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Ancient Coin of the Day: A gander at some coins from Britain prior to the Claudian invasion of AD 43, in particular those of Cunobelinus, the origin of Shakespeare’s Cymbeline. #ACOTD #Numismatics #Britain 🧵

Image: British Museum (1977,0434.6). Link -… Image
Cunobelinus was a local British ruler who exerted control over a large area of south-east England, ca. AD 10-40, with a capital at Colchester. He claimed to be the son of Tasciovanus, who had ruled a kingdom centred to the north of the Thames.
The Obverse of this coin shows an ear of spelt, with the flanking Legend CA-MV, i.e. ‘Camulodunum’, Cunobelinus’ capital. Strabo (4.5.2) notes that grain is a major export of Britain, so the emblem could refer to Cunobelinus’ international trade. Image
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Ancient Coin of the Day: Today is about Didius Julianus, the man who bought the position of Emperor from the Praetorian Guard on this day, 28 March, in AD 193. #ACOTD #Numismatics #Rome 🧵

Image: RIC IV Didius Julianus 1; MoFA Boston (1999.514). Link -… ImageImage
Following their killing of Pertinax on 28 March AD 193, the Praetorian Guard decided to auction off the position of emperor to the highest bidder. Didius Julianus won the day, promising 25,000 sesterces per man (Dio 74.11.5), beginning his brief nine-week reign.
The Obverse of this coin shows a laureate portrait of Didius Julianus, with the Legend IMP CAES M DID IVLIAN AVG – ‘Emperor Caesar Marcus Didius Julianus Augustus’. Image
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Ancient Coin of the Day: As today marks the beginning of the end of his reign, a quick look at some of the coins of the Roman Emperor Macrinus! #ACOTD #Numismatics #Macrinus 🧵

Image: RIC IV Macrinus 50c; Münzkabinett Berlin (18277254). Link -…
Marcus Opellius Macrinus briefly reigned as Roman Emperor in AD 217-218, following the murder of his predecessor Caracalla. Indeed, Macrinus - the Praetorian Prefect - was alleged to have had been the instigator of the conspiracy against Caracalla.
He was also the first emperor not drawn from the senatorial class and, given the issues of his brief reign, never had the opportunity to visit Rome.
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Ancient Coin of the Day: Today’s an Othonian anniversary, so here's a quick look at the coins of M. Salvius Otho as he attempts to legitimise his rule as Roman emperor. #ACOTD #Roman #Otho 🧵

Image: RIC Otho 7; ANS 1944.100.39833. Link –…
By far Galba’s greatest failure was never to believe that others would seek to do what he had done, i.e. seize the imperial throne. In particular, he grossly underestimated the ambitions of his erstwhile ally, the governor of Lusitania, Marcus Salvius Otho.
Otho most likely ‘tied himself to Galba’s wagon’ from the belief that the elderly princeps (Galba was already 71 at the time of his troops declaring him emperor), who was also childless, would have to declare a successor.
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Ancient Coin of the Day: I’ve been remiss in coin threads this week, so let’s get back to it with this base-silver tetradrachm from Alexandria, ca. AD 66-67, one of a series celebrating Nero.

#ACOTD #Nero #Games

Image: RPC 5300/5. Link -
This is a great example of Julio-Claudian provincial coinage, part of a series of five base-silver tetradrachms that were issued by Alexandria to celebrate Nero's victories on the 'festival circuit' of Greek games.
The Legend that was universal to the series was ΝΕΡΩ ΚΛΑΥ ΚΑΙΣ ΣΕΒ ΓΕΡ ΑΥ - 'Nero Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus' - with the Legend on the Reverse being specific to each set of games, in this case ΠΟΣΕΙΔΩΝ ΙΣΘΜΙΟΣ – ‘Isthmian Poseidon’.
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Ancient Coin of the Day: The last few days have been a bit coin-light, so let’s get back to it with a look at some electrum issues of Thebes, starting with this hemidrachm ca. 360-340 BC. #ACOTD #Numismatics #Thebes

