|Roman Republican Coins and Books by Andrew McCabe
Library of Roman Republican Numismatics and History An Illustrated Guide
Library of Roman Republican Numismatics and History An Illustrated Guide
Library of Roman Republican Numismatics and History
This a pictorial view of a Library on Roman Republican Numismatics and History, which has been assembled over some years to support the Ahala Collection of Roman Republican Coins. As with most such libraries, the book collection started with core reference works such as Crawford and the Seaby-Sear handbooks, and then developed through the piecemeal addition of specialist reference works and the occasional general work on coins or history. Some of the most important antiquarian volumes, such as Patin's edit of Fulvio Orsini and Antonio Agostini, were early acquisitions. Contrasting with the experience of many coin collectors whose personal libraries contain a fortuitous mixture of books, this piecemeal approach came to an abrupt end about ten years ago. Acquisitions have become increasingly systematic. The aim has not been to form themost comprehensive collection of literature on the subject, but to form an especially coherent and focused library on Roman Republican numismatics. Sometimes this meant choosing not to buy a second-rate books that might do nothing except consume shelf space. In this regard, some published museum collections containing Republican coins are of little importance, some introductory handbooks are little more than poor copies of better books, and some auction catalogues containing Republican coins contain nothing of note and deserve to go to recycling. Just as with the Ahala collection of Republican coins, a constant process of focusing and upgrading applies. It is a curated library. Special attention has been given in recent years to filling gaps considered critical to the story of Republican numismatics. For example until recently Vaillant's book on Republican coinage was missing, as were the rarer second and third volumes of Bahrfeldt's commentary on Babelon. These, in addition to other important works, were acquired in the Kolbe Kreindler numismatic literature sale in 2012. Hoopers Ancient Measures, an English language equivalent of Bude, the world's first numismatic treatise, was a lucky find in an antiquarian bookseller, but knowledge creates such luck. Ancient coin auction catalogues are a notoriously difficult area to achieve good coverage of. The collection has been well filled with the assistance of John Spring's catalogue for initial guidance, and of the RBW library and the Fitzwilliam library for inspection copies. I'm also grateful to both RBW and to Professor Buttrey at the Fitzwilliam for giving me considerable direct assistance in infilling gaps in my library.
All books in the library are intended for regular use. There are no fragile volumes. Volumes bought fragile, for example the Kreindler copy of Vaillant, have been sturdily rebound or repaired, where possible in a manner consistent with their era. These books are meant for reading.
I start with some general views of the library and working areas. The library is broadly divided into two areas, numismatics and history, and occupies the south wall of a very long gallery with north facing windows that avoids that sunlight damages the books. The pictures give the impression of a relatively narrow room, but that is an illusion due to its great length. It is broad and spacious with plenty of room to work and read, and I plan in time to add reading chairs, book tables, stands and so on, but not computing facilities, as the intent is that this be always a quiet room dedicated only to the organisation of knowledge and the selection of and reading of books.
The five columns of shelves that include a corner section are dedicated to numismatics. There is a strong emphasis on Roman Republican coinage, but other classic works and standard references on all areas of ancient numismatics are also included, to provide context to the Roman Republican period, and for a general understanding of ancient numismatics. Books are broadly categorised into standard and fundamental references, monographs, festchrifts and other collected works, general works, dictionaries or bibliographies and similar references, technical studies, archaeological works, museum collections, antiquarian books, and auction catalogues. A further four columns of shelves are dedicated to works on ancient history, and to general reference works such as Britannica that would be of use to any historical research student. As well as standard works such as Loeb translations, Cambridge Ancient History, Mommsen, Gibbon etc., the history section also includes antiquarian works that are heavily illustrated with ancient coins, lavishly illustrated coffee-table books, historical monographs, guide books to ancient cities or archaeological sites, and just great reads ranging from Homer to Cavafy to Steven Saylor to Mary Beard. The final column of shelving, not shown in enlargements, are personal books unrelated to the ancient world, including modern novels and other hobby interests such as classic airliners.
