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Research Coins: Electronic Auction

432, Lot: 279. Estimate $300.
Sold for $1300. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

The Triumvirs. Mark Antony and Octavian. Autumn 41 BC. AR Denarius (18mm, 3.88 g, 6h). Military mint traveling with Antony in Syria(?). Bare head of Mark Antony right / Bare head of Octavian right, with slight beard. Crawford 528/3; CRI 251; Sydenham 1194; RSC 2 var. (without slight beard for Octavian); RBW –. Good VF, lightly toned, weakly struck in areas, scrapes and cuts (or banker’s marks) on Antony’s portrait.

From the Andrew McCabe Collection. Ex Classical Numismatic Group Electronic Auction 347 (25 March 2015), lot 484; Aureo & Calicó 264 (11 December 2014), lot 63; Künker 124 (16 March 2007), lot 8548.

Not to be confused with the very common Barbatus Antony & Octavian type, the rarity of RRC 528/3 in decent condition can be illustrated by the type NOT being illustrated in RRC, presumably due to Michael Crawford not being able to locate a sufficently complete specimen without significant weakness or die breaks. RRC cites a British Museum example; there are several in the museum and all have issues with die breaks or flatness. A check of the usual auction databases show this coin to be perhaps the best preserved example, in terms of being centered and a complete strike, with fully struck-up portraits and very little wear, though evidently there are die breaks and a banker’s mark on the obverse. [Andrew McCabe]