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My two new Siliquae from the Vale of Pewsey Hoard have Arrived


DonnaML
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This is my first thread created here!

Here are the two coins I bought at the Noonans auction of this hoard a couple of weeks ago. The two footnotes apply equally to both of them.

1. Julian II (nephew of Constantine I), AR reduced Siliqua*, AD 362-363, Antioch Mint. Obv. Pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right, bearded, FL CL IVLIA-NVS PF AVG / Rev. VOT X MVLT XX in four lines within wreath; in exergue, ANT [Antioch]. 2.17 g., 19.33 x 18.40 mm., 6 h. RIC VIII 213 (p. 531), RSC V 147a, Sear RCV V 19128 (p. 279), Ghey 22 (this coin) [Ghey, E., “Vale of Pewsey, Wiltshire,” unpublished catalogue held by British Museum]. Purchased 17 May 2022 from Noonans (f/k/a Dix Noonan Webb) Auction, “The Vale of Pewsey Hoard of Late Roman Silver Coins,” Lot 11; ex Vale of Pewsey Hoard, discovered in Wiltshire 12-13 Sep. 2020, Portable Antiquities Scheme Hoard ID BM-7D34D9 (see https://finds.org.uk/database/hoards/record/id/3305).**

image.thumb.jpeg.3a5237446043bcda79f52301d6461120.jpeg

[I wanted this coin in particular because it was the only Julian II siliqua in the hoard in which he is wearing a beard, and because in general I think the vast majority of siliquae I've seen for him depict him as beardless. For example, this one from Arles that I own:  

Julian II Siliqua jpg version 2.jpg

2. Magnus Maximus [Emperor in West AD 383-388 by usurpation from Gratian], AR reduced Siliqua*, AD 383-388, Trier Mint. Obv. Pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right, DN MAG MAX-IMVS PF AVG [AV ligatured] / Rev. Helmeted Roma seated facing on throne, head left, holding globe in right hand and reversed spear in left hand, VIRTVS RO-MANORVM; in exergue, TR PS [TR = Trier Mint; PS = Pvsvlatvm (struck from refined, purified silver; see Sear RCV V, Introduction p. 7)]. 1.90 g., 16.32 x 16.08 mm., 12 h. RIC IX 84(b)(1) (p. 29), RSC V 20b (ill. p. 176), Sear RCV V 20644 (p. 422); Ghey 56f (this coin) [Ghey, E., “Vale of Pewsey, Wiltshire,” unpublished catalogue held by British Museum]. Purchased 17 May 2022 from Noonans (f/k/a Dix Noonan Webb) Auction, “The Vale of Pewsey Hoard of Late Roman Silver Coins,” Lot 82; ex Vale of Pewsey Hoard, discovered in Wiltshire 12-13 Sep. 2020, Portable Antiquities Scheme Hoard ID BM-7D34D9 (see https://finds.org.uk/database/hoards/record/id/3305).**image.png.73893f363a8f825de3f78566e8d5801c.png

*See Sear RCV V at p. 271: “in AD 357 the weight of the [siliqua] denomination was reduced by one-third to 2 scripula or 2.25 grams.”

**See Noonans Auction Catalogue, at https://www.noonans.co.uk/media/auction_catalogues/Coins 17 May 22.pdf, p. 3:

"Presented here for sale is a hoard of fourth and early fifth century Roman silver coins, recovered in September 2020 from farmland in the Vale of Pewsey, Wiltshire, by a team of three avid metal detectorists. Over the course of two days Rob Abbott, Dave Allen and Mick Rae discovered a total of 160 silver coins and coin fragments, which were subsequently submitted to the relevant authorities for processing according to the Treasure Act 1997 (PAS BM–7D34D9, BM 2020 T702).

No container has been recovered from the site and the coins’ dispersal over an area of around 30 metres across the field suggests that the original parcel was disrupted in recent times by agricultural activity. A few of the recovered coins were badly chipped, broken or fragmentary. Most of these breaks look fresh and it would seem that this unfortunate damage has resulted from regular ploughing of the field for agricultural purposes.

We should be enormously grateful, therefore, that the hoard was recovered when it was before more coins succumbed to a similar fate. Numismatists and historians alike should appreciate the diligent efforts of these three finders in rescuing the Vale of Pewsey Hoard and ensuring that this important group was properly recorded for future study.

