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Research Coins: Feature Auction


Tetricus II as Augustus

Sale: CNG 76, Lot: 1615. Estimate $200. 
Closing Date: Wednesday, 12 September 2007. 
Sold For $440. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

Tetricus II. Romano-Gallic Emperor, AD 273-274. Antoninianus (1.24 g, 6h). “Barbarous radiate”. [IMP C P]ES TETRICVS AVG, radiate and beardless head right / [PAX] AVG, Pax advancing left, holding [branch] and scepter. Unpublished. Good VF, brown patina. Extremely rare with AVG in legend.

There is uncertainty whether Tetricus I elevated his son, Tetricus II, from caesar to emperor in the final days of their reign in AD 274. A coin identified by Sutherland (”An Unpublished Coin in the Name of Tetricus II,” MN XI [1964]) purports to be of Tetricus II as Augustus, but the authenticity of the coin, or whether it is an blundered imitation, is debatable. The present coin is certainly from the huge issues of barbarous radiates that were struck in Gaul and Britain in the late 3rd century and later. Although the issuers of these coins attempted to imitate authentic issues, a large portion are erroneous, most commonly as hybrids of obverses of one of the Tetrici appearing with reverses of the other. While the present coin has the obverse bust of Tetricus II, the legend may have been confused with that of Tetricus I. Regardless, the appearance of AVG on any coin of Tetricus II, official or barbarous, is extremely rare.