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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Military ▸ Arms and ArmorView Options:  |  |  |   

Ancient Coins Featuring Arms and Armor

Julius Caesar, Imperator and Dictator, October 49 - 15 March 44 B.C.

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The Roman numeral on the obverse indicates Caesar's age (52) when this coin was minted, a unique occurrence in Roman numismatics.
SH85105. Silver denarius, SRCV I 1400, BMCRR Rome 3955, RSC I 18, Crawford 452/2, Sydenham 1009, Sear CRI 11, EF, light tone on luster, tiny edge cracks, weight 3.716 g, maximum diameter 19.3 mm, die axis 90o, traveling military mint, late spring-early summer 48 B.C.; obverse female (Clementia?) head right, wearing oak wreath, necklace, jewel before ear, and cruciform earring, hair in jeweled knot behind with falling locks, LII (52 = Caesar's age) behind; reverse CAE-SAR flanking the base of a draped trophy of Gallic arms (shield decorated with fulmen, horned helmet, and carnyx), axe topped by wolf head on right; $1350.00 (1201.50)


Augustus, 16 January 27 B.C. - 19 August 14 A.D.

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A legatus Augusti pro praetore (literally: "envoy of the emperor - acting praetor") was the official title of the governor of some imperial provinces of the Roman Empire during the Principate era, normally the larger ones or those where legions were based. Provinces were denoted imperial if their governor was selected by the emperor, in contrast to senatorial provinces, whose governors (called proconsuls) were elected by the Roman Senate.
SH84735. Silver denarius, RIC I 7b, RSC I 405, BMCRE I 282, BMCRR Spain 115, BnF I 1048, Hunter I -, SRCV I -, Nice gVF, attractive portrait, bold strike, light toning with luster in recesses, area of corrosion on reverse edge 3:00 - 6:00, weight 3.758 g, maximum diameter 18.9 mm, die axis 315o, Emerita Augusta (Merida, Spain) mint, P. Carisius, c. 25 - 23 B.C.; obverse IMP CAESAR AVGVST, bare head left; reverse P CARISIVS LEG PRO PR (P. Carisius Legatus [Augusti] pro Praetore), Celtiberian helmet decorated with face and crest, short dagger pointing downward on left, bipennis (double-headed ax) slanting upward on right; this is the only example of this scarce type ever handled by Forum, from the Marcelo Leal Collection; scarce; $1300.00 (1157.00)


Probus, Summer 276 - September 282 A.D.

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Adventus reverse types commemorate the emperor's arrival at Rome, either at the commencement of his reign or on his return from a distance. They may also refer to his arrival in some other city or province of the empire. At their accession, emperors were not conveyed in a chariot nor in any other vehicle, but went on horseback or on foot when they made their first public entry into the capital of the Roman world.
RA76334. Billon antoninianus, RIC V, part 2, 904 (S); Cohen VI 69; Pink VI-1, p. 43; Hunter IV 311 var. (1st officina); cf. SRCV III 11195 (Rome mint, etc.), gVF, green patina with some silvering remaining, weight 4.393 g, maximum diameter 23.0 mm, 2nd officina, Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint, 2nd emission, end 276 - beginning 277 A.D.; obverse VIRTVS PROBI AVG (the valor of Emperor Probus), radiate, helmeted, and cuirassed bust left, spear in right hand over right shoulder, oval shield decorated with charging horseman on left arm; reverse ADVENTVS PROBI AVG (the arrival of Emperor Probus), Probus on horseback left, raising right hand in salute, long scepter in left hand, horses' right foreleg raised over bound captive seated left, B in exergue; scarce; $280.00 (249.20)


Probus, Summer 276 - September 282 A.D.

