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EXERGUE, or EXERGUM- the lowest part of a coin, divided from the rest by a horizontal line. The word signifies an outwork in relation to the type and to the legend.
It is usually found on the reverse; seldom on the side of the head and the words or letters form a straight line, while the rest of the legend is placed circularly.
In coins of Roman Republic and Early Empire, the exergual inscriptions mark either Consular dates, or Senatorial authority (S C), or more frequently, what is of more importance, it directly applies to the subject typified on the reverse.
In the mintages of the late Roman and Byzantine periods, letters generally occupy the exergue which generally serve to indicate the cities in which they were struck.
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