Following assessment and appraisal the British Museum decided to acquire two Miliarensia from the group for the Nation’s collection. The remaining coins were disclaimed and returned to the original finders, who have now chosen to sell the hoard so that private scholars and numismatists may have the opportunity to acquire examples for their own collections. Only those pieces in fragmentary state have been retained by the finders, and all 142 complete, or near complete, coins are listed in this catalogue; eighteen Miliarensia and 124 Siliquae.

Amongst them are numerous rare and beautifully preserved specimens which will appeal to specialist Roman collectors and general numismatists alike."

The breakdown of the 142 lots is as follows (see id. p. 10):

CONSTANS (337–350) 1

CONSTANTIUS II (337–361) 2–7

JULIAN II (360–363) 8–11

VALENTINIAN I (364–375) 12–14

VALENS (364–378) 15–33

GRATIAN (367–383) 34–49

VALENTINIAN II (375–392) 50–59

THEODOSIUS I (379–395) 60–74

MAGNUS MAXIMUS (383–388) 75–92

FLAVIUS VICTOR (387–388) 93–95

ARCADIUS (383–408) 96–118

EUGENIUS (392–394) 119–133

HONORIUS (393–423) 134–142

See also https://finds.org.uk/database/hoards/record/id/3305, noting that “Most of the coins have been only lightly clipped to remove silver from the edges of the coins, unlike many hoards with a deposition date into the fifth century AD. There are also few obviously irregular coins in the group. The total weight in silver of the late Roman coins submitted is 328.76g, remarkably close to a Roman pound in silver.”

Please post your coins of any denomination of Julian II or Magnus Maximus, your siliquae of any emperor, and/or your coins with documented hoard provenances, especially from the UK.

 

Edited by DonnaML
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Ahhhhhh, I am so jelly right now!!!☺️

That Julian II is AMAZING!!!

And the Magnus is very rad as well.

Here's my holy Roman Siliqua:

IMG_3249(1).PNG.7661c6a7632271286ceaf060d3d7728f.PNG

Constantius II AD 337-361. AR Siliqua (20mm, 1.77 g, 5h). Constantinople mint, 11th officina. Struck AD 351-355. Pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right / VOTIS/XXX/MVLTIS/XXXX in four lines; all within wreath; C·IA. RIC VIII 102; RSC 342-3j. holed

 

Ex-Savoca

 

 

And then my Julian and Magnus Maximus:

IMG_2477.PNG.111d5d537ac38ac21df7fca7ea8b285a.PNG

Julian II AD 360-363. Nicomedia

Double Maiorina Æ

27mm., 8,68g.

D N FL CL IVLIANVS P F AVG, diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right / SECVRITAS REI PVB, bull standing right, two stars above, (palm)-NIKΓ-(palm) in exergue.

very fine

RIC 121; LRBC 2319.

 

 

2356668_1636983353.l-removebg-preview.png.a78f4b594f756e044f696169e5ad9bd3.png

MAGNUS MAXIMUS,

383-388 AD. Æ Reduced Follis (.90 gm 12mm) of Aquileia. Pearl diademed draped and cuirassed bust / Camp-gate. RIC.55a. VF+, brown patina. Rare.

Purchased from Savoca November 2021

 

 

Edited by Ryro
To bring joy to the world
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The beardless Julian II siliquae are prior to his reform of 362, when he introduced his own AE and AR types. So basically from ca. 360 to 362, Julian struck the continuation of Constantius II coinage, showing Julian's vows for his quinquennalia to decennalia. Plus, the earlier coinage is from the West, where Julian's power base stood and from where he started eastward on the Rhine and Danube towards a final clash with Constantius in 361, probably minted for this exact purpose: to finance his campaign. The bearded Julian, being post-362 (probably minted in 363 while Julian was in Antioch preparing for his Persian campaign) is of a brand new series that broke away with the types of Constantius II. The vows have also changed, from V - X to X - XX.

Edited by seth77
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Two fabulous coins with an even more fabulous provenance.  Congrats!!