Just around the corner from the mirrored and marbled dresser (inherited from my grandmother, born 1895) at the west end of the library is a well-lit study room with a grey leather desk whose surface colour is ideal for coin photography background, and practical shelving (not illustrated) with our familiar tools of the trade, from loupes to flips to camera lenses to paper guillotines, as well as some well-battered second copies of standard reference works.
Books on Roman Republican Numismatics
I show the bookcases below in some approximate order of relative importance based on the numismatic, literary and bibliographical attractiveness and authority. This is inevitably arbitrary, but few would argue that my bookshelf containing Crawford and Grueber must come first, whilst a shelf with an illustrated guide to coin collecting should come near last. Shelves containing books which are fundamental to Republican numismatics such as Mommsen must come near the top, as must fundamental antiquarian volumes such as Vaillant or Orsini, yet it is important also to recognise the importance of general titles by great numismatists, hence works by Kent & Hirmer, Sutherland, Mattingly and so on, although on general subjects, feature above those on highly specialist subjects such as Martini on Imperatorial bronzes. So there is a scheme, a method in the ordering, although I would not like to try and justify every placement.
Essentials: Babelon Monnaies de la République Romaine, Grueber British Museum Catalogue BMCRR, Sydenham Coinage of the Roman Republic CRR, Crawford Roman Republican Coinage RRC, Crawford Coin Hoards RRCH, Crawford Coins and Money, Amandry Burnett and Ripolles Roman Provincial Coinage RPC, Rutter Historia Numorum Italy HNI, Sear Imperators HCRI, Vecchi Italian Cast Coinage ICC, Seaby-Sear Roman Silver Coins RSC, Seaby-Sear Roman Coins RCV, Andrew McCabe's website.
Fundamentals: Borghesi Oeuvres Numismatique, Riccio Monete di Famiglie, Cohen Monnaies de la République Romaine, Mommsen Histoire de la Monnaie Romaine with Duc de Blacas, Bahrfeldt Nachträge, Bahrfeldt Gold, Santini, Alföldi Caesar, Grant From Imperium to Auctoritas FITA, Sydenham Aes Grave, Thomsen Early Roman Coinage ERC
Finest General Works on Ancient Coins: Sutherland Roman Coins, Burnett, Carradice & Price, Butcher on Roman, Provincial and Greek Coinage, Milne on Greek and Roman Coins, Metcalf Oxford Handbook of Greek and Roman Coinage, Seltman Greek Coins, Mattingly Roman Coins, Penguin Greek Coins, Carson Principal Coins of the Romans, Ward Greek Coins and their Parent Cities, Hoberman The Art of Coins and their Photography, Seltman Masterpieces of Greek Coinage, Head Historia Numorum, von Reden Money in Classical Antiquity, Harris Monetary System of Greeks and Romans, Hill Historical Roman Coins, Grant Roman Imperial Money. There is a natural continuation from this group to the next shelf:
Most Important General and Period-Specific Works including those on economic and social history relevant to the use of coinage: Duncan-Jones Money and Government, Marchetti Deuxième Guerre Punique, Mattern-Parkes Ancient Mediterranean World, Fronda Between Rome and Carthage, Paul & Ierardi Roman Coins and Public Life, Gullbekk Money that changed the World, Meadows and Shipton Early Money in Ancient Greece, Kay Rome's Economic Revolution, Wallace-Hadrill Rome's Cultural Revolution, Crawford Sources for Ancient History, Howgego Ancient History from Coins, Casey Understanding Ancient Coins, Sutherland Coinage in Imperial Policy, Peruzzi Money in Early Rome, Sutherland Roman Imperial Coinage RIC I, Catalli Monete dell'Italia Antica, Catalli Monetazione Romana Reppublicana, Clain-Steffanelli Numismatic Bibliography, Babelon Ancient Numismatics and its History, Bassoli Antiquaran Books on Coins and Medals, Lehfeldt Money, Everyman Atlas Ancient and Classical Geography, Grant Roman History from Coins, Seaby RSC1, Mattingly Santalucia Lo-Cascio Andreau Burnett Crawford Giovannini Knapp in Annali 29 1982, Hollstein Roman Republican Moneyers 78-50BC, Burnett Taliercio-Mensitieri Vitale Monetazione Romano Campana.
