Jump to content

Faustina Friday – An Imitative Denarius


Recommended Posts

image.png.e60d1833b480d5b32a5d1f9c914f128e.png

Friday felicitations, fellow Faustina fanatics! I hope you have a wonderful weekend. This week, I'm going to post an imitative denarius of Faustina the Younger.

FaustinaJrHILARITASdenariustype10hairstyleimitative.jpg.934f0a2685c894a83e79fa94953e4069.jpg

Faustina II, 147-175 CE.
Plated imitative Roman denarius, 2.75 g, 17.5 mm, 6 h.
Unknown mint, after 169 CE.
Obv: FAVSTINA AVGVSTA, bare-headed and draped bust, right (Beckmann Type 10 hairstyle).
Rev: HILARITAS, Hilaritas stand left, holding long palm branch and cornucopiae.
Refs: cf. RIC 686; cf. BMCRE 100.


There are several features of this coin that point to it being an imitative issue or forgery:

  • It is plated; you can see several spots on both obverse and reverse where its silver-colored plating has chipped off, revealing a patinated copper core.
  • It is underweight.
  • The portrait style is unofficial; this is best seen by comparing it to genuine examples, below.
  • The reverse type dates to 166 CE but the obverse depicts the empress in the Type 10 hairstyle of 169-175 CE, indicating the obverse and reverse dies were copied from two separate exemplars.

The official denarii of the HILARITAS issue appear with two bust styles, one with the Type 7 hairstyle and one with the Type 9 hairstyle. Although both of these bust types appear to have been introduced simultaneously following the birth of twins on 31 August 161, the Type 9 hairstyle appears more frequently on coins issued later in the 160s than the Type 7 hairstyle.
 

FaustinaJrHILARITASdenariuspearls.jpg.6efd9f6fd5c0ea630cf55373173a2bac.jpg

Faustina II, 147-175 CE.
Roman AR denarius, 2.88 g, 16.5 mm, 5 h.
Rome, 166 CE.
Obv: FAVSTINA AVGVSTA, draped bust of Faustina II, right (Beckmann type 7 coiffure).
Rev: HILARITAS, Hilaritas standing left, holding long palm-branch in right hand and cornucopia in left hand.
Refs: RIC 686 var.; BMCRE 101-102; RSC 111a; RCV 5254; CRE 182; MIR 15-4/10b.

FaustinaJrHILARITASdenarius.jpg.1f4e02d92fd05391c2699b37306730c6.jpg

Faustina II, 147-175 CE.
Roman AR denarius, 3.40 g, 17.4 mm, 5 h.
Rome, 166 CE.
Obv: FAVSTINA AVGVSTA, draped bust of Faustina II, right (Beckmann type 9 hairstyle).
Rev: HILARITAS, Hilaritas standing left, holding long palm-branch in right hand and cornucopia in left hand.
Refs: RIC 686; BMCRE 100; RSC 111; RCV 5254; CRE 182.


The purpose of this imitative coin was likely to defraud the populace (counterfeit), although it's possible that it served as semi-official coinage in areas of the empire where denarii may have been in short supply, fulfilling a need in the local economy.

Do you have any imitative or fouree issues of Faustina the Younger? Let's see them! As always, feel free to post comments, coins, or anything you feel is relevant!

  • Like 11
  • Gasp 1
  • Heart Eyes 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Very interesting, RC.  Indeed, a while back I bought a Faustina II denarius I was hoping just had some crud on it (seller's photos were not clear).  But no, it is a giant pit, turned green, and so a base metal core.  But rather than a limes, it sure seems to be a fourree - plated rather than debased. 

FaustinaII-DenFourreeAltarAug2022(0a).jpg.efb877b507f5b28f9af0f7cfa22e3451.jpg

Faustina II    Fourrée Denarius (176-180 A.D.) 4th post. issue Rome Mint DIVA FAVSTINA PIA, bare-headed, draped bust right / CONSECRATIO, altar-enclosure with door in front and antefixae ("horns" per RIC) on corners. RIC III Marcus Aurelius 746; BMCRE 725-27; Cohen 75. (2.58 grams / 17 x 16 mm) eBay Aug. 2022 $12.00

Here's a close-up of the pit: 

FaustinaII-DenFourreeAltarAug2022(0det).jpg.01a1f015c577016e8b3fa1d158a2628a.jpg

 

 

  • Like 3
  • Clap 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

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.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...