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Hello! I'm new to Roman Coin collecting and would love some advice!


Hughie Dwyer
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Hello everyone, 

I have just signed up to this forum and this is my very first message.

I am fairly new to coin collecting (just half a year's experience) and any advice would be much appreciated. I was immediately drawn to collecting Roman coins - especially the silver Denarius. I already own a few coins, some bronze but mostly silver.

Thank you in advance for any helpful advice.

Hugh

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Welcome here

What kind of advice are you looking for ?

Is it what to buy ? where to buy ?

As a generalist collector the first, wide/vague enough advice would be : buy what appeals to you. Every collection is different, given every collector is different. Going mainsteram is OK, but anything out of the path is OK too

As a second advice I would say have fun, and the third one learn, learn  and learn

Q

Edited by Qcumbor
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Welcome to the forum Hugh...

Would love to see some coins from your collection to get a feel of what appeals to you...

Starting out in ancients the only advice I'd give is maybe buy from reputable dealers first such as those on vcoins until you have a better idea as to types etc...

Above all enjoy!

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Thank you very much.

As you suggested, knowing where to buy would be extremely helpful. I bought my first few denarii off of eBay but now I am stating to buy off CGB.fr Numismatics, as I heard good things about them.

I was also wondering about fakes in the markets, especially in eBay. How easy is it to buy a fake? Maybe sometime in the future, I could post a few pictures of my small collection if that is ok.

Thanks again,

HD

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Welcome to the dark side, @Hughie Dwyer! It's a fun hobby. Here's some advice from a fellow Roman collector.

I'm not saying to buy the book before the coin, but books are essential. The introductory material in David Sear's Roman Coins and Their Values is worth the price of the books. Another great place to start is with the Wayne Sayle's book series about collecting ancient coins.

Read not only about the coins themselves, but about the history of Rome. Did you get a denarius of Lucius Verus issued in AD 166 to commemorate victories over the Parthians? Read about Marcus' and Lucius' campaigns! Read about Lucius Verus himself. Learn about Roman culture, clothing, way of life along the way. Investigate what a denarius might have purchased in the Antonine period. Was it a lot of money or a pittance? It's a fascinating journey.

Stay away from eBay. The coins there are typically overpriced and often fake. Don't feel that you have to have coins in a TPG slab; in fact, most of the time slabs are a waste of money. It's better to buy raw coins from a trusted dealer in most cases. A good place to shop is V-Coins, which is an online coalition of dealers with expertise in ancients.

Auctions are a good place to acquire coins, but be cognizant of the buyer's commissions, the shipping, the PayPal fee, the currency exchange fees and so on. That 40 Euro bargain at that European auction house might cost twice that in dollars ($80) by the time it's all said and done.

Don't specialize too soon. Get whatever tickles your fancy at first. Let eye-appeal, not "bargain price," be your guide. You may remain a general collector your entire "career" or you may end up specializing in some field, such as Republican denarii, or Flavian coinage, or Severan empresses or whatnot. You won't know what you like until after you look at hundreds or thousands of coins online.

Stick to a budget. It's tempting to buy one coin after another at first, but you're in the hobby for the long haul and credit card interest will eat you alive if you're not careful. Don't spend beyond your means, whatever they may be.

And above all -- have fun!!!

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Welcome to the hobby!

As Q stated, it is a little ambiguous to understand what kind of advice you need.

You gave a hint - you like silver denarii. So do I. But again this is a very generalist scenario. Nobody will stop you to buy any coin that draws your attention but most of us specialize (more or less). We have colleagues here who specialize on a certain dynasty. Or prefer buying coins having portraits of empresses. Or architectural/mythological/animal reverses.

Some other colleagues specialize deeper - a certain ruler or a denomination/type of coin (such as Athenian tetradrachms or Macedonian shields). There is no wrong or right way to collect.

As a collector having 2 years of experience, I can give some general advice

- take your time and study. This numismatic branch has more surprises than others (I think). When adding a new ruler, read also about his reign, important events happening then. Also learn general facts, they can be fun. First example in my mind - you probably have or will have a Domitian denarius. What is the most common reverse for them? why?
Also you can learn things about what mints were used, style differences...

- learn when to buy and when not to buy. There will be situations (often) when you need to ignore a coin. First is when in an auction you see that you are in a bidding war. And the price becomes unrealistic. You can continue or stop. You might win it. Does it worth it?
Other situations could be simply when the coin is too worn to be liked. My collection doesn't have too many pristine coins. BUT I tried to avoid (and mostly  managed to do it) coins that were simply too worn/damaged. Sometimes you can say "I can't afford it in a better condition, let me grab it". But be careful where you draw the line. It's not a pleasant moment when you browse the album and ask yourself "why did I buy that...?"

