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Most tasteless/abusive use of ancient coins


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Posted (edited)

that is just amazing....it reminds me of the story of Cleopatra's wager with Mark Antony.

image.png.c3ea0a28237dae0d6f988483bad281bb.png

Detail from a painting by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo  (1696–1770), The Banquet of Cleopatra, public domain image from wikipedia.

Cleopatra bet Anthony that she could spend 10 million sesterces on one dinner.  As the dinner proceeded Anthony remarked that he was surprised that such an ordinary dinner could possibly be so expensive....Cleopatra had him right where she wanted him:

"At this moment she was wearing in her ears those choicest and most rare and unique productions of Nature (the two largest pearls known to the world); and while Antony was waiting to see what she was going to do, taking one of them from out of her ear, she threw it into the vinegar, and as soon as it was melted, swallowed it."

- Pliny, Natural History, 9.58

Lucius Plancus, arbitrator of the wager, declared Cleopatra the victor to quickly save the second pearl from a similar fate. The second pearl was cut in two and became pendant earrings for Venus, in the Pantheon at Rome.

Edited by Sulla80
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That coin ring is impressive. I've made some with modern silver coins (including my own wedding band). I'm surprised he was able to do it without breaking the coin, though he does describe almost having an issue with that. 

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10 minutes ago, Kazuma78 said:

That coin ring is impressive. I've made some with modern silver coins (including my own wedding band). I'm surprised he was able to do it without breaking the coin, though he does describe almost having an issue with that. 

Agreed. So many ancient silver coins are crystalized (even if the work-hardened outside 'shell' of the coin looks OK) that this seems like a risky venture.

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1 hour ago, Romancollector said:

I don't completely dislike the concept of a coin watch, but I dislike the fact that they had to use incredibly rare Constantinian multiples for them......

Wow! Do you have any more information on these? Definitely seems irresponsible to put coins like that into jewelry.

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Posted (edited)

OK, so I found the watch .. by Bulgari.

image.thumb.png.002b270c0100ed185c3d091408ef9761.png

I suppose if I had a spare 450,000 CHF I could buy it and "deslab" it. 🙄

It's an interesting (and scarce) coin type... despite depicting Constantine, it was likely issued by his son Constantine II in the interregnum after Constantine's death, as a form of self-promotion.

https://www.academia.edu/61720005/The_AVGVSTVS_CAESAR_and_CAESAR_X_X_silver_multiples_and_the_interregnum_337_CE_2021_Lars_Ramskold_Niš_and_Byzantium_XIX_pp_381_416_

Edited by Heliodromus
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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, Heliodromus said:

OK, so I found the watch .. by Bulgari.

image.thumb.png.002b270c0100ed185c3d091408ef9761.png

I suppose if I had a spare 450,000 CHF I could buy it and "deslab" it. 🙄

Yeah that’s awful. We need a group like PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) for ancient coins… PETAC! Go into fancy watch shops and free ancient coins back to their optimal habitat (my house). 😬

Edited by Orange Julius
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I've seen years ago, but couldn't find it anywhere now, a gold dental prothesis made of melted roman aurei. The guy went to the dentist with enough aurei for the whole thing. The dentist couldn't refuse, he said, but took pictures of the coins to remember which is which (aureus/tooth). Sounds crazy, I would have kept the aurei and melted down a gold bar instead I guess.

Q

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6 hours ago, Romancollector said:

I don't completely dislike the concept of a coin watch, but I dislike the fact that they had to use incredibly rare Constantinian multiples for them......

1546006198_bulgariwatchconstans.thumb.jpg.e8698063f89462671d3868a0458ef473.jpg632592724_bulgariwatchconstantine.thumb.jpeg.1cd97b7a429ac9cd3eb12de24191ba94.jpeg

Words cannot describe my disapointment and disgust from viewing that image. 

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Posted (edited)
20 hours ago, Heliodromus said:

I just came across this ghastly set recently from the Trier Rheinisches Landesmuseum. Made c.1732.

https://rlp.museum-digital.de/index.php?t=objekt&oges=5721

Does it get any worse than this ?

image.thumb.png.c9c199d327f186d088f11ba7fa613cac.png

image.thumb.png.0533116188db427a929434513555be33.png

 

This is the 1700s version of eating dolphin meat. 
 

What’s the the central coin in the lid? Looks like a giant Valentinian III solidus. 

Edited by Egry
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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Egry said:

What’s the the central coin in the lid? Looks like a giant Valentinian III solidus. 

Apparently that's something from 17th or 18thC. If you zoom in it looks like some long haired european monarch.

image.png.974cd2cf9a9406a03b5f2fbe508cda1d.png

 

This is the Google translation of the museum blurb:

Quote

In the massive golden coin cup of the Trier cathedral dean, pride in local evidence of antiquity is combined with the claim to ecclesiastical power and the need for representation. 41 antique gold coins, eight gold casts of antique pieces and two magnificent gold medals from the 17th and 18th centuries are included in the set.
The throat of the goblet lid is adorned with the donor's enameled coat of arms between his initials and the year 1732. A medal of the cathedral chapter from 1729 is embedded in the top of the lid.

 

Edited by Heliodromus
typo
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I've got to wonder, aren't there any laws (in US, or elsewhere) covering destruction of historical artifacts, even if private property? What if the buyer of the EID MAR aureus decided to turn it into a ring in same fashion as done above? What if it was something even rarer, such as the only known coin of some usurper? How about buing a Rembrandt and cutting out the canvas to make a "cool" baseball cap ?

 

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31 minutes ago, Al Kowsky said:

Ergy, You have to keep in mind 300 years ago these coins weren't valued much mor than bullion. Gold & silversmiths have been using ancient coins for centuries, especially for jewelry.

Ya I know. All these Kings wanted was to be anywhere near the glory of Rome. 
 

let me restate my earlier comment. 
 

it was like eating dolphin meat 30 years ago, no one gave a schnitzel. (Fyi I’m not a dolphin fanatic just using it for effect). 

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40 minutes ago, Heliodromus said:

I've got to wonder, aren't there any laws (in US, or elsewhere) covering destruction of historical artifacts, even if private property? What if the buyer of the EID MAR aureus decided to turn it into a ring in same fashion as done above? What if it was something even rarer, such as the only known coin of some usurper? How about buing a Rembrandt and cutting out the canvas to make a "cool" baseball cap ?

 

 

In plenty jurisdictions such acts are criminalized. At least in many countries of the European Union

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Posted (edited)

Ancient coins in a block of lucite — The Horror 🤢

(Thank the ”Almighty” they are cheap fakes.)

image.thumb.png.5a587a59dc50ad245afe4147615c32ae.png

I confess that I‘ve thought about doing this with real ancients before I came to my senses.

I just noticed the really bad Herod the Great is upside down.

 

Edited by LONGINUS
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2 hours ago, LONGINUS said:

Ancient coins in a block of lucite — The Horror 🤢

(Thank the ”Almighty” they are cheap fakes.)

image.thumb.png.5a587a59dc50ad245afe4147615c32ae.png

I confess that I‘ve thought about doing this with real ancients before I came to my senses.

I just noticed the really bad Herod the Great is upside down.

 

Are those even genuine coins?

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