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Emperor Caracalla, Silver Denarius, Rome Mint, Virtus AD 203

Denomination: Silver denarius

Period: Imperial Roman

Date: AD 203

Origin: Rome mint

Condition: EF 

Obverse: Laureate and draped bust, right ANTONINVS PIVS AVG

Reverse: Virtus standing left holding Victory and spear, VIRTVS AVGG

Size and Weight: 18mm, 3.21g

References: Spink 6903

Features and Provenance: Caracalla reigned as emperor from AD 198 -217. At birth he  was named Lucius Septmius Bassianus, being renamed Marcus Aurelius Antoninus at the age of seven. He became known as Caracalla due to the Gallic hooded tunic he constantly wore of the same name. He is considered one of the most bloodthirsty tyrants, allegedly killing: his wife (because he hated her), his brother Geta (to become sole emperor) followed by 20,000 of Geta's loyal subjects; he also hacked down a welcoming party whist a guest in Alexandria and then looted and plundered the city, all because they made a pointed comment about his brother's death! A true psychopath and probably the worst emperor Rome ever had.   

On a numismatic note, he debased the coinage in an attempt to pay his debts. By reducing the amount of silver and increasing the amount of copper in a coin he could effectively pocket the difference. At the beginning of his reign the silver content had been 55%, by the end it was 51%. He also introduced the antoninianus denomination, which was intended to be equivalent to two denarii, but with the silver content being so low it was worth only 1.5 denarii; this led to people hoarding the earlier coins because of the higher silver content, resulting in higher inflation and making matters worse.  



Condition Summary. This varies with the age of coin and there are grades in between

Uncirculated (U). As struck with no traces of wear

Extremely Fine (EF). Very slight traces of wear, all parts of legend etc present, visible and clear

Very Fine (VF). Some signs of wear on the higher parts of the relief, all parts of legend etc present, but maybe worn

Fine (F). Wear on the coin and parts of legend etc may be missing or not visible






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  • Product Code: 21030516
  • Availability: 1
  • £110.00

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