RPC I, 5409

 

Image of specimen #21

 

Coin type
Volume I
Number 5409
Province Uncertain
Region Uncertain
City Uncertain
Reign Augustus
Person (obv.) Augustus (—)
Issue Coinage with Q
Obverse inscription
Obverse design bare head, r.
Reverse inscription Q
Reverse design fiscus, sella quaestor and hasta
Metal Bronze
Average diameter 27 mm
Axis 6, 11, 12
Reference AMNG 226–7; FITA 13–19
Specimens 77 (11 in the core collections)
Note On the identity of obv., see RPC I, p. 715. It has been thought that this issue is related to the coinage of the uncertain Cilician colony signed PRINCEPS FELIX (4082-3), as the portrait on both issues seems similar. Therefore, as the Princeps Felix portrait is considered here as Octavian/ Augustus, the same identification has been adopted for the Q coinage. These coins have in the past been considered as Macedonian, due to the reverse typology on 5409-10, which is similar to that found on the Aesillas coinage. But the hasta, which is an emblem of imperium, the money chest and the quaestor's chair of office are objects which symbolise the authority of Roman officials and they are found elsewhere, e.g., on the coinage of Pupius Rufus (919-23). They certainly denote a rank of quaestor propraetore (FITA, p. 16), as the spear could not be used normally by a quaestor who did not possess imperium. Grant assigned the Q issue to M. Acilius in 45/44 BC and supposed that he was the governor of Macedonia during the last year of Caesar's life. But that is just a guess. It should be noted that no specimen has turned up in Macedonia, but that two were bought in Beirut by H. Seyrig (5409/2-3). Therefore a Syrian origin was suggested in RPC I. Since the publication of RPC, four specimens have been recorded in Amasya Museum (S. Ireland, Greek, Roman and Byzantine Coins in the Amasya Museum (London, 2000), p. 53 nos. 2096-9). These, in addition to the two in Samsun and Amasra, indicate beyond any real doubt that the Q coins emanate from somewhere in northern Turkey. One halved piece was also found at Burgas, Bulgaria.
Correction Corrected coin-type (post publication)

Specimens of this coin type

Number Museum Bibliography
1     L: 1980,0403.1
2     P: Y 28658/2
3     P: Y 28658/3
4     P
5     B: 18217866, I-B
6     B: 18217860, 322/1876 FITA pl. II, 3
7     B: 18217875, 527/1912 Egger, Prowe coll., 2 June 1912, lot 473
8     O
9     Bern: 3768
10     C
11     NY
12     NY
13     Parma
14     McGill
15     McGill
16     Thiollier coll.
17     Thiollier coll.
18     RW
19     RW
20     RW
21     ✸ Private coll., Paris = CNG Triton XI, 8 Jan. 2008, lot 504
22     Collection Heynen 101
23     Auctiones AG, June 1975, lot 82
24     Sternberg XI, 1981, lot 565 = Cahn 60, 1928, lot 1316
25     Crédit Suisse Bern 1, 22 Apr. 1983, lot 273
26     G. Hirsch 156, 1987, lot 413
27     Samsun
28     Amasra S. Ireland - S. Atessogullari, in R. Ashton (ed.), Studies in Ancient Coinage from Turkey (London, 1996), p. 123, n0. 113.
29     CNG MBS 75, 23 May 2007, lot 833 = H. Schulman, Mabbott coll. I, 6 June 1969, lot 387 = Malter 34, 13 Dec. 1986, lot 341
30     Amasya: 2096
31     Amasya: 2097
32     Amasya: 2098
33 –74     See Coin Archives
75     halved piece from Aquae Calidae (Burgas, Bulgaria). SeeE.I.Paunov, From Koiné to Romanitas: TheNumismatic Evidence for the Roman Expansion and Settlement in Bulgaria inAntiquity (Moesia and Thrace, c. 146 BC – AD 98/117), unpublished PhDthesis, Cardiff University, p. 394
76     NSB Web Auction 11, 19 Feb. 2022, lot 1164
77     Boston: 66.906