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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Sale: Triton V, Lot: 1944. Estimate $5000. 
Closing Date: Wednesday, 16 January 2002. 
Sold For $4000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

DOMITIAN. 81-96 AD. AV Aureus (7.52 gm). Struck 88-89 AD. DOMITIANVS AVGVSTVS, laureate head right / GERMANICVS COS XIIII, Germania seated right on shield, mourning; broken spear below. RIC II 127; BMCRE 143; BN 133; Cohen 148. Good VF. ($5000)

Domitian often displayed considerable political skill when dealing with matters of state. Such were the military actions in Germany and Dacia that he initiated and which can be justified as an effort to shorten Rome's frontier with the barbarian tribes to the East. In the end, they were unsuccessful and had to be resolved by the actions of his formidable successor, Trajan, yet competent decisions such as this preventative measure counter the typical derogatory bias found in the ancient authors concerning Domitian's reign. This coin, commemorating Rome's "victory" over the Germans, suggests more hopeful speculation than any concrete reality.