (352.00)


Antonia, Daughter of Mark Antony, Wife of Nero Drusus, Mother of Claudius, Grandmother of Caligula

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Antonia was daughter of Marc Antony and Octavia, wife of Nero Claudius Drusus, sister-in-law of Tiberius, mother of Claudius, and grandmother of Caligula. Renowned for her beauty and virtue, Antonia spent her long life revered by the Roman people and enjoyed many honors conferred upon her by her relatives. All her coinage was issued early in the reign of Claudius. She died around 37 A.D., possibly as a result of forced suicide ordered by Caligula.
RP91440. Orichalcum dupondius, RIC I Claudius 92, BMCRE I Claudius 166, Cohen I 6, BnF II Claudius 143, SRCV I 1902, aVF, green patina, centered on a tight flan, corrosion, weight 14.008 g, maximum diameter 28.0 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, c. 41 - 50 A.D.; obverse ANTONIA AVGVSTA, bare-headed bust right, hair in long plait; reverse TI CLAVDIVS CAESAR AVG P M TR P IMP, Claudius standing left, veiled and togate, simpulum in right, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field; from the Maxwell |Hunt| Collection; $230.00 (202.40)


Fulvia, Second Wife of Marc Antony, Autumn - December 43 B.C.

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In 42 BC, Antony and Octavian left Rome to pursue Julius Caesar's assassins. Fulvia was left behind as the most powerful woman in Rome. Cassius Dio wrote that she "..managed affairs herself, so that neither the senate nor the people transacted any business contrary to her pleasure." When Octavian returned in 41 BC, he accused Fulvia of aiming at supreme power. With Lucius Antonius, she raised eight legions to fight against Octavian, an event known as the Perusine War. Octavian's soldiers at Perusia used sling bullets inscribed with insults directed at Fulvia personally. Octavian besieged and starved Lucius into surrender in February 40 BC, after which Fulvia fled to Greece. Anthony reconciled with Octavian, blaming Fulvia for their quarrel. Fulvia, in exile at Sicyon, died soon after of an unknown illness. Anthony married Octavian's sister Octavia, and she reared all of Fulvia's children.
SH91438. Silver quinarius, Crawford 489/5, Sear CRI 122, Sydenham 1160, RSC I 4, RPC I 512, BMCRR Gaul 40, SRCV I 1518, aVF, old collection toning, struck with dirty dies, bumps and scratches, reverse off center, weight 1.476 g, maximum diameter 12.8 mm, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, autumn - Dec 43 B.C.; obverse winged bust of Victory right, with the likeness of Fulvia; reverse LVGV/DVNI (counterclockwise, in exergue and above), lion walking right, flanked by A - XL (year 40, Anthony's age); from the Maxwell |Hunt| Collection, ex Pegasi Coins; scarce; $160.00 (140.80)







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REFERENCES|

Babelon, E. Monnaies de la Republique Romaine. (Paris, 1885).
Banti, A. & L. Simonetti. Corpus Nummorum Romanorum. (Florence, 1972-1979).
Carson, R. Principal Coins of the Romans, Vol. I: The Republic, c. 290-31 BC. (London, 1978).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappes sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 1: Pompey to Domitian. (Paris, 1880).
Crawford, M. Roman Republican Coinage. (Cambridge, 1974).
Grueber, H. Coins of the Roman Republic in The British Museum. (London, 1910).
Russo, R. The RBW Collection of Roman Republican Coins. (Zurich, 2013).
Rutter, N. ed. Historia Numorum. Italy. (London, 2001).
Seaby, H., D. Sear, & R. Loosley. Roman Silver Coins, Volume I, The Republic to Augustus. (London, 1989).
Sear, D. The History and Coinage of the Roman Imperators 49 - 27 BC. (London, 1998).
Sear, D. Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. 1, The Republic and the Twelve Caesars 280 BC - AD 86. (London, 2000).
Sydenham, E. The Coinage of the Roman Republic. (London, 1952).

Catalog current as of Monday, July 22, 2019.
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Roman Coins of Mark Antony