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Research Coins: Feature Auction

CNG 106, Lot: 851. Estimate $1000.
Sold for $807. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

Valentinian II. AD 375-392. AR Siliqua (18.5mm, 1.74 g, 12h). Festal issue. Siscia mint. Struck AD 377-378. Pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right / Large Christogram within wreath with large central jewel; SISCP. RIC IX –, but cf. 18 (Gratian; mintmark) and 19 (Valentinian II, but VOT/XV/MVLT/XX); RSC –. VF, find patina, hairline flan crack. Apparently unique and unpublished.

Based on the mintmark, this siliqua of Valentinian from the Siscia mint was struck as part of a festal issue commemorating the tenth regnal anniversary of Gratian and in anticipation of the fifteenth of Valens. While Valentinian, who had become emperor in AD 375, was included in the program of the anniversary issues for Valens – hence RIC IX 19 – the young emperor had not yet reached the regnal milestone of five years that normally began the issuance of such special issues. Thus, this siliqua, bearing the Christogram within the wreath on the reverse would provide an appropriate alternative for the Christian Valentinian, who (along with his mother) later became embroiled in the Arian controversy.