- buy only from trusted sellers / trusted auction houses. Sometimes I manage to steal some coins at low prices. And or course I am happy when this happens, but usually when something is too good to be true, this means it's not true. Spotting forgeries is not an easy task. Some of them are "good" and the only way to be sure is asking a specialist or researching yourself. If you find a die match with a known fake... but this is a vast discussion so it's better to stick with "know the coin or know the seller" for now.

- make sure your passion is not lost. Of course, the initial thrill will not last forever, but I still want to feel emotions when I hear GOING ONCE, GOING TWICE, SOLD and then when I open the envelope. Because I only buy coins that I like and feel are good addition to my collecting area and style.

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I have 6 denarii and an antoninianus. Pictures attached.

I am not too sure about the grading because they are only what was said about them when they were bought.

I hope these are OK. 

To add a bit more detail, I mainly like to collect denarii from the 1st to 3rd centuries, even though my earliest so far is this Hadrian. I have done fair amounts of research on each of my coins and in the empire in general. It is really fascinating and I hope to do loads more in the future. Many interesting topics have come up- even just in the replies I have received.

Thanks again to anyone who has given up their time to offer me such great advice.

By the way, the antoninianus is of Postumus.

HadrianDenarius.png

SeptimiusSeverusDenarius.png

CaracallaDenarius.png

GetaDenariusAsACaesar.png

GetaDenariusAsAnAugustus.png

ElagabalusDenarius.png

PostumusAntoninianus.png

Edited by Hughie Dwyer
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All these coins are excellent additions.
Another advice - when you catalogue your coins, also learn to distinguish the legends (if you don't yet)

Here is how I would add the Hadrian denarius in my catalogue

Hadrian, 117-138 AD. Denarius, Rome, circa 130. HADRIANVS AVG COS III P P,  laureate head of Hadrian to right. Rev. FELICITATI - AVGVSTI, galley sailing left, with steerman and four rowers; at stern, acrostolium, at prow, mast slanted forward. BMC 621. Cohen 712. RIC II, 3, 1400.
Last are catalogue entries, it is good to have access to them and check if the attribution is indeed correct.

 

Edited by ambr0zie
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Nice coins.

You shouldn't get a fake from CGB.fr. Which country are you in?

There are lots of fakes on eBay, but if you specialised in denarii, for example, it wouldn't be long before you could spot a fake quite well (there are websites that tell you what to look for). You'd also know what a good price is and get some good deals. Obviously, the rarer emperors are the ones to be most careful of, so perhaps don't buy those from eBay.

Usually, you'd add a reference to your description. You can search for your coins and their RIC numbers here http://numismatics.org/ocre/identify

Edited by John Conduitt
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2 minutes ago, ambr0zie said:

All these coins are excellent additions.
Another advice - when you catalogue your coins, also learn to distinguish the legends (if you don't yet)

Here is how I would add the Hadrian denarius in my catalogue

Hadrian, 117-138 AD. Denarius, Rome, circa 130. HADRIANVS AVG COS III P P,  laureate head of Hadrian to right. Rev. FELICITATI - AVGVSTI, galley sailing left, with steerman and five rowers; at stern, acrostolium, at prow, mast slanted forward. BMC 621. Cohen 712. RIC II, 3, 1400.
Last are catalogue entries, it is good to have access to them and check if the attribution is indeed correct.

 

OK will do!

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Just now, John Conduitt said:

Nice coins.

You shouldn't get a fake from CGB.fr. Which country are you in?

There are lots of fakes on eBay, but if you specialised in denarii, for example, it wouldn't be long before you could spot a fake quite well (there are websites that tell you what to look for). You'd also know what a good price is and get some good deals. Obviously, the rarer emperors are the ones to be most careful of, so perhaps don't buy those from eBay.

Thank you for your reply. I will look into these websites you mention. Also, I live in the UK. 

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Very good beginning. Now I'm going to teach by the Socratic method and ask you some questions so that you can learn by researching them.

Who was Postumus? What was the Gallic Empire? Who was the "legitimate" emperor in Rome during Postumus' reign? Which mints struck coins for Postumus? Why might there be a galley on his coins?

Who was Elagabalus? Who are his relatives? Are they on coins, too? What's that "horn" on his head on your coin? What percent silver was this coin?

