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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Triton XV, Lot: 1539. Estimate $10000.
Sold for $8500. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

Caracalla. AD 198-217. Æ Sestertius (32mm, 21.08 g, 12h). Rome mint. Struck AD 213. M AVREL ANTONINVS PIVS AVG BRIT, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right / P M TR P XVI IMP II above, COS IIII P P/S C in two lines in exergue, Circus Maximus: the front consists of an arcade of arches and a large arch on right; just behind on left, driver and quadriga right on arch, uncertain objects left and right of spina, three quadrigae driving left, spectators in gallery; in background, on left, temple, colonnade of three tiers of arches, in which is a quadriga. RIC III 500a; Banti 46; BMCRE 251. Good VF, yellow and brown patina, minor roughness. Very rare.

Ex Freeman & Sear 15 (27 June 2008), lot 384; Peus 384 (11 February 2005), lot 713; Münzen und Medaillen 93 (16 December 2003), lot 218; Thilo-Schmidt Collection.

The Circus Maximus, perhaps the second greatest monument built for the benefit of Rome's citizens after the famed Flavian Amphitheatre (Colosseum), was restored by Trajan in AD 103. It is portrayed on this coin as seen from the Forum Boarium, and interestingly depicts the spina (the central area adorned with monuments and around which the chariots raced) at a right angle from its actual orientation.