Important Large-Format Quarto Works: Russo and de Falco RBW Collection, Witschonke and van Alfen Essays Russo (both with substantial contributions by McCabe), Woytek Arma et Nummi, Belloni Milan collection, Crawford Burnett Roman Coinage in the Late Republic, SNG BM Spain, SNG France BNF Italy, Translatio Nummorum, Kraay Kent Hirmer Greek and Roman Coins, Campana Social War, Martini Sextus Pompeius, Spring Ancient Coin Catalogues, Bauslaugh Aesillas, d'Ailly Monnaie Romaine, Stannard Local Italian Coinages.
Images, Art, Symbols and Messaging on Coinage: MacDonald Coin Types, Cesano Fasti Della Repubblica, Kampmann Im Schatten Der Alder Roms, Alpha Bank Myth and Coinage, Fava Simboli, Sutherland Art in Coinage, Bernareggi Eventi e Personaggi sul Denario, Zehnacker Moneta, Harlan Roman Republican Moneyers 63-49BC, Morrison Greek and Roman Warships, Wallinga Boarding Bridge or Corvus, Morello Prorae, Burzio La Marina en la Moneda Romana, Toynbee Roman Historical Portraits, Lahusen Bildnismünzen, Levy From the Coin's Point of View, McCabe Campania, Fuchs Architekturdarstellungen, Tamaenko Monumental Coins.
Coin Collector Handbooks: Foss Roman Historical Coins, Albert Münzen der Römschen Republik, Warsaw collection, Melville-Jones Dictionary, H.A. Seaby Roman Silver Coins, Roman Coins, Greek Coins with later edits by David Sear, Wayne Sayles Ancient Coin Collecting, MacDonald Overstruck Greek Coins, Jenkins Coins of Greek Sicily.
Antiquarian Numismatics: Bude de Asse et Partibvs Eivs 1514 first scientific numismatic work, Hoopers Ancient Measures 1721 very early English language work similar in scope to Bude, Graevus Epitome of Florus with numismatic annotations 1702, Vicus Numismata 1619, Patarol Opera Omnia 1743, Echkel Doctrina Numorum Veterum 1792, Akerman Roman Coins owned and annotated by Admiral Smyth, Pinkerton Essay on Medals.
Modern Folio: Haeberlin Aes Grave two vols, Barrington Atlas
Antiquarian Numismatics: Fulvio Orsini, Antonio Agostini on Republican Moneyers, Patin edition 1663, Spanheim Dissertation 1706 and 1717, Havercamp Medailles 1742 Queen Christina collection, Havercamp on Republican Moneyers reprint, d'Ailly Récherches sur la Monnaie Romaine first ed., Riccio.
Antiquarian Numismatics: Discourses on Roman Social and Military History illustrated by coins 1559 parts in manuscript, Antonio Agostini Dialogue on ancient coins 1592 the first book known to be illustrated by a woman Geronima Parasole, Beger Observations on Ancient Coins 1691, Haym Thesaurus Britannici British collections of ancient coins 1742, Vaillant Familiae Romanae 1703, Earl of Pembroke collection plates 1746, King Plates on Roman Coins undated 18th century, Clermont Gallerande Manuscript on ancient and mediaeval artifacts and coins, 1802-1810, Gerrard Siglarium abbreviations on Roman monuments and coins 1792, Smyth Duke of Northumberland Collection 1856, Kircheriano Museum Aes Grave 1839.