What's so special about Geta as Augustus? When was he promoted from Caesar to Augustus? What's the difference between a Caesar and an Augustus? What happened to Geta? Who is Nobilitas? Why would Nobilitas appear on the reverse of a coin minted for a child?

Who is Caracalla? Why is his name on the coins Antoninus Pius? Who else has coins that read Antoninus Pius? How can you distinguish between all these people whose name is Antoninus Pius? What nationality/ethnicity might those captives be on the reverse of Caracalla's coin?

Who was Septimius Severus? Why might Mars -- the god of war -- be holding a branch, which is the symbol of peace? Are there different ways Mars is portrayed on Roman coins? What are some common epithets/avatars of Mars on coins? Which one is this? Is that a cud at the 3:00 position on the reverse? What is a cud? How do they happen? What's the difference between a "head" and a "bust" on a coin? Is this coin properly described? What kinds of portrait styles were used for Septimius Severus?

Who was Hadrian? Why might this coin have a galley on its reverse? What does COS III mean? What does P P mean? What date range can you assign to this coin's production?

What is meant by AE2 or AE3? Are these terms being used correctly here? Why do numismatists use terms like AE 3 anyway?

 

 

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1 hour ago, Hughie Dwyer said:

Thank you for your reply. I will look into these websites you mention. Also, I live in the UK. 

Ok me too. There's sometimes a bit of extra hassle buying from other countries - extra tax and customs fees (5% + £8 to £15 just to process), postal delays etc. That shouldn't stop you, but it can be nicer to get your coin the next day without a note from the postman asking for more money. There are good dealers in the UK, although not necessarily at the cheaper end: Silbury CoinsAG & S Gillis, Simon Hall. There are some of the best auctions too, like Noonans, Spink, TimeLineRoma. TimeLine in particular often have some low cost Roman coins.

Edited by John Conduitt
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14 minutes ago, Roman Collector said:

Very good beginning. Now I'm going to teach by the Socratic method and ask you some questions so that you can learn by researching them.

Who was Postumus? What was the Gallic Empire? Who was the "legitimate" emperor in Rome during Postumus' reign? Which mints struck coins for Postumus? Why might there be a galley on his coins?

Who was Elagabalus? Who are his relatives? Are they on coins, too? What's that "horn" on his head on your coin? What percent silver was this coin?

What's so special about Geta as Augustus? When was he promoted from Caesar to Augustus? What's the difference between a Caesar and an Augustus? What happened to Geta? Who is Nobilitas? Why would Nobilitas appear on the reverse of a coin minted for a child?

Who is Caracalla? Why is his name on the coins Antoninus Pius? Who else has coins that read Antoninus Pius? How can you distinguish between all these people whose name is Antoninus Pius? What nationality/ethnicity might those captives be on the reverse of Caracalla's coin?

Who was Septimius Severus? Why might Mars -- the god of war -- be holding a branch, which is the symbol of peace? Are there different ways Mars is portrayed on Roman coins? What are some common epithets/avatars of Mars on coins? Which one is this? Is that a cud at the 3:00 position on the reverse? What is a cud? How do they happen? What's the difference between a "head" and a "bust" on a coin? Is this coin properly described? What kinds of portrait styles were used for Septimius Severus?

Who was Hadrian? Why might this coin have a galley on its reverse? What does COS III mean? What does P P mean? What date range can you assign to this coin's production?

What is meant by AE2 or AE3? Are these terms being used correctly here? Why do numismatists use terms like AE 3 anyway?

 

 

Thanks for the reply. I'll get straight onto this!

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Welcome to ancients, @Hughie Dwyer.  That is a very impressive collection you've accumulated right off the start.  A lot of good advice in this thread already, so I'll just add a my two denarii worth and try not to repeat...

As for eBay, it is indeed a perilous place to buy coins, but that being said, that is where most of my ancients come from.  If you are careful, there are some great deals there.  If some of those you posted came from eBay, then I'd say you are starting out okay - I didn't see any obvious fakes.  

Grading:  I don't worry about grading at all.  Some ancients that are uncirculated look terrible - bad strike, off center, lousy metal.  Some VG ancients look fantastic - great patina, contrast, etc.  One of the most important factors is style - each die was prepared separately, with no hubbing (well, almost no hubbing; there is some debate about this I think).  Therefore a rather worn ancient can still be stunning because of the artistry, even with a lot of wear.  How do you grade this?  Heck if I know.  A lot of the slabs I see have grading that makes almost no sense to me as it seems to be all over the place.  

