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Triton XXIII – Session Two – Greek Coinage Part II through Roman Imperial Coinage Part I

Lot nuber 711

Domitian. AD 81-96. AV Aureus (20mm, 7.61 g, 6h). “Germania Capta” commemorative. Rome mint. Struck 1 January-13 September AD 87.


Triton XXIII – Session Two – Greek Coinage Part II through Roman Imperial Coinage Part I
Lot: 711.
 Estimated: $ 15 000

Roman Imperial, Gold

Sold For $ 16 000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

Go to Live

Domitian. AD 81-96. AV Aureus (20mm, 7.61 g, 6h). “Germania Capta” commemorative. Rome mint. Struck 1 January-13 September AD 87. IMP CAES DOMIT AVG • GER • M P M • TR • P • VI, laureate head right / IMP • XIIII • COS XIII • CENS • P • P • P, German woman (as type of Germania Capta), naked to waist, wearing breeches, seated right on oblong shield, resting head on left hand in attitude of mourning, left elbow resting on left knee, right hand on shield; broken spear below; central dot. RIC II 513 (R2); Calicó 882 (same rev. die as illustration); cf. BMCRE p. 322, * (denarius); BN –; Biaggi –; Jameson –; Mazzini –; CNG 55, lot 1193 (same rev. die). In NGC encapsulation, 4282739-003, graded AU, Strike: 5/5, Surface: 3/5, Fine Style, edge filed. Very rare and artistic, missing from most major collections.

Ex Leu Numismatik 2 (11 May 2018), lot 248; CGB e-Monnaies (14 March 2017), lot 68.

Domitian pursued military actions in Germany and Dacia in an effort to shorten Rome's frontier with the barbarian tribes to the East. Success was only achieved by Domitian’s formidable successor, Trajan, yet such competent strategic efforts by Domitian run counter to the typical derogatory bias found in the ancient authors concerning Domitian's reign. This coin, commemorating Rome's "victory" over the Germans, suggests more hopeful speculation than any concrete reality. This magnificent reverse provides us with a record of part of a monument which has entirely disappeared, but of which fragments may survive at Rome beneath Regiones VII to X where Domitian’s architectural remains tend to cluster. Taken together with the Tropaeum Domitiani de Germanis monument, with its German male captive (Carradice, Coinage and finances in the reign of Domitian, BAR 178, 1983, pp. 24ff, 84.3), we can assemble the missing pieces into a standing marble trophy flanked by two seated captives, one male, bound and struggling, the other female, submissive and mourning for her lost liberty.

The final winners of all Triton XXIII lots will be determined at the live public sale that will be held on 14-15 January 2020. Triton XXIII – Session Two – Greek Coinage Part II through Roman Imperial Coinage Part I will be held Tuesday afternoon, 14 January 2020 beginning at 2:00 PM ET.

Winning bids are subject to a 20% buyer's fee for bids placed on this website and in person at the public auction, 22.50% for all others.