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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Roman Coins ▸ The Twelve Caesars ▸ ClaudiusView Options:  |  |  |   

Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D.

Claudius was one of the most capable, yet unlikely emperors. Shunned as an idiot by his family due to a limp and embarrassing stutter, Claudius spent the first decades of his life absorbed in scholarly studies until the death of his nephew Caligula. After Caligula's murder, the Praetorian Guard found him hiding behind a curtain in the Imperial Palace, expecting to be murdered. Instead, the guard proclaimed him emperor. His reign was marred by personal catastrophes, most notably promiscuity and betrayal by his first wife. He governed well and conquered the troublesome island of Britain. He was poisoned by his second wife, Agrippina Jr., mother of Nero.


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R. F. Kenyon in "The countermark PROB on coins of Claudius from Britain" (NC 148, 1988) writes that the PROB countermark, which was applied only to sestertii of Claudius, can be expanded to PROBatum, meaning "approved." The Claudian sestertii bearing this countermark are found almost exclusively in Britain and Italy. His study did not find shared punches between any coins with known provenances from Britain and Italy, suggesting that the Claudian sestertii circulating in Britain were countermarked there. The countermarks were carefully applied, always in the right obverse field and never overlapping the imperial portrait. Coins were countermarked before they had seen much, if any, circulation.
SH85461. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I 99; BMCRE I 124; SRCV I 1853; Cohen I 85; c/m: Kenyon 1 - 7 (same coin type, same placement), Pangerl 23 (Gallia), Martini 40, Choice VF, c/m: EF; Tiber toning, bumps and scratches, light corrosion, reverse double struck, weight 25.951 g, maximum diameter 36.4 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 42 A.D.; obverse TI CLAVDIVS CAESAR AVG P M TR P IMP, laureate head right, countermark: PROB in a rectangular punch; reverse SPES AVGVSTA, Spes walking left, flower in right hand, raising skirt with left hand, S C (senatus consulto) in exergue; rare countermark; $900.00 (€801.00) ON RESERVE


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

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Antonia was the daughter of Marc Antony and Octavia, the wife of Nero Drusus, the mother of Claudius, and a grandmother of Caligula. Renowned for her beauty and virtue, Antonia was revered by the Roman people. She was probably poisoned by Caligula or committed suicide. She never loved her son Claudius, calling him a monster and a fool, but he posthumously made her Augusta in 41 A.D. and issued all her coinage.
SH68887. Silver denarius, RIC I Claudius 66, BMCRE I Claudius 111, Cohen 2, SRCV I 1900, F, toned, weight 3.717 g, maximum diameter 18.9 mm, die axis 225o, Rome mint, struck under Claudius, c. 41 - 42 A.D.; obverse ANTONIA AVGVSTA, draped bust right, wearing barley wreath; reverse CONSTANTIAE AVGVSTI (consistency of the emperor), Antonia standing facing, draped as Constantia, long torch in right, cornucopia in left; from the Jyrki Muona Collection; rare (R2); $880.00 (€783.20)
 


Claudius, Messalina and Britannicus, 43 - 49 A.D., Tralleis (as Caesarea), Lydia

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On the slopes of Mount Messogis in the valley of the Meander, Tralles, was one of the largest and richest cities of Lydia. King Attalus had a splendid palace there. The local god was Zeus Larasios, but Apollo Pythius and other divinities were also worshiped. On the defeat of Antiochus, 190 B.C., Tralles, with the rest of Lydia, was assigned to the kingdom of the Attalids, under whose gentle sway it enjoyed peace and prosperity, and was one of the chief mints of the Cistophori. When Attalus III died without an heir in 133 B.C., he bequeathed the whole of Pergamon to Rome in order to prevent a civil war. Tralles was destroyed by an earthquake but was rebuilt by Augustus and took the name of Caesarea.
RP84886. Bronze AE 18, RPC I 2654; SNG Cop 691; SNG Munchen 740; SNG Righetti 1107; BMC Lydia p. 345, 124; Waddington 5423; Lindgren III 535; SNGvA -, gF, toned coppery surfaces, tight flan cutting off much of the legends, porous, weight 5.559 g, maximum diameter 17.9 mm, die axis 0o, Tralles (Aydýn, Turkey) mint, 43 - 49 A.D.; obverse TI KLAY KAI CEBAC, confronting heads of Messalina and Claudius, Claudius laureate; reverse KAIΣAPEΩN BPETANNIKOΣ, togate figure of Britannicus standing slightly left, head left, holding ears of grain in right hand; $225.00 (€200.25)
 


Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D., Aezanis, Phrygia

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A brockage occurs when a blank is struck with a previously struck coin which adhered to the opposite die. Click here to read a detailed explanation.
ME85351. Bronze AE 20, cf. RPC I 3098, VF, weight 6.622 g, maximum diameter 20.4 mm, Aizanis (Cavdarhisar, Turkey) mint, obverse KΛAY∆IOΣ KAIΣAP, laureate head right; reverse incuse of obverse; $200.00 (€178.00)
 


Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt

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Coins with these types were struck by the Alexandria mint in Claudius' year 2 with weights ranging from under 4 grams to over 12 grams. They may have been issued with the denominations diobol, obol, dichalkon, and chalkon. It is often difficult to know which denomination was intended and the references seem to share our confusion.
RX84561. Bronze obol, RPC I 5124, Dattari 164, BMC Alexandria 96, Kampmann-Ganschow 12.10, Milne 71, SNG Milan 628, Emmett 91, VF, green patina, slightly rough areas, weight 5.335 g, maximum diameter 20.7 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Sep 41 - 28 Sep 42 A.D.; obverse TI KΛAY KAI CE ΓEPMA (or similar), laureate head right, star below chin; reverse AYTOKPA, hippopotamus standing right, LB (year 2) in exergue; ex Agora auction 52, lot 113; rare; $160.00 (€142.40)
 


Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D., Aizanis, Phrygia

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Aizanis (Aezani, Aizanoi) was an important political and economic center in Roman times. Surviving remains from the period include a well-preserved Temple of Zeus, an unusual combined theater-stadium complex, and a macellum inscribed with the Price Edict of Diocletian.
RP84892. Bronze AE 20, RPC I 3088; BMC Phrygia p. 34, 85; SNG Cop 83; vA Aizanoi 40; McClean 8744; Lindgren-Kovacs 872, VF, dark patina with buff earthen deposits, tight flan, reverse slightly off center, weight 4.082 g, maximum diameter 19.5 mm, die axis 0o, Aizanis (Cavdarhisar, Turkey) mint, magistrate Klaudios Hierax; obverse AIZANITAI − KΛAY∆ION KAICKAPA, laureate head right; reverse EΠI KΛAY∆I−OY − IEPAKOC, Zeus of Aezanis standing facing, head left, eagle in extended right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand; ex Roma Numismatics e-sale 28 (2 Jul 2016), lot 252; $150.00 (€133.50)
 


Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D., Uncertain Caesarea, Syria

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RPC attributes this rare type to an uncertain mint named Caesarea. See RPC I p. 599 for a discussion of its attribution.
RP83686. Bronze AE 20, RPC I 4084; SNG Cop 177 (Caesarea in Cappadocia); BMC Lycaonia p. 32, 5 (Anazarbus, Cilicia), VF, well centered, nice portrait, attractive olive green patina, light marks and scratches, weight 4.58 g, maximum diameter 20.3 mm, die axis 0o, uncertain Caesarea mint, 25 Jan 41 - 13 Oct 54 A.D.; obverse KΛAY∆IOC KAICAP, laureate head right; reverse ETOYC KAICAPEΩN Γ (year 3), turreted, veiled and draped bust of Tyche right; rare; $145.00 (€129.05)
 


Philippi, Macedonia, 41 - 68 A.D.

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This coin has traditionally been attributed to Augustus, but due to its copper composition, RPC attributes it as likely from Claudius to Nero; Philippi probably did not issue copper coins during the reign of Augustus.
RP84961. Bronze AE 20, RPC I 1651, Varbanov III 3229, SGICV 32, SNG Cop 305, AMNG III 14, BMC Macedonia 23, VF, dark patina, some light corrosion, weight 5.683 g, maximum diameter 20.4 mm, die axis 0o, Philippi mint, 41 - 68 A.D.; obverse Victory standing left on base, raising wreath in right hand, palm frond in left hand over left shoulder, VIC - AVG divided across field; reverse COHOR PRAE PHIL, three standards; $140.00 (€124.60)
 


Claudius, Messalina and Britannicus, 43 - 49 A.D., Tralleis (as Caesarea), Lydia

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On the slopes of Mount Messogis in the valley of the Meander, Tralles, was one of the largest and richest cities of Lydia. King Attalus had a splendid palace there. The local god was Zeus Larasios, but Apollo Pythius and other divinities were also worshiped. On the defeat of Antiochus, 190 B.C., Tralles, with the rest of Lydia, was assigned to the kingdom of the Attalids, under whose gentle sway it enjoyed peace and prosperity, and was one of the chief mints of the Cistophori. When Attalus III died without an heir in 133 B.C., he bequeathed the whole of Pergamon to Rome in order to prevent a civil war. Tralles was destroyed by an earthquake but was rebuilt by Augustus and took the name of Caesarea.
RP84552. Bronze AE 20, RPC I 2654; SNG Cop 691; SNG Munchen 740; SNG Righetti 1107; BMC Lydia p. 345, 124; Waddington 5423; Lindgren III 535; SNGvA -, aF, green patina, weight 3.806 g, maximum diameter 19.6 mm, die axis 0o, Tralles (Aydýn, Turkey) mint, 43 - 49 A.D.; obverse TI KLAY KAI CEBAC, confronting heads of Messalina and Claudius, Claudius laureate; reverse KAIΣAPEΩN BPETANNIKOΣ, togate figure of Britannicus standing slightly left, head left, holding ears of grain in right hand; $135.00 (€120.15)
 


Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D., Ilium, Troas, Divus Augustus Reverse

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Ilium was previously named Troy. The countermark, presumably the gorgoneion on the breastplate of Athena Illias, is known on coins from Galba, Nero and Agrippina, Claudius, Gaius, and also on civic issues.
CM85344. Bronze AE 25, RPC I 2313 (10 spec., this countermark noted); BMC Troas p. 62, 38; SNGvA 153; Bellinger Troy 121; SNG Cop -; c/m: Howgego 193, aF, countermark VF, nice green patina, some porosity, weight 8.458 g, maximum diameter 25.0 mm, die axis 180o, Ilium mint, 25 Jan 41 - 13 Oct 54 A.D.; obverse TI KΛAY∆IOC KAICAP, bare head of Claudius right; reverse ΘEOC AYTOKPATΩP, radiate head of divus Augustus right, IΛI lower right horizontal before neck, statue of Athena Illias standing on base to right; countermark: gorgoneion in 7mm round punch; very rare; $135.00 (€120.15)
 




  



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OBVERSE LEGENDS

DIVVSCLAVDIVSAVGVSTVS
TICLAVDCAES
TICLAVDCAESAVG
TICLAVDCAESARAVGGERPMTRP
TICLAVDCAESARAVGGERMPMTRP
TICLAVDCAESARAVGPMTRPIII
TICLAVDCAESARAVGPMTRPIIII
TICLAVDCAESARAVGPMTRPVIIMPXI
TICLAVDCAESARAVGPMTRPVIIIIMPXVI
TICLAVDCAESARAVGPMTRPVIIIIIMPXVI
TICLAVDCAESARAVGPMTRPVIIIIIMPXVII
TICLAVDCAESARAVGPMTRPVIIIIIMPXVIII
TICLAVDCAESARAVGPMTRPXPP
TICLAVDCAESARAVGPMTRPXIMPPP
TICLAVDCAESARAVGPMTRPXPPIMPXVIII
TICLAVDCAESARAVGPMTRPXIIMPPPCOSV
TICLAVDCAESARAVGPMTRPXIPPIMPXVIII
TICLAVDIVSCAESARAVG
TICLAVDIVSCAESARAVGPMTRPIMP
TICLAVDIVSCAESARAVGPMTRPIMPPP
TICLAVDCAESARAVGGERMPMTRIBPOTPP (WITH AGRIPPINA JUNIOR)


REFERENCES

American Numismatic Society (ANS) Collections Database Online - http://numismatics.org/search/search
Banti, A. & L. Simonetti. Corpus Nummorum Romanorum. (Florence, 1972-1979).
Burnett, A., M. Amandry & P.P. Ripollès. Roman Provincial Coinage I: From the death of Caesar to the death of Vitellius (44 BC-AD 69). (London, 1992 and supplement).
Calicó, X. The Roman Avrei, Vol. One: From the Republic to Pertinax, 196 BC - 193 AD. (Barcelona, 2003).
Calicó, X. The Roman Avrei, Vol. One: From the Republic to Pertinax, 196 BC - 193 AD. (Barcelona, 2003).
Cayón, J. Los Sestercios del Imperio Romano, Vol. I: De Pompeyo Magno a Matidia (Del 81 a.C. al 117 d.C.). (Madrid, 1984).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappées sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 1: Pompey to Domitian. (Paris, 1880).
Giard, J-B. Monnaies de L'Empire Romain II: De Tebère à Néron. Catalogue Bibliothèque nationale de France. (Paris, 1988).
Mattingly, H. & R.A.G. Carson. Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum, Vol 1: Augustus to Vitellius. (London, 1923).
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, University of Glasgow, Vol. I. Augustus to Nerva. (Oxford, 1962).
Sear, D.R. Roman Coins and Their Values, The Millennium Edition, Volume One, The Republic and the Twelve Caesars 280 BC - AD 86. (London, 2000).
Sutherland, C.H.V. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. I, From 39 BC to AD 69. (London, 1984).
Toynbee, J.M.C. Roman medallions. ANSNS 5. (New York, 1944).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).
von Kaenel, H-M. Münzprägung und Münzbildnis des Claudius. AMUGS XI. (Berlin, 1986).

Catalog current as of Thursday, July 27, 2017.
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Roman Coins of Claudius