It's already been mentioned, but your "AE 2" attributions are not correct for denarii.  The AE indicates non-silver base metal (copper, etc.).  Silver is usually noted as "AR."  Attributing ancients is my favorite part of collecting, I think.  Some sites have already mentioned above, so I won't pile on - I will say that back when I first collected ancients in the 1980s, all we had were books, and, at the risk of being obnoxious, I have to say I much prefer the Internet - easier to search, great images, far more information.  I used to spend hours going through books, Sear or Mueller or whatever looking ups stuff, half the time without illustrations; it wasn't much fun, quite frankly.  

Anyway, I'll close with a coin from my collection that matches one of yours (yours is much, much nicer than mine!).   The attribution below the photos is the information I put on the cardboard that I insert in the flip behind the coin (the formatting gets screwed up when I cut and paste to NF - I don't know how to single space here):  

1497549673_Geta-Den.NOBILITASRIC13aDec2017(0).jpg.dd2e5376a268d333cd31ffdc30242aa3.jpg

Geta (as Caesar)          Denarius

(200-202 A.D.)

Rome Mint

P SEPT GETA CAES PONT

bare-headed, draped bust

right / NOBILITAS, Nobilitas

standing right, holding scepter

and statue of Minerva (or

palladium?)

RIC 13a; RSC III 90; BMC 223.

(3.02 grams / 17 mm)
eBay Dec. 2017     $20.60
     
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Hello and welcome @Hughie Dwyer! You have received excellent advice and guidance so far, and you already seem to have a pretty nice collection, so all I can really do is build on the previous posts with my own limited experience.

I second, third, fourth, whatever number we were on, VCoins as a place to purchase ancients. I have bought from various dealers on that site for years and have yet to experience any problems worth mentioning. Also, I never buy from dealers who don't offer a full refund if the coin(s) they sell you later turn up as fakes or forgeries. Nor do I buy from any dealers who don't have a "no questions asked" return policy of a certain period of time (usually 7 - 14 days). This gives me enough time to receive a coin, post it here, and gain enough assurance in it to keep it. This method has worked extremely well for me. I've even posted dealer pictures of coins for evaluation prior to buying. This forum contains many genuinely helpful people who genuinely seek to help others. They truly want others to enjoy the pursuit of ancient coins. I see very little, if any, discussions here about "investing" or "profiting" from the hobby, apart from buying responsibly and using caution where needed.

I also couldn't agree more about avoiding Ebay, unless you're buying from an established dealer there who you already know, and who offers the policies mentioned above. Some good dealers do have Ebay stores. Just use extreme caution when something looks too good to be true. It likely is.

Reading books on ancient coins has also helped me greatly. The Wayne Sales series contains a lot of great information, as do various books from Spink and other sources. I also enjoy reading general histories of the eras that I like to collect. Since Byzantines have recently captured my attention, I picked up a short history of that empire. Many of my ancient acquisitions arose from reading, which includes Marcus Aurelius, Julian II, and Nero (for Seneca), etc. This adds additional dimensions to collecting for me and personalizes my purchases somewhat. I'm not one to buy to fill holes and my collection will likely remain relatively small.

You have come to the right place! Enjoy!

Edited by ewomack
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Thanks again to everyone that has replied. There has been loads of great and useful information that I will soon work on. This will really advance my collection and research.

 

It is great to hear that, so far, I have been able to create somewhat of a good place to start. Just to confirm, are there any points regarding my coins that could arise suspicion? I know it can be hard to tell just from photos but, as I have been fairly concerned about fakes, it would be great to see if there are any uncertainties.

Thanks again. I have, most certainly, come to the right place.

Edited by Hughie Dwyer
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Excellent advice already given here, but I'll add my two quadrans.

Roman coins aren't my main area of collection, but I do find the era interesting and I'm a bottom feeder who grabs coins that don't garnish interest at auctions and a few on VCoins. That's gotten me to 77 emperors so far. Most of my Roman coins aren't impressive, but I'm very happy with them.

Reading

Honestly, I'm in it for more of the history than the coins. The following give a good overview of the period. I read both when I started last year. The second one is rather long, but is an excellent narrative and source of information.


Suetonius: The Twelve Caesars
Gibbons: The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire

Stores and Auctions

Savoca (Germany) is a great source for low to middle range coins. Just make sure to do some research beforehand as there's a tendency to overpay here.
Roma (UK) - another great option in your own country
London Ancient Coins (UK) - a great VCoins seller in your country

I've purchased from all three of the above multiple times.