Festschrifts and Collected Works: Essays Mattingly, Essays Badian, Collected Works HB Mattingly, Corolla Numismatica Essays Head, Essays Albert Baldwin, Essays Haeberlin, Essays Carson and Jenkins, Essays Price, Essays Grierson, Essays Hersh, Essays Russo (both separately shelved), Also various: King Quinarii, Bahrfeldt Manuscript Corpus of Republican Bronzes, Depeyrot Coining Bronze, La Notte Daunia, Vollenweider Portrait Gems, Clain-Stefanelli Select Bibliography, Metallurgy 1 RNS, Comparette Aes Signatum, Stevenson Dictionary, Travaini Dies and Coining, Grant Anniversary issues, Offprints by various authors, Kroh Ancient Coin Reference Reviews, British Museum Future of UK Numismatics (last two co-bound and shelved with several sale catalogues).
Museums, Hoards, Archaeology: Hannover, Nürnberg, Cracow, Ljubljana, Prague, Ossilinski, Vatican Aes Grave, Locarno, Ozieri, Orvieto, Pavio, Bologna, Forli (co-bound and shelved with auction catalogues), Finds in Garigliano, Vicarello, Cosa, Morgantina, Rome Aes Grave, Paestum, Manganaro Sicily hoards, Lockyear Late Republican Hoards, Martini Octavian bronzes, Martini Sicilian bronzes, Archaeology and Numismatics various works, Offprints by various authors.
Auction Catalogues, important antique named sales. Listed chronologically by date order which may not represent the shelf arrangement as in some cases several catalogues are bound together out-of-date-order, Apostolo Zeno before 1747 at Dorotheum 1956, Goesin-Verhaege 1812, Sotheby Nott 1842, Sotheby Boyne 1843, Borghese Sambon 1881, Borghese Sangiorgi 1893, Bunbury Aes Grave 1895, Hirsch Imhoof-Blumer 1907, Sangiorgi Martinetta & Nervegna 1907, Santamaria Stiavelli 1908, Hess Tolstoi 1912, Hess Prowe 1912, Werth Ratto 1913, Bourgey Quadras & Ramon 1913, Bahrfeldt (expert) 1922, Schulman Vierordt 1923, Ars Classica Bement 1924, Ratto Bonazzi 1924, Sambon Aes Grave 1925, Hamburger Niklovitch 1925, Ars Classica Levis 1925, Ratto Morcom-Hands 1928, Baranowsly Cuzzi 1929, Ratto Martini 1930, Glendining Nordheim Evans 1931, Baranowski Martini 1931, Helbing Prix 1931, Ratto Schwing 1932, Hamburger Prowe 1932, Hamburger Jameson 1932, Cahn-Hess Haeberlin 1933, Ratto Fixed Price Lists 1927, Ratto FPLs 1933, Ratto FPL 1939, Helbing FPL 1942 Santamaria Magnaguti 1949, Glendining Mayr-Harting 1949, Glendining Lawrence 1950, Spink Platt-Hall 1950, Glendining Ryan 1952, .
Auction Catalogues, mid to late 20th century important sales, some named: May not reflect shelving where catalogues are co-bound out-of-date-order. Santamaria Signorelli 1952, Ratto Giorgi 1955, Santamaria Brunacci 1958, Ratto Fixed Price Lists 1964-1971 complete, Christie's Spencer Churchill 1965, Leu Niggeler 1966, Glendining Arnold 1969, de Falco Bastianelli 1969 FPL, Schulman Mabbot 1969, Monnaies et Médailles 43 1970, Monnaies et Médailles 47 1972, Nummorum 1 1974, Nummorum 2 1975, Auctiones 5 1975, Leu 17 Nicolas 1977, Auctiones 7 1977, Münzzentrum 30 1977, Stack's Knobloch 1978, Auctiones 12 1981, Birkler 1 1979 Birkler 4 1982, Bourgey collected 20th century auctions 1988, Lanz 88 Benz 1998, Peus 322 1988, NFA Julius Caesar and his Legacy 1991, Leu 52 1991, NFA 27 Russo 1991, Vecci 3 Fallani 1996, Sternberg 32 1996, CNG Goodman 1998, Münzen en Medaillen DE 2, 1998, Casolari Repubblica Romana 1998 compiled from 1990s sales listings without attributions, Kolbe Bergman Library 2001, Leu 86 2003, Münzen en Medaillen DE 19 Gibboni 2006, UBS 78 2008, Tkalec Bombarda 2008, NAC RBW 2011-2012, Vico Huntington HSA Spanish coins 2012, Kolbe Kreindler Library 2012.