Image: ANS 1959.73.1. Link -…
These fabulous coins come from a series of electrum coins issued by Thebes which is in itself interesting given the lack of gold mines in Boeotian territory, entailing that the dating of these issues has come under recent scrutiny.
The Obverse of this series shows a bearded and ivy-wreathed Dionysus. Dionysus was said to have been born in Thebes, and then famously returned to that City where its king, Pentheus, refused to acknowledge Dionysus' god-head.
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Ancient Coin of the Day: Today we look at two coins from the opposing sides at the Battle of Pharsalus – starting with this denarius of Pompey the Great from 49 BC. #ACOTD #Roman #Pharsalus

Image: RRC 447/1a; British Museum (2002,0102.4425). Link -…
The commanders of the two opposing sides at the Battle of Pharsalus – Julius Caesar and Pompey the Great – both understood the importance of coinage in the run up to the battle, not only for filling their war chests but also as propaganda.
Thus at this time we see Caesar’s famous ‘Elephant Denarius’ – on which see this earlier #ACOTD thread from back in January. The two competing coinages highlight that both parties considered themselves ‘states’.

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Ancient Coin of the Day: Today’s thread is about Trajan’s building projects as commemorated on coins, starting with a sestertius of the Circus Maximus ca. AD 103-111. #ACOTD #Trajan #Buildings

Image: RIC 2 Trajan 571; Münzkabinett Wien (RÖ 8287). Link -… ImageImage
While he is perhaps better known for the military aspects of his reign, it cannot be disputed that Trajan was also keenly interested in building work and infrastructure, with many of his works commemorated on the coins that he issued.
The Obverse shows a laureate Trajan, with the detailed Legend IMP CAES NERVAE TRAIANO AVG GER DAC P M TR P COS V P P – ‘For Emperor Caesar Nerva Trajan Augustus, Germanicus, Dacicus, Pontifex Maximus, with Tribunician Power, Consul for the fifth time, Father of the Fatherland’. Image
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Ancient Coin of the Day: As today is quite the Neronian anniversary, let’s take a look at an interesting series of coins he issued, the Decursio sestertii of AD 62-68. #ACOTD #Nero #Decursio

Image: RIC Nero 170; Münzkabinett Berlin (18220881). Link -…
These coins form a novel and innovative series in the final years of Nero's reign and have provoked much discussion through their martial imagery, not least because they are very much at odds with the typical Neronian depictions.
Nero is not famed for his military coinage, being for more keen to advertise peace, such as on this aureus of AD 64-65 with a Reverse featuring the Temple of Janus.

Image: RIC Nero 50; British Museum (R.6525). Link -…
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Ancient Coin of the Day: Today we go niche with coins commemorating Diadumenian, the son of the short-reigning emperor Macrinus, from AD 217-218. #ACOTD #Diadumenian #Macrinus

Image: RIC IV Macrinus 101; Münzkabinett Berlin (18200735). Link -…
Macrinus, the Praetorian Prefect, was alleged to have had been the instigator of the conspiracy against Caracalla, but interestingly this tradition may have owed more to subsequent emperors, such as Elagabalus, who sought to blacken Macrinus' image for their own benefit.
Born 14 September 208, named Marcus Opellius Diadumenianus, the son of Macrinus was a potentially valuable dynastic tool for the new emperor with this coin suggesting early intentions in that regard.
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Ancient Coin of the Day: Heading east today, to take a quick gander at some of the gorgeous coins produced by the Arcasids of Parthia, starting with this silver drachm of Arcases I, ca. 220-215 BC. #ACOTD #Parthia #Arcasid

Image: ANS 1991.65.1. Link -… ImageImage
The Arsacids were the ruling dynasty of Parthia from the mid-3rd Century BC until AD 224, taking their name from their founder Arsaces, who conquered Parthia ca. 238 BC, following its secession from the Seleucid kingdom.
Although autonomous coins were rapidly issued by the new dynasty, they necessarily owe much to the existing Seleucid coins, but yet were keen to communicate an idiosyncratic identity in order to distinguish the Arcasids.
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Ancient Coin of the Day: A lovely Siculo-Punic silver tetradrachm, ca. 320-310 BC, showing a fusion of Sicilian and Carthaginian elements. #ACOTD #Sicily #Carthage

Image: ANS 1967.152.696. Link –…
The Obverse bears a portrait of the nymph Arethusa, surrounded by dolphins, in a scene that would be familiar from the Fifth Century BC coinage of Syracuse.
Indeed the image of Arethusa was one of the defining elements of Syracusan coin issues, as on this glorious dekadrachm from Syracuse, Sicily, ca. 470-460 BC.

