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Research Coins: Feature Auction


Extremely Rare Bearded Head

CNG 103, Lot: 1149. Estimate $750.
Sold for $600. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

CELTIC, Trinovantes & Catuvellauni. Cunobelin. Circa AD 8-41. AR Unit (13mm, 1.31 g, 11h). Cunobelinus Spiky (Trinovantian W) type. Bearded head left with spiky hair; CAM-VL around / Victory seated right, holding cup; pellet-in-annulet to right, [CVNO in exergue]. De Jersey, Silver, type C4, dies A/1; Van Arsdell 2045-1; ABC 2855 variant; SCBC 303. Good VF, toned, slight porosity. Extremely rare.

Ex Geoff Cottam Collection (Spink 232, 2 December 2015), lot 392, purchased from Spink, February 2005.

Philip de Jersey, in his study of Cunobelin’s silver, noted the various Roman prototypes that the chieftain’s coins appear to copy. Here, the obverse resembles the famous ‘Vercingetorix’ portrait on denarii of L. Hostilius Saserna (cf. Crawford 448), while the reverse is adapted from that of the moneyer M. Cato (cf. Crawford 343 and 462).