Tejas Posted February 9 · Member Share Posted February 9 (edited) I bought the coin fragment below. This is a quarter section of an aureus of Trajan Decius, minted in the name of his younger son Hostilian. The fragment was found in Vinnytsia oblast, Urkaine. These fragments (chopped aurei) have a unique and highly interesting interpretation. According to the author Aleksander Bursche "The Battle of Abtitus, the Imperial Treasury and Aurei in Barbaricum" (free on Academia.edu), these coin fragments come from the imperial treasury, which fell into the hands of the Goths after the battle of Abritus in AD 251. At Abritus the Roman army was utterly defeated and Trajan Decius and his older son Herennius Etruscus lost their lifes. Gold coins of Trajan Decius and his family are the most frequent finds of all Roman gold in the Barbaricum north of the Black Sea. This gold is likely from the imperial treasury. Complete coins from the Barbaricum are almost always holed. According to Bursche, the holes were applied carelessly and in haste, probably directly after the battle, when Gothic warriors adorned themselves with the spoils. Most of the coins, however, were transported north and some of them were apparently sacrificed. Hence, in a number of different locations in western Ukraine and eastern Poland, shallow holes have been found (not in a burial context), which contained numerous pieces of chopped aurei. Some of the chopped aurei had previously been pierced. The interpretation is that these coins were destroyed as sacrifices to the gods to thank them for the victory. This practice is in line with Germanic tradition going back to the Clades Variana of AD 9, of destroying parts of the spoils of war and depositing them in bogs, lakes or burying them in the ground as sacrifces. The act of destruction, seems to have been part of the sacrificial ritual and may have symbolized a second or spiritual defeat of the enemy. The coin-fragment is RIC 181b I think: Obv.: C VALENS HOSTIL MES QVINTVS N C Bare-headed, draped and cuirassed bust of Hostilian to right. Rev.: PRINCIPI IVVENTVTIS Prince standing left, holding standard in his right hand and spear in his left. Edited February 9 by Tejas 10 3 1 3 1 5 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
Join the conversation
You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.