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432, Lot: 219. Estimate $150.
Sold for $650. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

Anonymous. 211-208 BC (or later). Æ Semis (32mm, 21.78 g, 11h). Mint in Luceria. Laureate head of Saturn right; S (mark of value) horizontally below / Prow of galley right; [S] (mark of value) above, L to right, ROM[A] below. Crawford 97/10; Sydenham 304a; Type as RBW 407. VF, dark brown surfaces, areas of flat strike, some pitting. Extremely rare.

From the Andrew McCabe Collection.

Extremely rare and large flan rare L mintmark semis. In my paper “The Roman Bronze Coinage struck in Apulia and South East Italy in the Second Punic War;” Proceedings of the 2015 International Numismatic Congress – available on – I gave an overview of the disposition of bronze coinage using new research between mints at Luceria (part of L issues), field mint near Herdonia (remainder of L issues, as well as L-T issue), Canusium (P issue, CA issue, and lightweight asses), Brundisium (club, spearhead, and dolphin but see note on overstrike above), and Venusia (V, ROMA, H, Q). This RRC 97/10 semis is from the main Luceria mint and is considerably rarer than the later and lighter RRC 97/17 and 97/24 issues, both likely minted near Herdonia. This specific coin helped solve one acute dilemma on the L mintmarked issues – where to place the L Dextans and Quincunx types – at Luceria, or in the more southerly Herdonia area mint? Instinct places them with the more southerly location along with L-T mintmark bronzes having the Dioscuri on the reverse. However, the hair patterns on this 97/10 semis exactly match those on the Dextans and Quincunx, as does the engraving style and flan – these coins were all made from flat dies with good parallel strikes on flat flans. The semis is much rarer than the dextans, but less rare than the quincunx. [Andrew McCabe]