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A very small Collection of Caligula


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Caligula is widely regarded as the epitome of a tyrannical and above all insane emperor (Caesar madness). Yet history was determined by the state with which he had to fight the fiercest battles. Thus, even during his lifetime, but especially afterwards, the most evil things were attributed to him or statements or deeds were twisted in such a way that the later verdict could only be - this emperor is insane! Caligula is certainly not innocent of the events of that time - but it was precisely the hypocritical aristocracy that contributed significantly to the conditions and deeds of the young Gaius. 

On the one hand, they flattered him - on the other hand, they tried to eliminate him - even before his "terrible deeds". Closest confidants, friends, even beloved family members sought his life shortly after he took office - so that in the end the young emperor had no choice but to distrust everyone and everything from the very beginning. From the reports and the point of view of the ruling aristocracy, his actions seem brutal and irrational - but better illuminated - he had few real alternatives to take action against this class. And in the end, it was the senators themselves who took pleasure in denouncing and decimating each other.

I can recommend the Caligula biography by Aloys Winterling to everyone. This is also available in English.
https://www.amazon.de/Caligula-Biography-English-Aloys-Winterling-ebook/dp/B005CPYEGE 

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Unfortunately, the coins of Caligula are not very numerous in variations and quantity - and above all quite expensive, once the preservation is reasonably good or very good. Some bronzes still work, but silver pieces usually cost thousands. I currently have four coins in my collection.

 

I got the typical Caligula Ace with Vesta from my CGB friends yesterday. I thought the brown patina was so nice - so I took the bronze yesterday.

 

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Gaius Caesar Augustus Germanicus Caligula
Dupondius of the Roman Imperial Period 37/38 AD; Material: AE Bronze; Diameter: 28.5mm; Weight: 10.33g; Mint: Rome; Reference: RIC I (second edition) Gaius/Caligula 38; Obverse: Head of Caligula, bare, left. The Inscription reads: C CAESAR AVG GERMANICVS PON M TR POT for Caius Caesar Augustus Germanicus, Pontifex Maximus, Tribunicia Potestate (Gaius Caesar, Augustus, conqueror of the Germans, high priest, holder of tribunician power); Reverse: Vesta, veiled and draped, seated left on throne with ornamented back and legs, holding patera in right hand and long transverse sceptre in left. The Inscription reads: VESTA S C for Vesta, Senatus Consultum (Vesta, by the decree of the senate).

 

This Caligula Agrippa I sort of "got" - he's ok - but I think I'll replace this guy at some point. But it is ok. 

 

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Gaius Caesar Augustus Germanicus Caligula for Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa
Dupondius of the Roman Imperial Period 37/41 AD; Material: AE Bronze; Diameter: 27mm; Weight: 10.81g; Mint: Rome; Reference: RIC I (second edition) Gaius/Caligula 58; Obverse: Head of Agrippa, left, wearing rostral crown. The Inscription reads: M AGRIPPA L F COS III for Marcus Agrippa, Lucii Filius, Consul Tertium (Marcus [Vipsanius] Agrippa, son of Lucius, consul for the third time); Reverse: Neptune, cloaked, standing left, holding dolphin in right hand and trident in left. The Inscription reads: S C for Senatus Consultum (by the decree of the senate).

 

 

And the two bronze coins that now follow were / are already in my small Caligula stock.

 

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Gaius Caesar Augustus Germanicus Caligula for Divus Augustus
Dupondius of the Roman Imperial Period 37/41 AD; Material: AE Bronze; Diameter: 29mm; Weight: 15.48g; Mint: Rome; Reference: RIC I (second edition) Gaius/Caligula 56; Obverse: Head of Augustus, radiate, left.. The Inscription reads: DIVVS AVGVSTVS S C for Divus Augustus, Senatus Consulto (Augustus the divine, by decree of the Senate); Reverse: Gaius Caligula, laureate and togate, seated, left, on curule chair, holding branch in right hand and resting left hand against side. The Inscription reads: CONSENSV SENAT ET EQ ORDIN P Q R for Consensus Senatus Et Equestris Ordinis Populi Que Romani (With the will of the senate, the equestrian order, and the Roman people).