Image: British Museum: 1841,0726.287. Link -…
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Ancient Coin of the Day: An absolutely gorgeous silver tetradrachm of Demetrius I of Bactria, ca. 2000-185 BC, with an utterly fantastic portrait bust of the man himself on the Obverse. #ACOTD #Bactria

Image: ANS 1997.9.67. Link -… ImageImage
The history of the kings of Bactria is quite confusing, primarily because our information about them is primarily derived from numismatic sources, which has necessarily caused some degree of debate about the period.
Around 245 BC, the satrap of Bactria, Diodotus I, broke from the Seleucids and established Bactria as an independent kingdom, issuing coins typical of Hellenistic monarchs, with an Obverse dominated by a diademed portrait.

Image: ANS 1980.109.108. Link –… ImageImage
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Ancient Coin of the Day: A couple of days early for his birthday, but here's a sestertius of Titus from AD 80-81 showing the Flavian Amphitheatre, also known as the Colosseum. #ACOTD #Titus

Image: RIC 2.1 Titus 184; British Museum (1844,0425.712). Link -… ImageImage
As Titus' reign was so brief, he "achieved little remarkable" (Dio 66.25.1), but one major event that did fall within the course of his reign was the dedication of the Flavian Amphitheatre.
The Reverse of this coin shows much of the detail of the building, including the statues and shields displayed in the arches of the Amphitheatre - as well as giving an impression of the host of Romans gathered within. One can also see the Meta Sudans in the left of the field. Image
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Ancient Coin of the Day: For his birthday, let's use today's thread to take a look at the coinage of Galba, starting with this lovely aureus of AD 68-69 from the mint at Tarraco. #ACOTD #Galba

Image: RIC Galba 40; British Museum (R.6573). Link -…
Although Galba's reign was brief, he at least demonstrated that he understood the power of numismatic messaging. Thus his coinage was well-crafted with powerful messages of righting Rome and putting the empire back on track.
The Obverse of this coin shows a rather severe laureate portrait of Galba with the simple Legend GALBA IMPERATOR - 'Galba, Victorious Commander'. The simple nomenclature here is often cited as evidence that this coin was issued prior to his formal acclamation by the Senate.
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Ancient Coin of the Day: Just got Hercules on my mind today, so the thread is going to look at the connection which Commodus forged with Hercules, starting with this aureus of AD 190. #ACOTD #Commodus #Hercules

Image: RIC III Commodus 221d. Link -…
The connection between the Emperor and the gods was one that had a long history, with Augustus being worshipped at Narbonne alongside the goddess Roma, but few emperors went as far as Commodus in explicitly associating themselves with a particular deity.
Dio (73.15.6) tells us that during Commodus' reign "vast numbers of statues were erected representing him in the garb of Hercules. And it was voted that his age should be named the 'Golden Age', and that this should be recorded in all the records without exception."
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Ancient Coin of the Day: A Flavian kick today, in particular the association that Domitian fostered between himself and the goddess Minerva, starting with this aureus of AD 82. #ACOTD #Domitian

Image: RIC 2.1 Domitian 138; British Museum (R.10756). Link -…
Domitian's association with Minerva is well known, with Dio (67.1.2) noting almost immediately that "of the gods, it was Athena (Minerva) that he most honoured". Indeed, Philostratos (Life of Apollonius of Tyre 7.24) goes so far as to note that Domitian suggested that he was...
...the son of Athena. Similarly, Martial (Epigram 14.179 - published ca AD 84/5) speaks of the fact that both Minerva and Domitian sport an aegis - the Gorgon's head - on their armour. As a goddess of wisdom and warfare, Minerva was a fine choice for a close affinity.
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Ancient Coin of the Day: A denarius of ca. 19-4 BC commemorating the Augustan recovery of the legionary standards from the Parthians. #ACOTD #Augustus

Image: RIC Augustus 287; British Museum (2002,0102.4941). Link -… Image
The loss of three Roman legionary standards under Crassus at the battle of Carrhae on 9 June in 53 BC - to say nothing of the failure of Mark Antony's Parthian Expedition in 36 BC - had long been a source of embarrassment to Roman martial reputation.
Augustus' successful diplomatic recovery of the standards in 20 BC did much to restore Roman 'dignity'. Thus unsurprisingly it was an event that featured prominently on the coinage of the period, including this denarius of Publius Petronius Turpilianus.
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Ancient Coin of the Day: a quick one today, but as I've been a little lax with them of late, I feel the need. So, here's a lovely example of an early Roman denarius, ca. 211 BC. #ACOTD #Roman

