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Research Coins: Feature Auction


Nicopolis’ Boundary Marked

CNG 111, Lot: 643. Estimate $1000.
Sold for $1600. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

The Triumvirs. Octavian. Autumn 30-summer 29 BC. AR Denarius (18.5mm, 4.06 g, 7h). Italian (Rome?) mint. Laureate head of Apollo of Actium right, with features resembling Octavian / Octavian, as city founder, veiled and wearing priestly robes, plowing right with yoke of oxen, holding whip in outstretched left hand and plow-handle in right. CRI 424; RIC I 272; RSC 117. Good VF, lightly toned, slightly off center, a few light scratches, small test cut at reverse edge. Dies of artistic merit.

This issue refers to the foundation of Nicopolis in Epiros by Octavian during the Actian campaign. This scene, in which the founder is plowing with oxen, refers to the Roman custom of fixing a boundary for a new city by marking it with a pomerium, or sacred furrow.