I guess I get to post my favourite Julian for the first time in this new venue.  You will probably get bored of it. 😄

image.thumb.jpeg.0aa7d20ab5c3a327881ccb7c49c6d638.jpeg

My favourite Magnus Maximus happens to be from the Constantinople mint, while Theo I very briefly recognized him:

image.jpeg.a71044ef161594c8890e69d58eadcfa2.jpeg

And here's my favourite hoard coin, Constantine's first follis (RIC 66) from the 2017 Rauceby hoard:

image.thumb.jpeg.ee22fa8611af1aa2cb5e67183afee238.jpeg

I got it directly from the hoard's finder.  He recently consigned one to Roma, and it sold a few days ago for... 1800 GBP plus juice!! 🤯  I'm glad I got in when I did, I could no longer afford this coin!  The hoard contained only a few from this issue for Constantine, half of which the BM kept.  I know of only 2 others besides mine and the Roma coin that made it into collectors' hands.  The best one is @Heliodromus's. 👏

Edited by Severus Alexander
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Great pickups, Donna!  I meant to look into that auction because of the Hoard coins but simply forgot too... something that's been happening way too often these days, unfortunately. 

My Julian siliqua comes with a hoard provenance as well, but is not half as pretty. 

2101033930_JulianII-ARSiliquaexHarptreeHoard3472.thumb.JPG.3c32d9522ec5fabf6d88bd29cd8fdab1.JPG

JULIAN
AR Siliqua. 2.37g, 18.5mm.
Arelate (Arles) mint, AD 362-363. RIC VIII 309.
O: D N FL CL IVLIANVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bearded bust right.
R: VOTIS/ X/ MVLT/ XX in four lines within wreath, eagle in medallion at top of wreath; SCONST in exergue.
Ex 1887 East Harptree, Somerset Hoard (IRBCH 1424)

1436902880_MagnusMaximus-ARSiliquaexMichaelKelly3010.thumb.jpg.ae3294b15c3d55f116db7740299a1343.jpg

MAGNUS MAXIMUS
AR Siliqua. 2.06g, 16.8mm.
Trier mint, AD 383-388. RIC IX 84b.
O: D N MAG MAX-IMVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right.
R: VIRTVS RO-MANORVM, Roma seated facing, head left, holding globe in right hand, scepter in left; TRPS in exergue.
Ex Michael Kelly Collection

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4 hours ago, DonnaML said:

This is my first thread created here!

Here are the two coins I bought at the Noonans auction of this hoard a couple of weeks ago. The two footnotes apply equally to both of them.

1. Julian II (nephew of Constantine I), AR reduced Siliqua*, AD 362-363, Antioch Mint. Obv. Pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right, bearded, FL CL IVLIA-NVS PF AVG / Rev. VOT X MVLT XX in four lines within wreath; in exergue, ANT [Antioch]. 2.17 g., 19.33 x 18.40 mm., 6 h. RIC VIII 213 (p. 531), RSC V 147a, Sear RCV V 19128 (p. 279), Ghey 22 (this coin) [Ghey, E., “Vale of Pewsey, Wiltshire,” unpublished catalogue held by British Museum]. Purchased 17 May 2022 from Noonans (f/k/a Dix Noonan Webb) Auction, “The Vale of Pewsey Hoard of Late Roman Silver Coins,” Lot 11; ex Vale of Pewsey Hoard, discovered in Wiltshire 12-13 Sep. 2020, Portable Antiquities Scheme Hoard ID BM-7D34D9 (see https://finds.org.uk/database/hoards/record/id/3305).**

image.thumb.jpeg.3a5237446043bcda79f52301d6461120.jpeg

[I wanted this coin in particular because it was the only Julian II siliqua in the hoard in which he is wearing a beard, and because in general I think the vast majority of siliquae I've seen for him depict him as beardless. For example, this one from Arles that I own:  

Julian II Siliqua jpg version 2.jpg

2. Magnus Maximus [Emperor in West AD 383-388 by usurpation from Gratian], AR reduced Siliqua*, AD 383-388, Trier Mint. Obv. Pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right, DN MAG MAX-IMVS PF AVG [AV ligatured] / Rev. Helmeted Roma seated facing on throne, head left, holding globe in right hand and reversed spear in left hand, VIRTVS RO-MANORVM; in exergue, TR PS [TR = Trier Mint; PS = Pvsvlatvm (struck from refined, purified silver; see Sear RCV V, Introduction p. 7)]. 1.90 g., 16.32 x 16.08 mm., 12 h. RIC IX 84(b)(1) (p. 29), RSC V 20b (ill. p. 176), Sear RCV V 20644 (p. 422); Ghey 56f (this coin) [Ghey, E., “Vale of Pewsey, Wiltshire,” unpublished catalogue held by British Museum]. Purchased 17 May 2022 from Noonans (f/k/a Dix Noonan Webb) Auction, “The Vale of Pewsey Hoard of Late Roman Silver Coins,” Lot 82; ex Vale of Pewsey Hoard, discovered in Wiltshire 12-13 Sep. 2020, Portable Antiquities Scheme Hoard ID BM-7D34D9 (see https://finds.org.uk/database/hoards/record/id/3305).**image.png.73893f363a8f825de3f78566e8d5801c.png

*See Sear RCV V at p. 271: “in AD 357 the weight of the [siliqua] denomination was reduced by one-third to 2 scripula or 2.25 grams.”

