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Triton XXIII – Session Three – Roman Imperial Coinage Part II through World Coinage Part I

Lot nuber 723

Hadrian, with Divus Trajan. AD 117-138. AV Aureus (19.5mm, 7.42 g, 6h). Rome mint. Group 1, August-December AD 117.


Triton XXIII – Session Three – Roman Imperial Coinage Part II through World Coinage Part I
Lot: 723.
 Estimated: $ 75 000

Roman Imperial, Gold

Sold For $ 77 500. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

Go to Live

Hadrian, with Divus Trajan. AD 117-138. AV Aureus (19.5mm, 7.42 g, 6h). Rome mint. Group 1, August-December AD 117. IMP CAES TRAIAN HADRIANO OPT ΛVG G D PΛRT, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust of Hadrian right / DIVO • TRAIANO PATRI AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust of Divus Trajan right. RIC II.3 28 (same dies as illustration); RIC II 24a; Strack 10η; Calicó 1412 (same dies as illustration); BMCRE 44 (same dies); Biaggi 564 (same dies); Jameson –; Mazzini 2 (same dies). Lustrous, attractive light toning. With NGC Photo Certificate 4936619-005, graded MS, Strike: 5/5, Surface: 4/5, Fine Style. Two excellent high-relief portraits. One of the finest known.

From the Provence Collection.

Publius Aelius Hadrianus, born to an aristocratic family in Roman Spain, lost his biological parents by AD 86 and became the ward of the future emperor Trajan, another Spaniard. As a young man, Hadrian began a career in the Roman government and military, and in about AD 100 married Sabina, a favored great-niece of Trajan. He also cultivated the friendship of Trajan’s wife Plotina. Though widely regarded as a favorite for the succession, Hadrian was not formally named Caesar until Trajan fell fatally ill in Cilicia while returning from his great eastern campaign. It was not a universally popular choice and rumors immediately spread that Hadrian’s adoption was stage-managed by Plotina after Trajan had already died. Hadrian, serving as governor of Syria, took immediate action to secure the throne, inducing the eastern legions to acclaim him as emperor by means of a hefty bonus. He then wrote to the Senate declaring his accession a fait accompli, but requesting his formal designation as emperor along with the deification of Trajan. With no real alternative, both requests were readily granted. This spectacular aureus, pairing Hadrian’s portrait with that of the newly deified Trajan, was struck in Rome during the first months of the reign to mark both the accession of a new emperor and the creation of a new god, who is pointedly named as his father (DIVO TRAIANO PATRI AVG).

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 Three – Roman Imperial Coinage Part II through World Coinage Part II will be held Wednesday morning, 15 January 2020 beginning at 9:00 AM 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.