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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Sale: CNG 70, Lot: 766. Estimate $1500. 
Closing Date: Wednesday, 21 September 2005. 
Sold For $2200. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

TRAJAN. 98-117 AD. Æ Sestertius (26.36 g, 6h). Struck 103 AD. Laureate head right, wearing aegis / The Circus Maximus: spina with obelisk of Augustus flanked by metae? and surrounded by colonnaded arcade; triumphal arch surmounted by quadriga and carceres at either end; terrace with statues below. RIC II 571; BMCRE 856; Cohen 546. Good Fine, brown patina, areas of light porosity. ($1500)

The Circus Maximus, perhaps the second greatest monument built for the benefit of Rome's citizens after the famed Flavian Amphitheatre (Colosseum), was restored by Trajan in 103. It is portrayed on this coin as seen from the Forum Boarium, and interestingly depicts the spina (the central area adorned with monuments and around which the chariots raced) at a right angle from its actual orientation.