**See Noonans Auction Catalogue, at https://www.noonans.co.uk/media/auction_catalogues/Coins 17 May 22.pdf, p. 3:

"Presented here for sale is a hoard of fourth and early fifth century Roman silver coins, recovered in September 2020 from farmland in the Vale of Pewsey, Wiltshire, by a team of three avid metal detectorists. Over the course of two days Rob Abbott, Dave Allen and Mick Rae discovered a total of 160 silver coins and coin fragments, which were subsequently submitted to the relevant authorities for processing according to the Treasure Act 1997 (PAS BM–7D34D9, BM 2020 T702).

No container has been recovered from the site and the coins’ dispersal over an area of around 30 metres across the field suggests that the original parcel was disrupted in recent times by agricultural activity. A few of the recovered coins were badly chipped, broken or fragmentary. Most of these breaks look fresh and it would seem that this unfortunate damage has resulted from regular ploughing of the field for agricultural purposes.

We should be enormously grateful, therefore, that the hoard was recovered when it was before more coins succumbed to a similar fate. Numismatists and historians alike should appreciate the diligent efforts of these three finders in rescuing the Vale of Pewsey Hoard and ensuring that this important group was properly recorded for future study.

Following assessment and appraisal the British Museum decided to acquire two Miliarensia from the group for the Nation’s collection. The remaining coins were disclaimed and returned to the original finders, who have now chosen to sell the hoard so that private scholars and numismatists may have the opportunity to acquire examples for their own collections. Only those pieces in fragmentary state have been retained by the finders, and all 142 complete, or near complete, coins are listed in this catalogue; eighteen Miliarensia and 124 Siliquae.

Amongst them are numerous rare and beautifully preserved specimens which will appeal to specialist Roman collectors and general numismatists alike."

The breakdown of the 142 lots is as follows (see id. p. 10):

CONSTANS (337–350) 1

CONSTANTIUS II (337–361) 2–7

JULIAN II (360–363) 8–11

VALENTINIAN I (364–375) 12–14

VALENS (364–378) 15–33

GRATIAN (367–383) 34–49

VALENTINIAN II (375–392) 50–59

THEODOSIUS I (379–395) 60–74

MAGNUS MAXIMUS (383–388) 75–92

FLAVIUS VICTOR (387–388) 93–95

ARCADIUS (383–408) 96–118

EUGENIUS (392–394) 119–133

HONORIUS (393–423) 134–142

See also https://finds.org.uk/database/hoards/record/id/3305, noting that “Most of the coins have been only lightly clipped to remove silver from the edges of the coins, unlike many hoards with a deposition date into the fifth century AD. There are also few obviously irregular coins in the group. The total weight in silver of the late Roman coins submitted is 328.76g, remarkably close to a Roman pound in silver.”

Please post your coins of any denomination of Julian II or Magnus Maximus, your siliquae of any emperor, and/or your coins with documented hoard provenances, especially from the UK.

 

That beard in the first coin is magnificent!

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Nice additions, Donna. The bearded siliqua of Julian is definitely interesting, as it more closely resembles the portraits typical of his ae issues. The documented hoard provenance is fantastic as well!

I had hoped to acquire one of the Valens miliarensia from the Noonans sale (I believe there were four or five), but they all went sky high. 😞 Unfortunately, I do not have siliquae of either Julian or Magnus Maximus, or any coin of them for that matter. Here's my siliqua of Theodosius I. 

1125214210_TheodosiusIsiliqua.thumb.jpg.3e1b7239b274aa41f313cccacb995239.jpg

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3 minutes ago, Riley said:

That beard in the first coin is magnificent!

