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Old 02-09-2010, 12:06 PM
nhochrein nhochrein is offline
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Default Roman Coinage

Are there any roman emperors who didn't issue coins? Are there any who only issued a few (like ones that would only be in places like the Smithsonian)? Are there any emperors that any coin from that emperor is rare?
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nhochrein
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Old 02-09-2010, 06:11 PM
ethnucoins ethnucoins is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nhochrein
Are there any roman emperors who didn't issue coins? Are there any who only issued a few (like ones that would only be in places like the Smithsonian)? Are there any emperors that any coin from that emperor is rare?
Thanks!
nhochrein

Offhand, I can't think of any emperors who issued no coins - getting ones name and portrait
on the coinage seems to have been an important way of gaining recognition so even
emperors who lasted only a few weeks appear on coins. There are a few almost-unknown usurpers known best from a small number of surviving coins. Only two coins of Domitian II
are known, found in 1900 and 2004. Until the second coin turned up it was unclear if the
first was a fake (Domitian II seems to have been a short-lived Gallic emperor, almost
unknown to history). Dirtyoldcoins says there are only two known coins of Saturninus also:
http://dirtyoldcoins.com/natto/id/saturn.htm
(http://dirtyoldcoins.com/natto/indexb.htm has interesting short biographies on the
emperors and their family members who appear on coins).

ATB,
Aidan.
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Old 02-09-2010, 07:01 PM
rasiel rasiel is offline
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actually, yes on all three questions (though aidan's answer is correct). marcus (co-ruler with basiliscus), does not have any coins mentioning his name alone though this is a technicality. his brother basiliscus, the senior emperor, has solidi extant with his name and effigy alone and also another portion with his (presumed) effigy and legend bearing his name and marcus's.

with the exception of quietus and macrianus the coinage of all the other usurpers is generally of extreme rarity. some usurpers are known from historical sources but who left no known coinage. in fact, oftentimes it was the very act of coining your image and appending an "AVG" to your name that was the point of no return in an ambitious general's career. even doing so without adding the aug was a capital offense. a partial list of notable usurpers who are not known to have left coins would include avidius cassius, ingenuus, and the joint rebellion of proculus & bonosus.

as for simply very rare coins of emperors, yes, many examples. with the exception of valentinian III gold solidi the whole of the western roman empire after honorius is very scant.

ras
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