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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Triton XIV, Lot: 726. Estimate $1000.
Sold for $950. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

Antoninus Pius. AD 138-161. Æ As (23mm, 11.26 g, 5h). Rome mint (or mint in Britain?). Struck AD 154-155. [ANTONINVS] AVG PIVS P P TR P XVIII, laureate head right / BRITANNIA COS IIII, S C in exergue, Britannia seated left on rock, propping head on right hand and left hand on rock, in attitude of mourning; large round shield with central spike and transverse vexillum projecting upwards to left. RIC III 934; Strack 1102; SCBC 646; BMCRE 1971. Near EF, dark green patina, traces of deposits, minor porosity.

From the Collection of a Northern California Gentleman.

There is some debate as to whether or not the BRITANNIA asses of Antoninus Pius were struck in the Roman province of Britannia itself. In the 45th edition, 2010 of Standard Catalogue of British Coins, p. 68, 646 note, we read “Many specimens of this type...have been found in significant quantities on Romano-British sites, notably in Coventina’s Well at Carrawburgh fort on Hadrian’s Wall, raising the interesting possibility that they may have been issued from a temporary mint in Britain. The style of the engraving is quite regular, indicating that even if locally produced these coins would have been struck from normal Roman dies brought to Britain especially for this purpose.”