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The Concord of Domitian and Titus

David Atherton

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My latest coin sports a fantastic portrait, and possibly a neat bit of insight into the fraternal relationship between Titus and Domitian on the reverse.




Domitian as Caesar [Titus]
Æ Dupondius, 14.12g
Rome mint, 80-81 AD
Obv: CAES DIVI VESP F DOMITIAN COS VII; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: CONCORDIA AVG; S C in exergue; Concordia std. l., with patera and cornucopiae
RIC 337 (C). BMC 239. BNC 247.
Acquired from eBay, June 2023. Formerly in NGC holder #4938480-029, grade VF.

A common Concordia type struck for Domitian Caesar under Titus after Vespasian's deification. According to H. Mattingly, Concordia here promises Domitian's 'loyal co-operation with his brother.' Suetonius would have us believe this public fraternal affection was a sham and Domitian did everything he could to plot against Titus. Dio goes so far as to say Domitian hastened Titus's death by having him packed in ice! All of this can be dismissed as nothing more than post-Domitianic gossip intended to blacken Domitian's name. The Flavian historian Brian Jones speculates the brother's relationship was one of 'mutual indifference and ignorance' due to their age and personality disparities. The numismatic evidence shows the two brothers at least put on a good public face.

In hand and newly freed from its slab.



Thank you for looking!

Edited by David Atherton
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52 minutes ago, Steppenfool said:

Great coin and write up, thanks for sharing. I am reading Pat Southern's "Domitian: Tragic Tyrant" right now, and they also conclude that there was probably no serious animosity between Titus and Domitian.

I love Southern's book ... although I ignore the chapter that delves into Domitian's psychology.

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6 minutes ago, David Atherton said:

I love Southern's book ... although I ignore the chapter that delves into Domitian's psychology.

I'm not that far yet, Titus has only just died! I bought Southern's book over Jones' book because it was apparently more readable. Do you think the Jones book is worthwhile in addition to this one?

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