Domitian AR Denarius 85 CE (fourth Issue)
(20.00 mm 3.35 g)
Obv: IMP CAES DOMIT AVG – GERM P M TR P IIII, laureate head right, wearing aegis
Rev: IMP VIIII COS XI – CENS POT P P Minerva standing left, holding spear in right hand
Ref.: RIC II 339 (R2), RSC 180a, BMC 80
Ex: Michael Kelly Collection
Ex: Spink numismatic e-circular 1 Part 1 Ancient Coins Auction 20120 Lot 228 (part). February 13, 2020.
Purchased from Germania Inferior Numismatics on Vcoins February 22, 2020.
So this one has a bit of a story attached to it. A couple of weeks ago Spink held an auction that featured a number of coins from the Michael Kelly collection. I have seen some of these coins come to auction over the last year or so in auctions by Roma Numismatics.
This coin was a part of Lot 228 in the Spink auction. I bid on and lost the lot. Nine or so days later the coin was listed by one of my favourite dealers on Vcoins. A friend of my gave me the heads up that some coins of Domitian were listed. I saw this one and immediately bought it. After I bought it I started thinking that it was strange that 2 of these coins would show up 9 days apart. After some research I discovered that my coin was the Michael Kelly coin from the Spink auction! I was very excited by this because it meant that I took advantage of a second chance to land this coin.
Now, why is this coin a must have for me? Let us start with the coin itself. It is a very attractive coin with a very nice portrait. The figure of Minerva on the reverse has plenty of detail remaining. Another reason I wanted the coin concerns the reverse legend. Unlike the majority of these coins that have the CENS PP P legend, this coin has the much rarer CONS POT reverse. I am actively looking for coins with this reverse legend. They turn up rarely on the market.
This is another reason that this coin is special. Take another look at the portrait. It features the use of Aegis. This is rare on coins of Domitian. This is my second denarius of Domitian with Aegis. The other is RIC 336.
There are many reasons why I have gladly welcomed this coin into my collection.