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My new Sicilian friend


SteveJBrinkman

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A few days ago I received a coin I acquired in the NAC 138 sale, lot 379, an early Roman denarius with the CVAR monogram, struck at a mint in Sicily.  The timing of 209-208 B.C. excludes the possibility that the moneyer was the 215 BC consul by that name, killed at the battle of Cannae, so it is perhaps a younger relative of his according to Crawford.  This issue and the issue with CAL monogram are thought to be the earliest denarius issues signed by a moneyer.  It is remarkable that both are attributed to Sicily rather than Rome.

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Crawford 74/1; 4.24 g;  Nice obverse iridescence.

This is a relatively scarce issue.  Schaefer cites 6 obverse and 6 reverse dies.

 

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1 minute ago, AETHER said:

Amazing style. Might as well be Greek! Grats.

I agree.  All of the Sicilian issues, Crawford 67-80 are among the most beautifully rendered in my opinion.  Even the more "primitive" rrc 68 (spike) and rrc 80 (dolphin) are uniquely pleasing in their own way.

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  • 1 month later...

Just for the record: Cannae was in 216 (August 2 or July 2, depending on how you interpret the calendar) as was Varro's consulship . The consul Aemilius Paullus was killed at Cannae, Varro survived and had other commands throughout the war. He remained in command for the remainder of the year, mostly based at Canusium. Crawford probably attributes it to a younger relative because Varro had no command in Sicily and issuing money was generally done by minor magistrates.

Great coin.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 8/2/2023 at 6:08 PM, Edward Blume-Poulton said:

Just for the record: Cannae was in 216 (August 2 or July 2, depending on how you interpret the calendar) as was Varro's consulship . The consul Aemilius Paullus was killed at Cannae, Varro survived and had other commands throughout the war. He remained in command for the remainder of the year, mostly based at Canusium. Crawford probably attributes it to a younger relative because Varro had no command in Sicily and issuing money was generally done by minor magistrates.

Great coin.

I stand corrected on all counts.  Thanks @Edward Blume-Poulton

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