CNG Bidding Platform


Products and Services

Research Coins: Feature Auction

Sale: CNG 70, Lot: 630. Estimate $200. 
Closing Date: Wednesday, 21 September 2005. 
Sold For $190. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

[Roman Provincial] MACEDON, Thessalonica. Divus Julius Caesar and Octavian. 28-27 BC? Æ 22mm (10.38 g, 12h). Wreathed head of Julius Caesar right; c/m: ligate NK in circle / Bare head of Octavian right; D below. For coin: Touratsoglou, Thessaloniki, Em. 1, 27 (V5/R25); RPC I 1554; SNG ANS 824; for c/m: Howgego 625. Near VF, green patina. ($200)

The D has been interpreted as either a denomination mark (four assaria) or, more likely, a date - year four of the Actian era (28/7 BC). The ligate NK monogram has been generally accepted as a reference to Nero (Nerwn Kaisar). This is problematic considering that Thessalonica had abundant coinages issued under Claudius and Nero, such that countermarking these quite older coins would be unlikely. Touratsoglou (p. 105) follows Kraay's suggestion that the NK is an abbreviation for Nike (NiKh), and was applied to the coins during celebrations of the city's 50th anniversary of its grant of liberty by the Romans. All but two of the known specimens of this countermark occur on the coins of this first issue of Thessalonica, and the wear on the countermarks is nearly identical to that of the coins, suggesting that the countermarks could not have been applied very long after the coins entered circulation.