Benefactor Phil Davis Posted November 22, 2022 · Benefactor Benefactor Share Posted November 22, 2022 (edited) I've never really been willing or even able to name a "favorite coin" in my collection. I have quite a few I'm rather partial to. I certainly didn't expect that to change at this relatively late date in my collecting life. Never say never... One of the rarest, most sought after denarii in the entire Republican series is the only silver coin struck by the moneyer C. Numitorius, Crawford 246/1, in 133 BC on Crawford's dating, (The same moneyer also issued several much more common bronze denominations, semis down to sextans.) It's long been recognized as an important rarity, R9 in Sydenham, and truly is one of the types by which a Republican collection is judged. Of course I've always badly wanted one, but the few to appear in the market all had noticeable problems (despite being rather pricey) and I was never seriously tempted. Until now... It's the holiday season and I bought myself a slightly early Chanukah present. The types are typical of the period: head of Roma on the obverse, Victory in quadriga on the reverse. What makes the type "sexy" of course is the name C. NVMITORI in the exergue. These are the only coins issued by the Numitoria gens, or at any rate the only ones that have survived. Nothing is known about the moneyer with any certainty; Crawford is willing to expand the name slightly to C. Numitorius C.f. Lem., mentioned in a Senatus consultum, but says little else. Grueber in the BMC catalogue cites speculation that the moneyer may be a certain Sullan associate Caius Numitorius who was put to death by Marius and Cinna in 87 BC, but acknowledges that this is uncertain. Really, all we have are the coins. And glorious coins they are, at least when struck by the best pair of dies. Rarity aside, the craftsmanship on those two dies is worlds better than anything else I'm aware of from the early to mid 2nd Century BC, of any type. When the coin presented here was offered by the San Marino firm Artemide Aste, of the quality I wanted, struck from the dies I wanted, I knew I had to have it. Eating is overrated. Here are the dealer's quite good photos. I've looked at maybe 30 examples, in person, online or in catalogues. Anyone who knows me knows that I'm loath to use terms like "finest known," because how can we ever know that really, but if this isn't the finest surviving example of this classic rarity, someone will need to show me a better one to convince me. My friends at Artemide Aste had been quite taken with Aaron Berk's video of the "unboxing" of the gold Eid Mar we (HJB) recently purchased for a client and asked me to do something similar when I received this coin. I felt a little sheepish about it, because although I absolutely adore this coin, it is two zeroes shy of the gold Eid Mar, but the auction house has been very helpful and I wanted to accommodate them in return. Here's a link to the video; thanks to Aaron for shooting it and posting it on his YouTube podcast channel: Edited November 29, 2022 by Phil Davis 28 2 1 1 3 1 4 12 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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