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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Sale: CNG 64, Lot: 11. Estimate $300. 
Closing Date: Wednesday, 24 September 2003. 
Sold For $300. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

CELTIC, Danube Region. The Eraviscii. Circa 65-50 BC. AR Denarius (3.46 gm). Diademed head of Venus right / IRAVSCI, griffin flying right. CCCBM I 273; De la Tour 10078. Toned VF. ($300)

The obverse is taken from a Roman Republican denarius of C. Naevius Balbus (Crawford 382), the reverse one of L. Papius (Crawford 384). Other coins from this series copy denarii of Cn. Lentulus (Crawford 393) and C. Postumius (Crawford 394). These prototypes all date between 80 and 74 BC. The implication is that there was a vast influx of Roman silver into the Balkans in the 70s and 60s BC. Crawford, in Coinage & Money Under the Roman Republic, attributes this influx to the expansion of the slave trade into the Balkans at this period. The east had been pacified by Pompey, eliminating the principal source of slaves, and incursions into Gaul had not yet begun in earnest, leaving the Balkans to supply a new source of manpower.