I certainly like it! In terms of my favorite bearded Julians, it's right up there with this double maiorina from Sirmium:

image.thumb.jpeg.2fa62ad99282c5ab99c2c66ba0ccd385.jpeg

Does anyone know if RIC VIII specifies which Julian II siliquae show him with a beard and which don't? Oddly, neither RSC V nor Sear RCV V says anything about that subject in their coin descriptions.

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Responding to my own prompt, here is my only other coin with a documented hoard provenance:

Valens, AR reduced Siliqua, 364-367 AD, Rome Mint. Obv. DN VALEN-S PF AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, cuirassed bust right / Rev. VOT- V- MV•LT - X in four lines within wreath. In exergue: Mintmark RB. RIC IX Rome 10c (p. 118), RSC V 91(h) (ill.), Sear RCV V 19687. 17 mm., 2.00 g.  From 1887 East Harptree hoard (one of 19 coins of this type in hoard; see https://archive.org/details/thirdnumismatic08royauoft/page/46/mode/1up). Ex Spink Auction 16006, 26-27 Sep 2016, Part of Lot 3028. (See https://www.numisbids.com/n.php?p=lot&sid=1689&lot=3028.)*

Siliqua - Valens - jpg version.jpg

* The East Harptree hoard was discovered in 1887 on the land of Mr. W. Kettlewell of Harptree Court, while a search for a new spring was being conducted. Mr. Kettlewell kindly made them available for study at the British Museum, and they were written up by John Evans for the Numismatic Chronicle of 1888, pages 22-46. The British Museum was given a few of the most interesting coins, and the rest were returned to the owner. Many years later they were given to the father of the consignor by Mr. Kettlewell's son, and they have remained in their packing ever since. Evans noted \The coins when found were to some extent coated in dirt, and with what was probably a little chloride of silver. When carefully washed and brushed their remarkably good preservation became apparent, and there were none but what could be attributed to the emperor under whom they were struck\\. The coins offered here are as they were when returned from the BM in 1887/1888. Many exhibit light deposit, which could be easily removed by a competent conservator, but at the expense of the mint bloom that is apparent on many. The overall quality is remarkable, and few, if any, are clipped. Large numbers look ordinary to the naked eye, but when tilted towards the light, or examined under magnification, reveal extraordinary quality. (See https://www.numisbids.com/n.php?p=lot&sid=1689&lot=2858.)

And, apart from the two siliquae and the double maiorina already posted in this thread, this is my only other coin of Julian II:

Julian II, AE Centenionalis, 361-363 AD, Sirmium [Sremska Mitrovica, Serbia] Mint, 2nd Officina. Obv. Pearl-diademed, helmeted and cuirassed bust left, spear in right hand, shield in left, D N FL CL IVLIANVS P F AVG / Rev. VOT/X/MVLT/XX in four lines within wreath. In exergue: BSIRM [BETA SIRMIUM = Second officina in Sirmium] RIC VIII Sirmium 108, Cohen VIII 151, Sear RCV V 19172. 20.3 mm, 3.393 g.

Forum Ancient Coins, Julian II coin, large photo.jpg

I have no other coins of Magnus Maximus; the one from the Vale of Pewsey Hoard is my first.

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Those are two very nice siliqua Donna! Congratulations. Very interesting to have two coins of which you now exactly where they were found, and when. Thats a solid provenance!

As requested, my one and only siliqua. I absolutely love this coin. 

91.4.png.22ebf298bc3da9dfa73cf9c1f8eed481.png

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Noonans was kind enough to mail me a hard copy of the Vale of Pewsey Hoard auction catalogue, and it arrived today. Of course I already have it in pdf, and the photos in the hard copy are much smaller than what one can see when one zooms in on a computer, but to me there's still something gratifying about being able to hold a catalogue from which I bought coins in my hands, especially a catalogue documenting a hoard like this one.  Here are the cover page and the pages with my two coins, Lots 11 and 82.

image.thumb.jpeg.90b22e93c99ad3f5721f55a80fbcaa36.jpeg

image.thumb.jpeg.7dc2de5212cebbfe0f35d69266aa8f8a.jpeg

image.thumb.jpeg.7436556fd3b7cceb3429f8604d89be78.jpeg

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I only own one Siliqua, and its a piece I really like from Constantius II.
His earliest siliquae were still struck on the "argenteus" standard, of around 3 grams. Constantius would reform the siliqua, making it lighter in line with an increase of the value of silver in relation to gold during his reign.

image.thumb.png.7c0771cee3b3462940dc66a8742cf5fd.png

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