Your big decision

Roman coin collectors fall into roughly three categories. You'll need to decide where you fit. There's no right or wrong answer. It just depends on your interests.

  1. People poppers. They try to collect every emperor, and often the wives and kids too. I'm in this category.
  2. History fans. While many try to broaden to as many emperors as possible, they're more interest in the subject behind each coin, since they all commemorate certain events. They have no issues acquiring multiple coins from the same emperor, since the obverses may be for vastly different occasions.
  3. Specialists. These drill in on a handful of emperors or types. When you see a slight variation of a legend go for a lot, it's usually due to a few specialists.
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15 minutes ago, kirispupis said:

Excellent advice already given here, but I'll add my two quadrans.

Roman coins aren't my main area of collection, but I do find the era interesting and I'm a bottom feeder who grabs coins that don't garnish interest at auctions and a few on VCoins. That's gotten me to 77 emperors so far. Most of my Roman coins aren't impressive, but I'm very happy with them.

Reading

Honestly, I'm in it for more of the history than the coins. The following give a good overview of the period. I read both when I started last year. The second one is rather long, but is an excellent narrative and source of information.


Suetonius: The Twelve Caesars
Gibbons: The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire

Stores and Auctions

Savoca (Germany) is a great source for low to middle range coins. Just make sure to do some research beforehand as there's a tendency to overpay here.
Roma (UK) - another great option in your own country
London Ancient Coins (UK) - a great VCoins seller in your country

I've purchased from all three of the above multiple times.

Your big decision

Roman coin collectors fall into roughly three categories. You'll need to decide where you fit. There's no right or wrong answer. It just depends on your interests.

  1. People poppers. They try to collect every emperor, and often the wives and kids too. I'm in this category.
  2. History fans. While many try to broaden to as many emperors as possible, they're more interest in the subject behind each coin, since they all commemorate certain events. They have no issues acquiring multiple coins from the same emperor, since the obverses may be for vastly different occasions.
  3. Specialists. These drill in on a handful of emperors or types. When you see a slight variation of a legend go for a lot, it's usually due to a few specialists.

Thank you, great advice. I think I'm in the first category, like you!

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Welcome to the forum and the hobby! I am fairly new to coin collecting too and I also reside in the UK. . Heres's some more tips from me. 

- People have already mentioned the vcoins marketplace which hosts a good selection of reliable deals. MA SHOPS is another coin marketplace worth checking out.

- To help your attributions, use wildwinds.com. Wildwinds, although not totally complete and with the occasional mistake, is an accessible catalogue of Roman coinage. See if you can find your Getas. https://www.wildwinds.com/coins/ric/geta/i.html. Another useful online catalogue is Online Coins of the Roman Empire, found at https://numismatics.org/ocre/. These resources are helpful as a guide/starting point to getting fuller and more detailed attributions too and for helping you to learn what exactly terms such as Head, Bust, exergue, fields and all that mean. 

https://www.tesorillo.com/aes/home.htm Is a great resource for identifying Late Roman Bronzes too, and allows you to search by reverse/portrait.

https://www.coinarchives.com is a useful resource for assessing prices. It allows you to search for and find the prices realised for coins at all auctions in the last six months for free. Membership gives you access to all the data but I cannot afford that.

- My favourite online shops based in the UK are London Ancient Coins, Lodge Antiquities, Den of Antiquity. In terms of auctions you have Roma Numismtics and Naville Numismatics. With that said, I would say not to be frightened of buying from Europe. I have yet to have an issue despite making many purchases. I haven't been brave enough to participate in an overseas auction yet though, per the increased economic uncertainty alluded to above.

- You've done well to begin cataloguing your coins and keeping up to date with this. It becomes a lot less fun when you have to catalog a big pile at once.