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In 278, Probus defeated the Alamanni, expelled the Franks from Gaul, reorganized the defenses on the Rhine, resettled the Germanic tribes in the devastated provinces of the Roman Empire, and adopted the titles of Gothicus Maximus and Germanicus Maximus.
RA76279. Silvered antoninianus, Pink VI-1, p. 63; RIC, part 2, V 376 (S) var. (cuirass); Cohen VI 283 var. (same); Hunter IV 131 var. (same, and obv legend); SRCV III 11984 (same), Choice aEF, some mint luster, most silvering remains, fantastic heroic bust, light corrosion, weight 3.341 g, maximum diameter 22.8 mm, die axis 0o, 5th officina, Ticinum (Pavia, Italy) mint, 4 emission, 278 A.D.; obverse VIRTVS PROBI AVG (the valor of Emperor Probus), radiate bust left from behind, spear left in right hand, back bare but for balteus over right shoulder and rectangular Aegis shield with square corner in on left shoulder; reverse HERCVLI PACIF (to Hercules the pacifier), Hercules standing left, raising branch in extended right, club and Nemean Lion skin in left, VXXT in exergue; very rare; $260.00 (231.40)


Termessos Major, Pisidia, c. 238 - 268 A.D.

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Alexander the Great likened Termessos, high in the Taurus Mountains, to an eagle's nest after he surrounded it but failed to conquer it in 333 B.C. An ally of Rome, Termessos was granted independent status by the Roman Senate in 71 B.C. Independence was maintained continuously for a long time, the only exception being an alliance with Amyntas king of Galatia (reigned 36-25 BC). This independence is documented also by the coins of Termessos, which bear the title "Autonomous." Termessos was abandoned after its aqueduct was destroyed by an earthquake (date unknown).
GB83542. Bronze AE 38, SNGvA 5364; BMC Lycia p. 273, 41; SNG BnF -; SNG Cop -; SNG PfPs -; SNG Righetti -, aVF, green patina, rough, pitting, corrosion, smoothing, edge chip, centration dimples, weight 28.152 g, maximum diameter 37.8 mm, die axis 0o, Termessos Major mint, pseudo-autonomous, c. 238 - 268 A.D.; obverse TEPMHCCEΩN AVTONOMΩN, laureate and bearded head of Zeus right; reverse TΩN MEIZONΩN, Athena standing slightly left, head left, wearing helmet, long chiton, and peplos, holding Nike offering wreath in right hand, spear in left hand, shield at feet on far side of right leg, trophy of captured arms behind, Θ left; about twice the weight of the similar smaller and less rare coin with the same types (SNG BnF 2189, AE33, 14.06g); very rare; $240.00 (213.60)


Thebes, Boeotia, Greece, c. 480 - 456 B.C.

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The largest city in Boeotia, leader of the Boeotian confederacy, and rival of Athens, Thebes sided with Persia during Xerxes' invasion in 480 B.C. Thebes ended Sparta's power at the Battle of Leuctra in 371. The Sacred Band of Thebes famously fell to Philip II at Chaeronea in 338. After a revolt in 335, Alexander the Great destroyed the city, except, according to tradition, the house of the poet Pindar.
GS85055. Silver stater, SNG Cop 261, BMC Central p. 69, 19, aVF, toned, weight 5.598 g, maximum diameter 17.3 mm, Thebes mint, 379 - 338 B.C.; obverse Boiotian shield; reverse amphora within incuse square; ex Forum 2012; rare; $225.00 (200.25)


Lucius Verus, 7 March 161 - February 169 A.D.

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In 166, Marcus Aurelius appointed his sons as caesars, while he and Lucius Verus traveled to Germany.
RB83531. Bronze as, RIC III MA1448 (S), Cohen III 282, BMCRE IV 1307, Szaivert MIR 18 129, SRCV II 5416, VF, well centered, nice green patina, marks and scratches, some light corrosion, weight 8.821 g, maximum diameter 25.8 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, Dec 165 - summer 166 A.D.; obverse L VERVS AVG ARM PARTH MAX, laureate head right; reverse TR POT VI IMP IIII COS II, Victory standing facing, head left, crowning a trophy of arms with right hand, palm frond in left hand, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking low across field; scarce; $225.00 (200.25)


Aitna, Sicily, The Kampanoi Mercenaries, c. 354 - 344 B.C.