Comment: Whereas in the past, misguided by the identification of the seated figure with Augustus, it was taken for granted that the legend CONSENSV SENAT ET EQ ORDIN P Q R referred to the first princeps, such an interpretation is no longer plausible. Instead, the coinage recovered for Caligula's reign finds its precise interpretation in the literarily transmitted events at the beginning of his reign. The corresponding legend refers to Caligula's accession to power in Rome, when the emperor gave a speech before the senate, knights and representatives of the plebs (Cassius Dio 59,6; Suetonius, Caligula 14), which was to confirm the Consensus Universorum. While looking through older auction catalogues, we came across a coinage (Fig. 1) that now allows an identification of the seated Togatus with Caligula quite unambiguously[...]. For the discussion on the naming of the reverse representation see v. Kaenel in Schweizer Münzblätter 1978 pp. 39 ff.

 

 

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Gaius Caesar Augustus Germanicus Caligula
Sestertius of the Roman Imperial Period 37/38 AD; Material: AE Bronze; Diameter: 36mm; Weight: 27.46g; Mint: Rome; Reference: RIC I (second edition) Gaius/Caligula 37; Obverse: Head of Caligula, laureate, left. The Inscription reads: C CAESAR AVG GERMANICVS PON M TR POT for Caius Caesar Augustus Germanicus, Pontifex Maximus, Tribunicia Potestate (Gaius Caesar, Augustus, conqueror of the Germans, high priest, holder of tribunician power); Reverse: Legend in four lines in oak-wreath. The Inscription reads: S P Q R P P OB CIVES SERVATOS for Senatus Populusque Romanus Patri Patriae, Ob Cives Servatos (The senate and the Roman people to the father of the nation, the saviour of the citizens).

 

 

I would be pleased if you would show me your Caligula coins - whether large or small - whether city Roman or provincial. 

 

 

Edited by Prieure de Sion
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Caius Ae Sestertius 37-38 AD Obv Pietas seated left holding patera. Rv Emperor togate standing left sacrificing bull in front of the  hexastyle Temple of Divus Augustus. He is flanked by two attendants RIC 36 26.93 grms 34 mm Photo by W. Hansen 1220150974_caiuss6-Copy.jpg.51cd1c72782ac5f00c39f64808ac8765.jpg

In many respects this sestertius does resemble the sestertii minted by Tiberius which honor Divus Augustus and The restitution of the Asian cities by Tiberius. Both of these coins feature a seated individual on the obverse. By placing the image of Pietas on the obverse of his sestertius, Caius in effect is stating that he is going to continue with the policies set by his predecessors. 

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1 hour ago, bcuda said:

This is the Caligula I had that sold in a CNG auction about a year ago. It is the much rarer version of the Vesta AS that had the title DIVI in it.

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The smoothly worn details and patina make for an extremely attractive coin! Should have done well in the auction.

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 A collection of coins of Caligula.  Two other books about Caligula that I thought were very good are, Caligula, Emperor of Rome by Arther Ferrill. and Caligula by Anthony Barrett. My favorite interpretation of Caligula was in Robert Graves' I Claudius, thogh this is mostly directly from Suetonius.

Denarii of Caligua with reverse of his mother Agrippina , and of Augustus...

2kCJe6EmjWd3Fn8Qr4FPLL5eoHQ97N.jpg.777b285c7ffadb4d8246e0d72416f997.jpgz43986.jpg.01049b7b1fbb34b8b437829b6cfc91c5.jpg

sestertii of Caligula with his sisters ,  adlocutio , and corona...

