|Roman Republican Coins and Books by Andrew McCabe
Roman Coins of Luceria and Canusium, arrangement M.H. Crawford, RRC, with comments
The purpose of this web-site is to provide illustrated examples of all the RRC varieties of the coins of Luceria (Lucera in modern Italy) and Canusium (Canosa in modern Italy), and thereby to provide a baseline for further study of the series. This presentation should help people to identify coins in this notoriously difficult series. The catalogue should be read alongside Roman Republican Coinage, Michael H. Crawford, Cambridge, 1974, to which the catalogue numbers refer.
The coin descriptions note characteristics of their designs which should serve as a basis for a future classification. For example, there are a number of coins which are described as having 'bulbous prowstems', which have a star engraved on the side of the prow, and which are of consistently heavy weight standard, are of a common engraving style, and all have thick flans. There is another group of Luceria L types, again of heavy weight, that are always struck on broad thin flans, and that have very different engraving style and design characteristics (for example, placement of mintmarks, shape of prow) when compared with the 'bulbous prowstem' group, but that have very close links to the coinage of the RRC 98 LT series. In a future reclassification of these coins, I would be minded to group coins together based on such characteristics. I have also noted many minor varieties of the coinage that were not specifically identified in RRC. In many cases these varieties can be subsumed under an existing RRC number. In other cases I have felt it necessary to introduce additional numbers, for example my new group RRC 97B, for types not included in RRC.
However the purpose of these web-pages is not (yet) to reclassify, but to present the coinage exactly as classified by Michael Crawford in RRC. This should be regarded as a baseline study.
Please refer to the main introduction for additional comments and photo credits.
Refer: RRC pp.188-189 (main entry); RRC p.20 (dating); RRC Appendix 144*; d'Ailly vol.ii, 81, 691, 754, pl.lii,8; Sydenham 132-137 and 176a-177; M.Bahrfeldt, Blätter für Münzfreunde 1930-33,680; Average bronze weight noted in RRC: 54 grams
The catalogue is formatted as a list of coin photos, with descriptions, in the order of Crawford RRC. I only comment when essential to illuminate varieties or missing types. The reader should consult Crawford RRC for additional information.
98/A1a Luceria LT Victoriatus. Italic civic mint. Jupiter small head / L; Victory T trophy / ROMA. ACM#9618-29, 2g92
98/A1b Luceria LT Victoriatus. Italic civic mint. Jupiter large head; Victory, LT monogram, trophy / ROMA. AM#1206-31, 3g07
98/A1c Luceria LT Victoriatus. Italic civic mint. Jupiter large head / L; Victory T trophy / ROMA. AM#9876-27, 2g65
98/A2 Luceria LT Half Victoriatus. Italic civic mint. Minerva / L; Horseman left / T / ROMA. Paris d'Ailly 3408 bis, 1g29
98/A3 Luceria LT Quinarius. Italic civic mint. V / Roma, Phrygian helmet / L; Dioscuri / ROMA. AM#0351-21, 2g10
98/A4 Luceria LT Sestertius. Italic civic mint. IIS / Roma, Phrygian helmet / L; Dioscuri / ROMA. Davis collection.
98/A4 var. Luceria LT Sestertius. Italic civic mint. IIS / Roma, Phrygian helmet / L; Dioscuri / ROMA. AM#11104-11, 1g10. This die-cutter, style is unrecorded in silver, but well-known in bronze.
I note this as a variety because of its engraving style. At first glance it looks imitative, but it is not - the engraver of this Sestertius is the same die-cutter who engraved many of the bronze coins of the 'Italian civic mint' coins, both with L and LT mintmarks. Characteristics of his style include that very prominent nose!
98/A5 Luceria LT Quadrans. Italian civic mint. oo / o / Mercury / L; Roma / Prow / T / ooo. RR ex Hardy coll. 11g17. Rare Mercury-headed type, value mark split oo-o around his wing.
The bronzes of the LT series, with the possible exception of the Dioscuri-type Sextans, are all of the highest rarity, however as this Mercury head quadrans shares engraving style with the RRC 97/5c and RRC 97/13d types, more examples appear where the T mintmark is obscured .
98/A6 Luceria LT Sextans. Italian civic mint. Minerva / L under chin / oo; Dioscuri / T / ROMA. AM#0669-10, 10g06. Rare Dioscuri type akin to denarius.
This is an extraordinary coin type, almost matching the design of the new Denarius system. Of course, despite their classification within the 'sextantal' period of bronze coins, almost all examples of these coins are heavier than sextantal, with the Sextantes weighing up to 13.5 grams (81 gram As weight), which should prompt a reconsideration as to whether the early Denarius was necessarily associated with bronzes of lighter than sextantal weight (54 grams). The typology is closely related to that used on Italian city coinages that often show equine types, and may well relate to these coins being intended for use in local Italian civic environments, rather than for Roman army pay. This would be consistent with the Dextans and Quincunx types representing the Nummus and Half-Nummus for these series.
98/A7 Luceria LT Uncia. Italian civic mint. o / Roma, Phrygian helmet / L; single Dioscurus / T / ROMA. RBW 6g27. Rare Dioscurus type. Very heavy.
The coinage of the 'Italian civic mit', whether with L or with LT mintmarks, and in silver as well as bronze, consistently include Phyrgian-helmed Roma types, which do not appear on any coins of the 'Roman mint' at Luceria. There is clearly a local association that has yet to be determined. Whilst I have loosely called all the L and LT coinage as 'Luceria', perhaps another nearby town or city would better match the coinage, as it is clear that the coinage can be neatly separated into the 'Italian civic mint' and 'Roman mint' types, without any overlap whatsover in engravers or in manufacture or fabric.
98/A8, Jugate heads of the Dioscuri / T; Two horses (of the Discori) / L (as described, but the mintmarks are not visible from the cited RRC example in Naples; no ROMA legend)
This type may not be a Roman coin, but a civic issue of Luceria. All Roman bronzes, without exception, bear the word ROMA. From examination of the cited example in RRC, Naples F1959 (Greek), it is not clear to me that there is the stated mintmarks, as there are two examples of the same type in Paris which are inscribed LOVCERI. It is possible that RRC 98/A8 is a misread type.
98/B1 Luceria anonymous LT Quinarius. Italic civic mint. V / Roma, Attic helmet; Dioscuri / ROMA. AM#09200-17, 1g73. No mintmark, but clearly the Attic-helmed pair of RRC 98/A3.
This Quinarius type, lacking a mintmark, is evidently the Attic-helmed Roma type to match the Phrygian-helmed type, thus forming a pair as also occurs with the Unciae, RRC 97/7a and 97/7b.
All content copyright © 2004-2012 Andrew McCabe unless otherwise noted. If you've any questions or comments please contact me on the Yahoo Group RROME: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/RROME.
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See my rarity estimates for Roman Republican Bronzes: Roman Republic Bronze Rarities..