Image: RRC 53/2; ANS 1937.158.571. Link -… ImageImage
Rome's introduction of its denarius coinage has been (an continues to be in some quarters) a topic of much debate, although the extensive study of Rudi Thomsen (1957-1961: 'Early Roman Coinage - A Study of the Chronology'; 3 vols.) was, in my opinion, definitive in...
establishing 211 BC as the 'terminus ante quem' for the introduction of the denarius. Originally issued at a value of 10 asses, carrying over the system of denominational marks from the pre-existing 'aes grave' monetary system.
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Ancient Coin of the Day: A bloody gorgeous aureus of AD 55, with an Obverse depicting the jugate busts of Nero and Agrippina the Younger.#ACOTD #Nero

Image: RIC Nero 6
The Obverse here places Nero in the ascendancy, with the Legend - NERO CLAVD DIVI F CAES AVG GERM IMP TR P COS - stressing his connection to Claudius and appending the raft of imperial titles and powers, including his Tribunician Power and his holding of the consulship.
The Reverse's Legend - AGRIPP AVG DIVI CLAVD NERONIS CAES MATER EX S C - is entirely that of Agrippina: 'Agrippina Augusta, wife of the Deified Claudius, mother of Nero Caesar: by decree of the Senate'. The central design is that of an elephant-drawn quadriga...
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Ancient Coin of the Day: A cracking example of Persian satrapal coinage - a silver stater minted by the satrap Tiribazus, ca. 387-380 BC. #ACOTD #Persia

Image: British Museum (GC21 (BMC Greek (Lycaonia)) (164) (12))
Tiribazus produced coins of this design at four mints, Mallos, Issos, Tarsus, and Soli, though issues from the first two are the more common. The Obverse shows Ahuramazda holding a flower (perhaps a lotus) in the right hand, a wreath in the left.
The Reverse shows a standing male divinity, who has been interpreted as being either Baal or Zeus, the iconography being similar between the two, although a standing Baal figure is again less common.
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Ancient Coin of the Day: A really lovely example of a silver tetradrachm minted by the Koinon of Athena Ilias in the Troad, ca. 188-133 BC. A remarkable form of coinage that was centred around a shared festival of Athena. #ACOTD

Image: ANS 1945.33.5
Long considered to be a civic coinage of Ilium (ΙΛΙΕΩΝ), this form of coinage is now understood to be the 'festival coinage' of the confederation that administrated an annual Panathenaia festival in honour of Athena Ilias.
This accounts for why the usual civic indicator is absent from the coinage, and Athena herself is given such prominence., with the name of the chair of the board of agonothetes ('festival organisers') featuring on the Reverse.

Image: ANS 1967.152.422
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Ancient Coin of the Day: A monster of a coin today, in sheer size at least - a bronze octobol of Ptolemy III Euergetes, ca. 246-222 BC, weighing in at 95.79g. #ACOTD

Image: ANS 1944.100.75945
Ptolemy III emphasised the production of this coin, with an Obverse showing the horned head of Zeus Ammon, with the Reverse design being an eagle clutching thunderbolts in its talons.
The coin of Ptolemy III are renowned for their lavishness, either in sheer size such as the octobol, or in the denomination - such as this silver pentadrachm with the bust of Berenice II, his wife and co-ruler.

Image: ANS 1967.152.626
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Ancient Coin of the Day: A silver denarius of Nero, from AD 55. The Obverse is decorated with jugate busts of Nero and his mother, Agrippina. #ACOTD #Nero

Image: RIC Nero 7
The Obverse Legend, NERO CLAVD DIVI F CAES AVG GERM IMP TR P COS - 'Nero Caesar Augustus Germanicus son of Divine Claudius, hailed victorious commander, with Tribunician power, Consul, is a raft of imperial titles and official positions designed to impart legitimacy to Nero.
The use of the busts of both Nero and his mother appeared on his early coinage, with a particularly famous example being this aureus of AD 54, notable for the same Legend as our denarius, though without the title of Consul, a position he did not assume until AD 55.
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