CPK Posted January 2 · Supporter Share Posted January 2 (edited) I hope everyone is doing well this second day of the year 2023. One of the things I look for most in a coin - especially Roman Imperial - is a nice portrait. To look at a centuries-old coin and see the realistic and individualized likenesses of historic figures such as Augustus, Nero, Titus, Hadrian, and others is, for me, one of the great things about ancient coin collecting. Even portrait coins of the later Empire, despite the decline in realism and artistry, can be impressive. The fact that all these coins were struck by hand with hand-engraved dies, each with slight variations in type, style, and execution, brings even more fascination and color into the hobby. Each coin represents the artistic abilities of the engraver. Some were clearly masters of the art, engraving beautiful portraits of enduring magnificence. Others seem to have been cartoonists who took up die-engraving as a side hustle. Finding a portrait coin of that "fine style" - a term impossible to define but intuitively recognized - gives great satisfaction. I know many of you feel the same way - I have seen so many amazing portrait coins posted here! SO...I thought it would be fun to start an on-going, chronological "Portrait Gallery" of Roman emperors, starting with Augustus. The rules for posting are as follows: 1. Each emperor will have a 48-hour window for posting. 2. The idea is to post your best/favorite portrait coin(s) of that emperor, with a short explanation for why you selected it. 3. Portraits of associated empresses, Caesars, etc. are also welcome! 4. Don't be intimidated if your "best" is not as good as others - the important thing is to post what appeals to you about the portrait. Not all great portraits need to be "mint state". (Goodness knows mine aren't!) ******************** 2/19/2023 UPDATE: First of all, a huge thank you to everyone who has participated in this thread! It's been a ton of fun to see all the incredible portrait coins posted and I look forward to seeing many more! 👍 NOW, as we progress through the history of the mid-later Roman Empire, things get complicated. Lots of joint-emperors, usurpers, and short reigns, not to mention the East/West split. In order to organize the posting a bit, and give people an opportunity to see in advance when to post which Emperor, we (by which I mean @Severus Alexander!) have created a schedule which we'll be using from now on: (Please feel free to save/download the schedule for your own reference.) This will let folks know what to expect and relieve me of having to make that decision every 48-hour period. 😄 ALSO, in order to further streamline the schedule, I am introducing a set time - 3pm Eastern Standard - as the time when we switch from one Emperor to another. That way, I do not hold up the thread if I am unable to introduce the new Emperor for whatever reason. From now on, 3pm EST every 48 hours is the time we move on to the next Emperor's portraits! And once again, a huge THANK YOU to @Severus Alexander for putting in so much effort to help me organize and streamline the thread! 👏👏👏 ************************* To start things off, here is one of my favorite portrait coins of the first emperor. Despite being a provincial mint, Antioch (IMO) consistently produced some of the finest and most artistic portraits of the entire Empire. The very fine and sensitive features, and the idealized form of this portrait reminds me almost of round sculpture. I also see in the shape and presentation of the bust the influence of the earlier Seleucid portraits - the slight upward gaze and naturally flowing hairlines. For the next 48 hours - post your Augustus Portraits! Can't wait to see what you all have! 😉 Edited March 5 by CPK 28 1 1 2 1 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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