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Rare Aufidia with IVX Value Mark

432, Lot: 234. Estimate $500.
Sold for $1600. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

M. Aufidius Rusticus. 140 BC. AR Denarius (18mm, 3.83 g, 12h). Rome mint. Helmeted head of Roma right; IVX (mark of value) downward to left, RVS upward beneath chin / Jupiter driving galloping quadriga right, holding whip, scepter, and reins; M • (AVF) below horses; ROMA in partial frame in exergue. Crawford 227/1d; Sydenham 446a; Aufidia 1b; Type as RBW 955 (same dies). VF, toned. Very rare, none on CoinArchives with IVX downward.

From the Andrew McCabe Collection, purchased from Silbery Coins.

The value mark on these types are conventionally represented as XVI upwards or downwards, RRC 227/1a-c, but this coin has its value mark unconventionally backwards, i.e. IVX on RRC 227/1d. The Aufidia denarius has always been regarded as a great rarity, and the type is illustrated in most early twentieth century sales that selectively chose only high quality or rare coins. Collecting rarities of the dioscuri or biga or quadriga types is not as popular as it once was; the coins, however, remain very rare. [Andrew McCabe]