Auction Catalogues, modern, compile-bound. Roman Republican sections of original catalogues disassembled and rebound by auction house: Rauch, Numismatica Ars Classica, Gemini, Vecchi, Tkalec, ROMA, CNG, Artemide, Astarte, ArtCoins Roma.
Catalogues awaiting binding: This is always a work in progress. Better sales, such as Sotheby's 1993 auction of NFA stock, will be separetely bound, whilst most current sales will be disassembled and their Roman Republican sections co-bound with others.
Banti Corpvs Nummorvm Romanorvm Roman Republican Moneyers, Banti & Simonetti Corpvs Nummorvm Romanorvm Roman Imperial, ANS 1958 Centenary Issue.
Numismatic Journals: Numismatic Chronicle, American Numismatic Society Numismatic Notes, Museum Notes, American Journal of Numismatics, Rivista Italiana Numismatica, Quaderno di Studi Numismatica, Quaaderni Ticinesi, Surveys of Numismatic Research.
Other Ancient Coins: Roman Empire British Museum and Mattingly & Sydenham RIC, Burgos La Moneda Hispanica, Sellwood Coinage of Parthia, Allen Celtic Coins, Curtis & Milne Egypt, Plant Greek Coins, British Museum Principal Coins of the Greeks, Surveys of Numismatic Research, Berlin Numismatourist world guide to coins in museum collections.
Popular Guides and Magazines: Even serious numismatists deserve the occasional light read. There should be space in a library for attractive museum publications such as The Aegean of the Coins issued by the Athens Numismatic Museum, or magazines such as the Celator or the ANS quarterly.
Numismatic Photography Poloroid CU-5 Macro Camera for close up coin photographs, mid 1990s and now obsolete though probably functional. Although bulky it is hand portable, note the carrying straps and handle. Behind is an album of fine coins shot using this camera, many of which are regrettably no longer in the Ahala collection.
Books on Greek and Roman History
The numismatic books in the library are focused on the Roman Republican period but the history books have a broader appeal, as it is necessary to understand Greek history to comprehend the development of Rome in its context, and to understand Roman Imperial history
Primary History Sources: Loeb eitions of Livy Second Punic War, Cicero letters, Suetonius Twelve Caesars, Cambridge Ancient History volumes on Hellenistic and Roman Republican history to Augustus, Folio editions of Livy, Herodotus, Caesar, Tacitus, Thucydides,
Classic Histories in English Translation: Rollin Ancient History of the Egyptians Carthaginians Assyrians Babylonians Medes & Persians Macedonians and Grecians 1817 based on 1729 French edition, Mommsen's Nobel prize winning History of Rome, Mommsen History of Rome under the Emperors a later edit based on notes of his students, Ruskin Praeterita Scenes and Thoughts in my past life 1887, Plutarch Parallel Lives of the Greeks and Romans 1817 Longhorne edition, Visconti Iconographie Grecque 1824-1826, Baxter Greek and Roman Costume 1810.
Classic Histories and Historical Guides Gibbon, Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire 1813, Burmann's Suetonius 1736 incorporating numismatic notes and illustrations from Glarean Orsini Patin and many others thus properly a numismatic work, Schulz Histoire Romaine éclaircie par les médailles 1783 another numismatic work, Church Stories from Livy 1890, Potter Antiquities of Greece 1820 includes social history and military and naval tactics, Wordsworth Greece 1882 son of the poet and especially lavishly illustrated.
