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The Colossus of Nero


Nero. AD 54-68. AV Aureus (18mm, 7.29 g, 8h). Rome mint. Struck circa AD 64-65. RIC I 46; Calicó 402; BMCRE 56-9; BN 202-5; Biaggi 221. Good VF, toned. Attractive small bust.

Ex Künker 153 (14 March 2009), lot 8627.

The reverse depicts Nero’s Colossus, a roughly 120-foot tall bronze statue of the emperor as Sol that was created for the vestibule of the Domus Aurea, or Golden House, the massive palace constructed by Nero after the fire of AD 64. Its memory was retained in the popular name of the amphitheater that went up close to the colossus – the Colosseum.