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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Sale: Triton IX, Lot: 1450. Estimate $3000. 
Closing Date: Monday, 9 January 2006. 
Sold For $2850. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

PLOTINA. Augusta, circa 105-117 AD. Æ Sestertius (27.10 g, 6h). Struck circa 112 AD. PLOTINA AVG IMP TRAIANI, draped bust right, hair elaborately dressed in two tiers over brow, above which is a stephane, and elaborately waved at the back, falling down her neck in plait / FIDES AVGVST, S C across field, Fides standing right, holding grain ears in right hand, basket of fruits in left. RIC II 740 (Trajan); Strack 441 (Trajan); Banti 1; BMCRE 1080 (Trajan); Cohen 12. Near VF, brown patina with a few spots of green and red, fields smoothed. Boldly struck obverse with a strong portrait. Exceptional for this issue. ($3000)

From the John F. Sullivan Collection. Ex Triton IV (15 December 2000), lot 538; Rasmussen 367 (6 October 1977), lot 237 (15,800 DM hammer).

Pompeia Plotina, born at Nemausus in about 70, married Trajan before he became emperor. She did not receive recognition on the coinage until 112, the year of family evocation for the emperor, Traianus Maior, Nerva, Marciana, and Matidia. Childless, she was admired for the simplicity, dignity, fidelity, and virtue that she mixed with her beauty. Although she refused the title Augusta in 100, she finally accepted it in 105. Plotina was present at the death of Trajan in Cilicia in 117 and facilitated the adoption of Hadrian as his successor. Hadrian, in turn, honored her on coins in 117-118, and consecrated her upon her death in 121.