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Ephesian Domitian Caesar Bronze


David Atherton

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It seems there has been a small hoard of Flavian era Ephesian imperial bronzes recently dispersed in trade. This Domitian Caesar is my fourth one in as many months, normally these are very hard to come by!

 

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Domitian Caesar [Vespasian]

Æ18, 2.71g
Ephesus (?) mint, 77-78 AD
Obv: CAESAR DOMITIANVS AVG F; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: COS V PRINC IVVENT; S C in field; Cornucopiae
RIC 1521 (R2). BMC spec. acquired 1989. BNC -. RPC 1488 (2 spec.).
Ex Bucephalus, Black auction 17, 24-25 March 2023, lot 403.

Late in Vespasian's reign a rare series of orichalcum bronze coins were struck in Asia Minor at an unknown mint. Although imperial in appearance, the style, weight system, and metal used all point to a mint other than Rome. Due to their extreme rarity today, they could not have been struck for any great length of time (the date cannot be narrowed down any further than Vespasian's COS VIII, 77-78 AD). The types consist of ones variously copied from either Rome or local provincial issues. A stylistic similarity with the earlier 'o' mint denarii possibly struck at Ephesus has been noted by both RIC and RPC. This extremely rare small bronze struck for Domitian Caesar featuring a cornucopiae on the reverse echoes similar provincial designs from the East.

 

In hand.

 

Thank you for looking!

Edited by David Atherton
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Very interesting, @David Atherton.  A while back I chanced on what I think is one of these Asia Minor Vespasians, this an as-sized AE.  I had some trouble attributing it as RIC 1498 and 1499 have the same description on OCRE.

Vespasian-EphesusasCeresJun2022(0).jpg.d7ecd7903209962067f0460c5762fbed.jpg

Vespasian  Æ Large (As?) (77-78 A.D.) Ephesus / Asia Minor Mint  [IMP CAESAR VESPA]SIAN  AVGVS[TVS], laureate head right / [PONT MAX TR PO]T P P · COS · VIII [CENS], [S] C in fields, Ceres seated left, holding two corn-ears and torch. RPC II 1472; RIC II 1498/1499. (11.99 grams / 28 x 26 mm) eBay June 2022 

Notes:  OCRE list RIC 1498 and RIC 1499 with identical descriptions but no examples for either; RPC Online references RIC 1498 only and Kraay 3.  RPC has single example with SC in exergue; this one has it in the fields (C is behind Ceres; S not visible). Dots and line over VIII reverse not noted in references but visible here.

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20 minutes ago, Marsyas Mike said:

Very interesting, @David Atherton.  A while back I chanced on what I think is one of these Asia Minor Vespasians, this an as-sized AE.  I had some trouble attributing it as RIC 1498 and 1499 have the same description on OCRE.

Vespasian-EphesusasCeresJun2022(0).jpg.d7ecd7903209962067f0460c5762fbed.jpg

Vespasian  Æ Large (As?) (77-78 A.D.) Ephesus / Asia Minor Mint  [IMP CAESAR VESPA]SIAN  AVGVS[TVS], laureate head right / [PONT MAX TR PO]T P P · COS · VIII [CENS], [S] C in fields, Ceres seated left, holding two corn-ears and torch. RPC II 1472; RIC II 1498/1499. (11.99 grams / 28 x 26 mm) eBay June 2022 

Notes:  OCRE list RIC 1498 and RIC 1499 with identical descriptions but no examples for either; RPC Online references RIC 1498 only and Kraay 3.  RPC has single example with SC in exergue; this one has it in the fields (C is behind Ceres; S not visible). Dots and line over VIII reverse not noted in references but visible here.

Outstanding rarity! Yours is RIC 1499 with S C in field. 1498 is S C in exergue. Frequency rating R3 (unique)!

OCRE is riddled with such mistakes ... it's always wise to check the published volumes.

Edited by David Atherton
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Nice coin!

 

Here's a Domitia from Ephesos

normal_R658_Domitia_fac.jpg.9601c5a38492ffab815861722cf13172.jpg

Domitia
Ionia, Ephesus
Cistophorus (AD 82-96).
Obv.: DOMITIA AVGVSTA, Draped bust right.
Rev.: VENVS AVG, Venus standing right, back facing, leaning upon column to left, holding helmet and sceptre.
Ag, 10.39g, 26mm
Ref.: RIC² 847 (Domitian); RPC II 870.

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