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In 475 B.C. Hieron moved ten thousand settlers from Syracuse and Peloponnesus to Katane and renamed it Aetna. In 461, after Hieron's death, the new settlers were expelled. They moved to the southern slope of the volcano and founded a new Aetna. In 403 B.C., Dionysius the Elder made himself master of Aetna, where he settled his discharged Campanian mercenaries, the Kampanoi. The Kampanoi retained possession of Aitna until 339 B.C., when Timoleon took the city and put them to the sword. Under Rome, Aitna became a municipal town of considerable importance; its territory being one of the most fertile of all Sicily. The site of the city and time of its destruction are unknown today.
GI76936. Bronze AE 14, Calciati III, p. 327, 2; HGC 2 1608 (R1, Tauromenion); SNG Morcom 877 (340 - 330 B.C.); BMC Sicily p. 237, 4; SNG ANS -; SNG Cop -; SNG Munchen -, VF, green patina, smoothing, weight 2.744 g, maximum diameter 14.4 mm, die axis 60o, Aitna (or Tauromenion?) mint, c. 354 - 344 B.C.; obverse Phrygian helmet with cheek guards, ornamented with a griffin, linear border; reverse KAM (Kampanoi) monogram in olive wreath; $195.00 (173.55)


Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D.

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Roma was a female deity who personified the city of Rome and more broadly, the Roman state. The earliest certain cult to dea Roma was established at Smyrna in 195 B.C., probably to mark the successful alliance against Antiochus III. In 30/29 B.C., the Koinon of Asia and Bithynia requested permission to honor Augustus as a living god. "Republican" Rome despised the worship of a living man, but an outright refusal might offend their loyal allies. A cautious formula was drawn up, non-Romans could only establish a cult for divus Augustus jointly with dea Roma. In the city of Rome itself, the earliest known state cult to dea Roma was combined with Venus at the Hadrianic Temple of Venus and Roma. This was the largest temple in the city, probably dedicated to inaugurate the reformed festival of Parilia, which was known thereafter as the Romaea after the Eastern festival in Roma's honor. The temple contained the seated, Hellenised image of dea Roma with a Palladium in her right hand to symbolize Rome's eternity.
SL84528. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC III 1037, BMCRE IV 1420, Hunter II 169, Cohen III 284, MIR 18 233, SRCV II 4977, ANACS VF30 (4625585), Rome mint, Dec 171 - Dec 172 A.D.; obverse M ANTONINVS - AVG TR P XXVI, laureate head right; reverse IMP VI COS III (imperator 6 times, consul 3 times), Roma seated left on cuirass, helmeted and draped, transverse spear on far side in right hand, resting her left forearm on round shield stacked upon an oval shield and a hexagonal shield, S C (senatus consulto) flanking across fields; from the Dr. Sam Mansourati Collection, certified (slabbed) by ANACS; $195.00 (173.55)


Probus, Summer 276 - September 282 A.D., EQVITI Series II of Ticinum, Q, SXXI

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Ticinum mint EQVITI series II - click EQVITI to read the NumisWiki article, Coins of Probus with Coded Markings of EQVITI Embedded in the mint mark. The letter Q in the reverse field is the second letter of the codeword EQVITI. The letter S in the exergue indicates this coin was struck by the second officina (mint workshop). The letters of the word EQVITI are coded in the mint marks of coins from all the officinae of the mint, with the specific letters of the codeword assigned to each officina in order corresponding with their officina numbers. This codeword probably refers to cavalry. It may be AEQVITI truncated because there were only six officinae in operation.
RA77126. Billon antoninianus, Cohen VI 488 (also with helmet); RIC V, part 2, 492 (R); Pink VI-1, p. 67/9; Hunter IV -, SRCV III -, Choice gVF, well centered and struck, much silvering, unusual obverse legend, weight 3.366 g, maximum diameter 22.9 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Ticinum (Pavia, Italy) mint, emission 9, 281 A.D.; obverse VIRTVS PROBI INVICTI AVG, radiate, helmeted and cuirassed bust left, spear in right hand over right shoulder, shield on left arm; reverse PROVIDENT AVG (the foresight of the Emperor), Providentia standing left holding globe in right hand, long transverse scepter in left hand, Q in left field, SXXI in exergue; rare; $170.00 (151.30)




  



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