73000839.jpg.fd688ec86777252285d9befe0516dd65.jpg

999507l.jpg.064125e4a70493794e9aa4eeb6566a71.jpg

 

image00603.jpg.8b2da465a5a373aaa1462a60b614f156.jpg

4530508.jpg.c617409cfd8a73477364b55f33c5a404.jpg

 

As with Vesta and small quadrans , minted in last two weeks of his life...

2797592l.jpg.2fb27d5371cc33909dd3ca15c7bb98f2.jpg

gz3J4wLTD78zLGi28osFE9Mm5scKXX.jpg.ea47e9744838511f11c668859b2ab592.jpg

Bam84fAme9qF3Kpak5G8M46e6iZ7jR.jpg.f2c31d30bad2e239d848aaa51f64aa71.jpg

 

lastly, my "logo" another Adlocutio, purchased from Tom Cederlind.

RI5015.jpg.093df75d4c225e42336dfe37dd5d8fe3.jpg

LEG-Caligula-Adlocutio.jpg

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Great thread!!! I'm drooling over here. 

I'll toss a  fewfun little bronzes into the pot:

IMG_0891.PNG.da7c6a40464fdd741f3da551f8a3e552.PNGIMG_5551(1).jpg.91eb027355ca35b38cbd93f29477bb6e.jpg

And one barbarous that I like to think us from his Germanic fans who would later raid and kill anyone they believed killed their emperor:IMG_5554(1).jpg.ee98f55fc9471ea02eb437ea14795cba.jpg

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Copper coin (AE as) minted during the reign of CALIGULA between 37 - 38 A.D. Obv. C.CAESAR.AVG.GERMANICVS.PON.M.TR.POT. Bare head left. Rev. VESTA.S.C. S – C to l. and r. of Vesta, veiled and dr., std l., on ornamental throne, r. holding patera, l. long transverse sceptre. SEAR #616. RICI #38. Pg.111. DVM #9 pg.80. RSCII #1803.

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Copper coin (AE as) minted at Rome for Germanicus (father of Caligula) in 19 A.D. Obv. GERMANICVS.CAESAR.TI.AVGVST.F.DIVI.AVG. N. Bare head right. Rev. C.CAESAR.AVG.GERMANICVS.PON.M.TR.POT. S.C. SC around legend. SEAR #600. DVM #2.

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There are a lot of wonderful coins in this thread.

Most of my impression of Caligula is derived from his portrayal in I, Claudius (by the great British actor John Hurt).  This portrayal is relentlessly negative and dark, although its accuracy is a little suspect, being based on Suetonius's gossipy revelations.

Despite Caligula's historical reputation, I find his coins to be generally artistic and the reverses can be whimsically entertaining (Three Sisters in a Three Graces pose, Ad Locutio) while the obverse portraits are almost uniformly imperial and imperious.  Initially I had intended only to have one of each major denomination (as, sestertius, denarius, and aureus) but the quality of his various sestertii have inspired me to pursue all of these major types.  Currently I lack only the epigraphic reverse type although arguably the Memoriae Agrippinae sestertii is part of Caligula's set of sestertii.

My current collection:

image.jpeg.e15010302fe9738c2c4e0ce895f8ecb2.jpeg

Edited by idesofmarch01
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 A selection of coins struck by Caligula to honor family members....

His father, Germanicus - dupondius...

0001LG.jpg.c67db6f449b498411309e863949615ed.jpg

 

sestertius  commemorating his mother...

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His mother , denarius of Agrippina...

fMJ4W7Rrs38AFCa96kpGD3cZ2HEzRJ.jpg.1bb5d00e1bb24aa21a44c8bb8d60dc1e.jpg

dupondius of Augustus with Caligula seated on reverse...

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As of his father, Germanicus...

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Two asses of his maternal grandfather , Agrippa

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677798l.jpg.615a29251d2880981fd791523ae4d144.jpg

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I get a new member in the collection - a Caligula Quadrans from Roma Numismatics, London.

