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Research Coins: Electronic Auction

 
2470333
247, Lot: 333. Estimate $100.
Sold for $425. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

Claudius II Gothicus. AD 268-270. Antoninianus (20mm, 3.09 g, 6h). Mediolanum (Milan), 2nd officina. 1st emission, AD 268. Radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind / Victory advancing right, holding wreath and palm; S. RIC 171; Venèra 9109-53. EF, slightly soft strike. Rare issue with early portrait type.


This coin is from the first issue of Claudius' coinage at Milan. It was here that he participated in the murder of Gallienus and was subsequently proclaimed emperor. The reverse type is a standard among the Roman coin iconography, reflecting a recent or pending (hopeful) victory of the emperor. In this instance, the reverse probably reflects Claudius' victory over the rebel Aureolus, who had seized Milan during the final year of Gallienus' reign. Claudius had tricked Aureolus into surrendering, saying he would spare the rebel's life, but then reneged and had Aureolus executed. Aureolus had made overtures to the Gallic emperor Postumus for aid, and struck coins for Postumus, which had a very unique portrait style. It has been noted that the earliest coins of Claudius struck at Milan have two distinct portrait styles, one of which is very similar to that on Aureolus' coins of Postumus. These very rare coins are thought to be the earliest, with their dies being engraved by Aureolus' mint officials, who must have been retained in their positions, at least long enough to make a few dies for the new emperor's coins. The present coin is one of these with the Aureolus-style portraits.