Reading and dating roman imperial coins

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Few reverses contain inscriptions, so look for certain attributes to correctly identify the figures.For example, Jupiter (Zeus in the Greek tradition) holds a lightning bolt; Justice holds scales. However, you can determine the year that a particular coin was struck using two methods.The eras in use at the various cities owed their origin to various circumstances. C., after the defeat of Tigranes Pompey entered Syria. THE CAESAREAN ERA dates from the victory of Caesar over Pompey at Pharsalia, Aug. On the series of Ptolemaic coins commencing with the era of Arsino II, A-Ω (= 1-24) and AA-ΩΩ (= 25-48), etc., are not, dates but sequence letters.The local era of a city or province will often date from an important event in the history of the city, district, or province. The Ephesian cistophori bear dates reckoned from this era. For the various Cyprian and Phoenician methods of dating coins, the student should consult the volumes of the British Museum Catalogue, Cyprus and Phoenicia.Even for people like me who the whole dance and the chase and the thrill of the new, there will be points when you really just want to take a step back from it for a while and catch your breath and let your ego recover from the beatings that tend to come with it.It was not until after the age of Alexander that placing dates upon coins in the form of numerals became common.

Most Roman coins feature a portrait of a Roman emperor, or a member of his family, on the obverse (front).It may have been derived from an Egyptian hieroglyph. Greek dates are also sometimes written out or abbreviated. The start date of eras above and others are listed below: If the era started before the common era (BC or BCE), to determine the common era (AD or CE) date, subtract the era start year from the date on the coin.Some examples follow (these are ordinal numbers): L, ETOVC, or ΕΤΟΥΣ = of the year∆ΕΥΤΕΡΟΥ = 2ndΤΡΙΤΟΥ = 3rdΤΕΤΑΡΤΟΥ = 4thΠΕΜΠΤΟΥ = 5thΕΚΤΟΥ = 6thΕΒ∆ΟΜΟΥ = 7thΟΓ∆ΟΟΥ = 8thΕΝΑΤΟΥ, ΕΤ ΕΝΑΤ, ΕΝΑ, ΕΝ, ΕΤ Θ = 9th∆ΕΚΑΤΟΥ, ∆Ε ∆ΕΚΑΤ, ∆ΕΚΑ = 10thΕΝ∆ΕΚΑΤΟΥ = 11th∆Ω∆ΕΚΑΤΟΥ, ∆Ω∆ΕΚΑΤ, ∆Ω∆ΕΚ = 12thΤΡΙCΚΑΙ∆ΕΚΑ, ΤΡΙCΚΑΙ = 13thΕΝΝΕΑΚ∆ = 19th The dates above may not be "proper" Greek. THE ACTIAN ERA dates from the victory of Caesar over Antony at Actium in B. If the result is less than zero, determine the date before the common era (BC or BCE) by subtracting the date on the coin from the era start year and then adding one.The events that were the origin of many local eras are unknown. Sometimes the exact year from which an era started is also uncertain.

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