Best Reads on Ancient History. The pursuit of knowledge should be entertaining as well as inspiring. These are my favourite reads: Watkin Roman Forum, Maurice Sartre Histoires Grecques, Beard Confronting the Classics, Tom Holland Rubicon, Robert Harris Lustrum, Ted Hughes Tales from Ovid, Derek Walcott Omeros, Boris Johnson Dream of Rome, Peter Stothard Spartacus Road, Steven Saylor Empire, Stobart The Grandeur that was Rome, Homer Ilias trans Stephen Mitchell, Bruce McNall Fun While it Lasted, Abbot À Beckett Comic History of Rome, Cartledge Ancient Greece a History in Eleven Cities, MacGregor History of the World in 100 Objects, Raphael Some Talk of Alexander, Suetonius Twelve Caesars Folio ed, Cavafy 166 Poems, Kim Sloan Enlightenment, Poulson Glimpses of Roman Culture, Robert Harris Pompeii, McGregor Rome from the Ground Up, Chief Factors for the Gods the school text that most inspired me.
Best Illustrated Guides many published in conjunction with museum exhibitions: Brion Pompeii & Herculaneum, Perowne Rome, Opper Hadrian Empire and Conflict, Cornell and Matthews Atlas of the Roman World, Spivey & Squire Panorama of the Classical World, Durando Ancient Italy, Kleiner Roman Art (her accompanying Roman Architecture is available online as free video podcasts), Maggi & Troso Treasures of Ancient Greece, Thames & Hudson Pompeii the Day a City Died, Dodwell & Pomardi In Search of Greece, Wallace-Hadrill Herculaneum, Mattusch Pompeii and the Roman Villa.
History Resources: Matyszaks Classical Companion, Hammond & Amory Aeneas to Augustus, Hobbs & Jackson Roman Britain, Green Essays in Antiquity, Boardman et al The Roman World, Mattingly The Man in the Roman Street, Sidebottom Ancient Warfare, Gwynne's Latin, Archaeological Guide to Rome, Chicago University Readings in the Late Roman Republic, Sharpe The Passage of the Army of Julius Caesar Across the Thames, Broughton Magistrates, Taylor Rise of the Romans & Later Roman Republic, Southern Julius Caesar Mark Antony Cleopatra, Torelli Romanization of Italy, Michael Grant Cities of Vesuvius, MacNamara Everyday Life of the Etruscans, Dill Roman Society, Rosenstein & Morstein-Marx Companion to the Roman Republic.
Antiquity Explained Bernard de Montfaucon L'Antiquité Expliquée et Représentée en Figures 1719-1724 fifteen volumes with one thousand four hundred copperplate folio or double-folio size drawings of antiquities including numerous coins as well as dedicated sections on numismatics. Such large folio works are typical of the Enlightenment, and a later work illustrating the not-as-yet-discovered Pompeii and Herculaneum would make a nice companion.
Scriptores Historiae Romanae collected Latin works extensively illustrated with coins.
History Resources: Cowell Cicero, Wethered The Mind of the Ancient World, Mommsen Provinces of the Roman Empire, Geddes & Grosset Roman Republic, Matyszak Chronicle of the Roman Republic, Perowne Death of the Roman Republic, Hazel Who's Who in the Roman World, Grant History of Rome, Scullard From the Gracchi to Nero, Potter Roman Italy, Lomas Roman Italy, Duff-Gordon Rome, Anderson & Spiers Architecture of Greece and Rome, Palladio Four Books on Architecture, Museum of Antiquity, Harper's Dictionary of Classical Literature and Antiquities.
Museum of Painting and Sculpture 1828 mainly focused on painting but with artiles and engravings of a great many ancient and neo-classical sculptures.
Encyclopaedia Britannica the most general work possible but an incredibly rich resource, this the fifteenth and final print edition with thousands of scholarly articles and illustrations many by famous writers and many on aspects of the ancient world. An often overlooked resource, browsing the print edition allows felicitous discoveries that could not be found on a web search. For example when one looks to the book-length article on Rome, alphabetically adjacent is Rites and Ceremonies where one can read of ancient sacrifices. (Remaining volumes 13-29, Indices and Propaedia, as well as extra volumes of the Museum of Painting and Sculpture, are on an unillustrated shelf)
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Updated December 2014