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The first and last issue of Caligula’s denarii


John060167

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Hi all, 

 

Two newer pickups I’d like to share-both Caligula denarii!

 

The first one:

Caligula (r. 37-41)

AR denarius, 18.5mm, 3.62g, 6h

RIC I 2

struck after 18 March, 37ad-Lugdunum mint. First emission

Obv: C CAESAR AVG GERM PM TR POT COS; bare head of caligula right

Rev: Radiate head of Divus Augustus flanked by two stars4320098A-1F31-43E3-ABFD-D844216F578E.jpeg.ca3836a4c8bf3037b9a3e833dddea472.jpeg

C0C35E7A-DB43-48EB-9FC9-E87F819E15FA.jpeg.7f2989a3059a2235a66f7c0ede2e9216.jpeg889F118A-57A9-474E-B0F4-45D62239BC38.jpeg.fd821bad7210a73e381fa3905aa49a22.jpeg

The second:

Caligula (r. 37-41)

AR denarius, 17.5mm, 3.41g, 4h

Unpublished in RIC

struck 41, Lugdunum mint 

Obv: C CAESAR AVG PON M TR POT IIII COS IIII; laureate head of Caligula right

Rev: SPQR PP OBCS in three lines within oak wreath

ECAAFB58-9056-4EA7-B393-9C0770D54D4E.jpeg.6d477d7f2048f2937f565d346bfed6b3.jpeg

 

69D0B6C4-562C-4A4A-8F75-1F8680226EA4.jpeg.9c9d49425b28add9b046803a1bbc19ec.jpeg90B229B8-B04B-4043-8CE3-A2DD52527C86.jpeg.696bfa02cf11e2f79fb6ce0ab8406043.jpeg

 

What makes this pair special is that they are Caligula’s first and last issue denarii, respectively! After Caligula ascended the throne in 37, the first issue he made depicts his great grandfather Augustus,  advertising his legitimacy. The first coin above is an example of this type. Advertising his blue blooded heritage would be a trend in his coinage-of the precious metal issues he made, Augustus, Agrippina (his mother) and Germanicus(his father) are depicted. It was important to do this since he otherwise lacked military/political accomplishments, unlike his predecessors.

Upon his accension, Caligula also recieved the corona civica for “having saved the people”, presumably from Tiberius’ tyranny. This was put on Caligula’s silver coinage in both 40 and 41. The corona civica reverse types are the rarest reverse type of Caligula’s denarii. The issues from 40ad are cataloged as RIC I 28, and differ from the much rarer 41ad issue by only the TR POT & COS year. The issue from 40 is TR POT III COS III, and from 41 is TR POT IIII COS IIII. These 41ad issues would be his last, as on 24 January 41, Caligula was assasinated. Due to how early in the year he was assassinated, not many issues from 41ad are known,  RIC only catalogued two reverse types in silver. The rest, including the coin I have, are unpublished. Afterall, the mint did not have so much time to make 41ad dies, and they legends especially in the TR POT & COS portions seem quite sloppy-it makes me wonder if instead of making fresh dies, they used dies from 40ad and just added an extra I ?

 

Anyway, truly fortunate to have added these two to my collection, my julio claudian set is growing! 😋

Do you have any coins you believe are relevant somehow? Lets see that coin porn! 😉

Cheers!

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2 hours ago, ominus1 said:
What is a casting bubble?

For the first coin, that was also my first thought. But I think that you can classify it as an original, with some porosity, when you hold it in hand 🙂
It is ex CNG 2004 and 2023.

3 hours ago, John060167 said:

What makes this pair special is that they are Caligula’s first and last issue denarii, respectively! After Caligula ascended the throne in 37, the first issue he made depicts his great grandfather Augustus,  advertising his legitimacy. The first coin above is an example of this type. Advertising his blue blooded heritage would be a trend in his coinage-of the precious metal issues he made, Augustus, Agrippina (his mother) and Germanicus(his father) are depicted. It was important to do this since he otherwise lacked military/political accomplishments, unlike his predecessors.

Upon his accension, Caligula also recieved the corona civica for “having saved the people”, presumably from Tiberius’ tyranny. This was put on Caligula’s silver coinage in both 40 and 41. The corona civica reverse types are the rarest reverse type of Caligula’s denarii. The issues from 40ad are cataloged as RIC I 28, and differ from the much rarer 41ad issue by only the TR POT & COS year. The issue from 40 is TR POT III COS III, and from 41 is TR POT IIII COS IIII. These 41ad issues would be his last, as on 24 January 41, Caligula was assasinated. Due to how early in the year he was assassinated, not many issues from 41ad are known,  RIC only catalogued two reverse types in silver. The rest, including the coin I have, are unpublished. Afterall, the mint did not have so much time to make 41ad dies, and they legends especially in the TR POT & COS portions seem quite sloppy-it makes me wonder if instead of making fresh dies, they used dies from 40ad and just added an extra I ?

Great explanation and context! 😊  Impressive coins

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2 hours ago, Kali said:

Impressive, wonderful additions.

thanks!

 

1 hour ago, Salomons Cat said:

For the first coin, that was also my first thought. But I think that you can classify it as an original, with some porosity, when you hold it in hand 🙂
It is ex CNG 2004 and 2023.

Great explanation and context! 😊  Impressive coins

Ahh, I was unsure what the reply meant…yeah, I believe it is just corrosion, not casting bubbles.

 

Cheers!

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