- I mostly agree with those who say stay away from eBay. The state of ancient coins on eBay UK is about as bad as it has ever been with fakes and price gouging. I believe I recognise your Hadrian from king_radio on eBay, who is one of the last decent sellers on there and provides authentic coins. I actually remember tracking down that very Hadrian to its auction house origin. Click the underlined text and hopefully the link will take you to the auction listing. Now you know that the experts at Roma Numismatics have judged that this coin is real 🙂. The rest of your coins look fine to me too and I would be happy to purchase them. For the record,  the only other eBay sellers I totally trust are aulusplautius who does auctions and Carpe Diem

- The one thing I do regret is rushing into collecting. The initial euphoria is quite overwhelming. I collect Roman Imperial coinage, and now I regret buying unremarkable coins just to get the emperor. These days I stick to historically important issues that tell a story or serve as a piece of historical evidence. Sometimes I think how much more joy I would have had, had I abstained from buying 5 unremarkable coins and bought one remarkable one instead. Although it can be hard to deviate from your subconscious budget limit which plays a role. Subsequently, I have only breached my £100 limit twice. I also recommend sticking to a given collecting period initially. I personally found having a mixed bag of coins from different eras and civilisations quite unsatisfying and ended up selling off any outliers. Now I focus exclusively on Roman Imperial coinage until 363 AD. With this strategy it becomes much easier to do the deep learning that others have encouraged.

- One thing to keep in mind with this forum and the hobby in general is that people are very passionate and enthusiastic. Feel free to ask any question or discuss any aspect of coin collecting and people will engage heartily.

Edited by Steppenfool
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6 hours ago, Hughie Dwyer said:

Thank you in advance for any helpful advice.

Welcome to this friendly and helpful forum. I have been collecting ancient coins for 50 years and in the 1990s I started a website which was intended to be helpful to beginners. Now It is many years later and the site has been revised and expanded almost every month:

http://augustuscoins.com/ed/

If you have basic questions, my answers are in there somewhere!

It has a page on buying:  http://augustuscoins.com/ed/numis/buying.html  with links to almost all dealers and auction firms. 

It has pages on rarity and value and collecting-themes and books and many other topics.

Ancient-coin collecting is a great hobby! Enjoy!

 

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7 hours ago, Spaniard said:

Would love to see some coins from your collection to get a feel of what appeals to you...

Thanks....A very nice selection!...Outside all the great advice given would just like to say you have a good eye!...

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Welcome to the hobby, and welcome to the forum!

I would mostly agree with all the other posters here - VCoins and ma-shops are good (although they can be a little expensive). I would also recommend Roma Numismatics for auctions.

https://www.vcoins.com/en/Default.aspx

https://www.ma-shops.co.uk/

https://www.romanumismatics.com/

It might be a fun exercise to buy a couple of group lots at an auction (Roma has a few decent ones at the moment). That way, you can get several decent coins for (generally) less than they would sell for at retail, and learn how to identify them, all the different rulers/denominations etc.

eBay can be a great place to buy coins, but there are lots of fake sellers out there. I'd recommend buying from sellers that have a physical shop as well as an eBay store, such as denant, del550, carpe-diem-numismatics, cpcoins and ancient17.

Colin Colyton deals a lot with uncleaned coins, and is also very good.

There are also lots of great private sellers out there too that I would always recommend, such as aulusplatus, penterry-mart.

There are a bunch of other excellent sellers on eBay (including me lol), but if you're unsure whether a coin is genuine or not, you can always make a post here 🙂

Biddr is also nice, and is an auction hosting platform that compiles loads of different ancient coin auctions. Just be aware of postage costs and fees before bidding.

 

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6 minutes ago, Harry G said:

Welcome to the hobby, and welcome to the forum!

I would mostly agree with all the other posters here - VCoins and ma-shops are good (although they can be a little expensive). I would also recommend Roma Numismatics for auctions.

https://www.vcoins.com/en/Default.aspx

https://www.ma-shops.co.uk/

https://www.romanumismatics.com/

It might be a fun exercise to buy a couple of group lots at an auction (Roma has a few decent ones at the moment). That way, you can get several decent coins for (generally) less than they would sell for at retail, and learn how to identify them, all the different rulers/denominations etc.

eBay can be a great place to buy coins, but there are lots of fake sellers out there. I'd recommend buying from sellers that have a physical shop as well as an eBay store, such as denant, del550, carpe-diem-numismatics, cpcoins and ancient17.

Colin Colyton deals a lot with uncleaned coins, and is also very good.

There are also lots of great private sellers out there too that I would always recommend, such as aulusplatus, penterry-mart.

There are a bunch of other excellent sellers on eBay (including me lol), but if you're unsure whether a coin is genuine or not, you can always make a post here 🙂

Biddr is also nice, and is an auction hosting platform that compiles loads of different ancient coin auctions. Just be aware of postage costs and fees before bidding.

 

Yes those are all in the UK (Aulusplautius, cpcoins, denantcarpe-diem-numismaticspenterry-mart, ancient17, colin_colyton), so postage and fees aren't double the cost of the coin.

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