 

 

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Gaius Caesar Augustus Germanicus Caligula
Quadrans of the Roman Imperial Period 39 AD; Material: AE Bronze; Diameter: 18mm; Weight: 3.03g; Mint: Rome; Reference: RIC I (second edition) Gaius/Caligula 39; Provenance: Ex Roma Numismatics London; Obverse: Pileus flanked by S C; Inscription: C CAESAR DIVI AVG PRON AVG; Translate: Caius Caesar Divi Augusti Pronepos Augustus (Gaius Caesar, great-grandson of the divine Augustus, Augustus); Reverse: Legend surrounding RCC large in center of field; Inscription: PON M TR P III P P COS DES III; Translate: Pontifex Maximus, Tribunicia Potestate Tertia, Pater Patriae, Consul Designatus Tertius (High priest, holder of tribunician power for the third time, father of the nation, consul elect for the third time)

 

No portrait of the young emperor Gaius Caligula, no head of another personality, no Roman or other deity, only the three letters RCC adorn the back of this bronze quadrans. They stand as an abbreviation for "Remissa ducentesima" (remission of the tax). The origins of this tax of one percent - the so-called "centesima" - date back to the time of the civil wars. It was levied in Rome and Italy on all goods put up for public sale at auction. It was collected by persons called "coactores" (Cic. ad Brut. 18, pro Rabir. Post. 11; Dig. 1 Tit. 16 s.17 §2). As mentioned, this tax is said to have been introduced at the time after the civil war (Tac. Ann. I.78) - Cicero mentions here that this was not the civil war between Octavian and Marcus Antonius, but from an earlier civil war, presumably between Marius and Sulla. Emperor Tiberius was later able to reduce the tax to half a percent (ducentesima) after he had turned Cappadocia into a province and thus increased the revenues of the empire (Tac. Ann. II.42). Caligula now abolished this tax at the beginning of his reign (RCC - Remissa ducentesima), as Suetonius (Suet. Kal. 16) reports - and this coin testifies here. The pileus depicted on the front is generally a symbol of freedom - which the young emperor propagated with this fiscal measure.

 

 

 

Edited by Prieure de Sion
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On 11/23/2022 at 8:39 PM, Octavius said:

 A collection of coins of Caligula.  Two other books about Caligula that I thought were very good are, Caligula, Emperor of Rome by Arther Ferrill. and Caligula by Anthony Barrett. My favorite interpretation of Caligula was in Robert Graves' I Claudius, thogh this is mostly directly from Suetonius.

Denarii of Caligua with reverse of his mother Agrippina , and of Augustus...

2kCJe6EmjWd3Fn8Qr4FPLL5eoHQ97N.jpg.777b285c7ffadb4d8246e0d72416f997.jpgz43986.jpg.01049b7b1fbb34b8b437829b6cfc91c5.jpg

sestertii of Caligula with his sisters ,  adlocutio , and corona...

73000839.jpg.fd688ec86777252285d9befe0516dd65.jpg

999507l.jpg.064125e4a70493794e9aa4eeb6566a71.jpg

 

image00603.jpg.8b2da465a5a373aaa1462a60b614f156.jpg

4530508.jpg.c617409cfd8a73477364b55f33c5a404.jpg

 

As with Vesta and small quadrans , minted in last two weeks of his life...

2797592l.jpg.2fb27d5371cc33909dd3ca15c7bb98f2.jpg

gz3J4wLTD78zLGi28osFE9Mm5scKXX.jpg.ea47e9744838511f11c668859b2ab592.jpg

Bam84fAme9qF3Kpak5G8M46e6iZ7jR.jpg.f2c31d30bad2e239d848aaa51f64aa71.jpg

 

lastly, my "logo" another Adlocutio, purchased from Tom Cederlind.

RI5015.jpg.093df75d4c225e42336dfe37dd5d8fe3.jpg

LEG-Caligula-Adlocutio.jpg

Wow, impressive group of gems 😮!

