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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Gods, Non-Olympian ▸ JanusView Options:  |  |  | 

Janus

Janus was the Roman god of gates, doors, doorways, time, beginnings, and endings. He is depicted with two faces in opposite directions; one looks back into the past, while the other simultaneously looks forward into the future. He is the namesake of the month January.


Tenedos, Islands off Troas, c. 550 - 470 B.C.

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Philonome, the second wife of King Cycnus of Colonae, falsely accused her stepson Tenes of rape, using the flutist Eumolpus as witness. Cycnus believed the accusation and tried to kill Tenes and his sister Hemithea by placing them both in a chest, which was set into the ocean. However, the chest landed on the island of Leucophrye, where they made Tenes their king and renamed the island Tenedos. Cycnus later learned the truth, killed Eumolpus, and buried Philonome alive. When Cycnus' ship landed at Tenedos in hopes of reconciliation, Tenes rebuffed him and cut the mooring with a labrys. Tenes fought for the Trojans in the Trojan War and was slain by Achilles. After the war, Agamemnon permitted the Trojan prisoners to build a city north of Mycenea. The city was called Tenea and they founded a sanctuary where sacrifices were offered to Tenes. No flute player was allowed to enter the sacred precinct, and the name of Achilles was not to be uttered. Map of Troas
GS83935. Silver obol, SNG Cop 509; SNGvA 1587; SNG Mnchen 340; SNG Tbingen 2677; BMC Troas p. 91, 7; Rosen 536; Weber 5448, HGC 6 381; SGCV II 5151, VF, tight flan, uneven toning, edge crack, weight 0.584 g, maximum diameter 8.3 mm, Tenedos (Bozcaada, Turkey) mint, c. 550 - 470 B.C.; obverse janiform head of a diademed female left and laureate bearded male right; reverse labrys (double axe), T-E divided by handle, all within an incuse square, no linear border; ex Wilson H Guertin; $100.00 (85.00)


Roman Republic, L. Saufeius, 152 B.C.

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In Roman mythology, Janus (or Ianus) was the god of gates, doors, doorways, and of beginnings and endings. Janus is one of the few major deities in Roman mythology that does not have a Greek origin or counterpart.
RR68445. Bronze as, SRCV I 720, Crawford 204/2, Sydenham 385, BMCRR Rome 836, aF, weight 23.522 g, maximum diameter 31.4 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 152 B.C.; obverse laureate and bearded head of Janus, I (mark of value) above; reverse prow right, crescent over LSAVF (VF ligate) above, I (mark of value) right, ROMA below; $45.00 (38.25)


Roman Republic, Pre-Denarius Coinage, 225 - 215 B.C.

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Crawford describes obverse as the laureate janiform head of the Dioscuri and explains, "the Dioscuri had acquired the role of protectors of the Roman people as a result of their intervention on the Roman side at the Battle of Lake Regillus. Explaining the reverse, he states, "Jupiter was the god in whose honour a Roman triumph was held." The depiction is probably based on the statue of Jupiter in a quadriga erected on the ridge of the Capitoline Temple in 296 B.C.
SH76566. Silver quadrigatus, Crawford 28/3, Sydenham 64, RSC I 23, SRCV I 31, Choice gVF, attractive style, well struck, light rose toning, traces of mint luster, small die crack on chin, minor flan flaws and contact marks, weight 6.800 g, maximum diameter 22.5 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 225 - 215 B.C.; obverse laureate beardless head of Janus, curved neck truncation; reverse Jupiter in fast quadriga right, driven by Victory with reins in both hands, Jupiter hurling thunderbolt in his right, transverse lotus tipped scepter in his left, incuse ROMA on raised rectangular tablet below; SOLD







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Catalog current as of Wednesday, November 21, 2018.
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Janus