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Denomination Dilemma

David Atherton

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The coins struck for Domitian as Caesar can have quite stylish portraits, especially those struck under Titus. My latest addition isn't rare per say, but was cheap and came with an above average portrait. Some of you can probably tell from the distinctive dealer's photo below where it came from!



Domitian as Caesar [Titus]

Æ Dupondius/As, 10.95g
Rome mint, 80-81 AD
Obv: CAES DIVI VESP F DOMITIAN COS VII; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: S C in field; Minerva stg. l., with thunderbolt and spear; shield at her side
RIC 347 (C). BMC 245. BNC 255.
Acquired from Incitatus Coins, July 2022.

The dupondii and asses struck for Domitian Caesar under Vespasian and Titus at times can be difficult to differentiate. Both used the same reverse types and laureate portraits. Despite this coin's heavier weight, the copper colour and smaller flan size suggests this piece was intended to circulate as an as. The Minerva reverse hints early on at Domitian's unwavering devotion to the goddess and demonstrates that he had quite a bit of influence regarding his coin's reverse types.

Thanks for looking!

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That’s a great Caesar Domitian issue! You can start to see his distinctive look (taller and more narrow head) already vs looking like a copy/paste of Titus. 

Here’s my version where he looks indistinguishable from his brother, and no Minerva either! 


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2 hours ago, David Atherton said:

Some of you can probably tell from the distinctive dealer's photo below where it came from!

I’ve bought a few times from him and always wondered why almost all his coins have this copper patina ( or non patina ?) Does he give them an electrolysis bath before selling them ???

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