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I got this provincial Caligula today from Ibercoin.

 

 

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Gaius Caesar Augustus Germanicus Caligula
As of the Roman Imperial Period 37/39 AD; Material: AE Bronze; Diameter: 28mm; Weight: 10.96g; Mint: Carthago Nova, Hispania Tarraconensis; Reference: RPC I. 185, SNG Copenhagen 503; Provenance: Ex Subastas Ibercoin Madrid Spain; Obverse: Laureate head of Caligula right; Inscription: C CAESAR AVG GERMANIC IMP P M TR P COS; Translate: Caius Caesar Augustus Germanicus Imperator Pontifex Maximus Tribunicia Potestate Consul (Gaius Caesar, Augustus, conqueror of the Germans, Imperator, high priest, holder of tribunician power, consul); Reverse: Draped bust of Salus (Caesonia?), right; Inscription: CN ATEL FLAC CN POM FLAC II VIR Q V I N C - SAL AVG; Translate: Cnaeus Atellius Flaccus Cnaeus Pompeius Flaccus duumviri quinquennales - Salus Augusti (Gnaeus Atellius Flaccus, Gnaeus Pompeius Flaccus, duumviri for five years - Health of the emperor)

Comment: The reverse portrait has been traditionally identified, following Cohen, as Caesonia - the fourth and last wife of Caligula. This identification is disputed however by other numismatists who identify the portrait as either Antonia or simply Salus (without being an imperial personage in the guise of). Caesonia was married to Caligula in 39 AD. Two years later she was murdered with her infant daughter Drusilla. Duoviri or Duumviri (singular duovir and duumvir, German plural "Duumvirn") is the term for the holders of various public offices with two-man appointments ("duumvirate" or "two-man office") in the Roman Empire. Duoviri is the older term; especially in the imperial period they are called duumviri. Since the 4th century BC, duoviri are documented as the top office of a colonia, a municipium under Roman law and often also of other civitates. If there was no superior prefect, "state commissioner" or similar official at the top, the duumviri formed the city government. The office is to be understood as a copy of the Roman consulate. Every five years, two duoviri quinquennales were elected in many cities.

 

 

Edited by Prieure de Sion
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Somehow I'm on a Caligula trip right now ... 😬😂 - my newest honey.

 

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Gaius Caesar Augustus Germanicus Caligula
12 Units of the Roman Imperial Period 37/38 AD; Material: AE Bronze; Diameter: 22mm; Weight: 7.39g; Mint: Panticapaeum, Kingdom of the Bosporus; Reference: RPC I. 1904, MacDonald 302, BMC 8; Provenance: Ex CGB.fr Numismatique Paris France; Obverse: Bare head of Caligula right; Inscription: ΓΑΙΟΥ ΚΑΙΣΑΡΟΣ ΓΕΡΜΑΝΙΚΟΥ; Translate: Gaiou Kaisaros Germanikou (Gaius Caesar Germanicus); Reverse: Diademed head of Aspurgus right; monogram ΒΑΡ and mark of value in fields; Inscription: IB; Translate: Iota Beta (10 + 2 = 12 Units)

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What's with "my" Caligula Thread - asleep? No! 😄 

I get today some of my ordered Caligula coins. I want show you the videos I make. 

 

First the little AE Quadrans (RIC 39) - I like the well centered RCC reverse. The obverse with SC is not so well centered - but the reverse is absolute extremely fine.

 

 

And this provincial Coin from Caligula from Carthago Nova arrived today too - the RPC I 185 type. Like the patina and I like more the Iberian style. Is this at the reverse Caesonia or Salus - thats the question the experts not sure.

 

 

Guys I need more followers on my YouTube channel! Otherwise it will never happen that I'm a candidate for "I'm a Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here!" 😂

 

 

Edited by Prieure de Sion
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