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Bertolami Fine Arts
Auction 44  20 Apr 2018
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Lot 335

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Starting Price: 30 000 GBP
Price realized: 57 500 GBP

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M. Antonius, Aureus, Mint moving with Antonius, 32-31 BC; AV (g 8,01; mm 19; h 12); Ship r., with sceptre tied with fillet on prow; above, ANT AVG; below, III VIR R P C, Rv. Eagle between two standards; below, LEG - XX. Crawford 544/- (cf. 36, denarius); Antonia - (cf. 135, denarius); Calicò -.
Apparently unique. A coin of great importance and fascination, struck on a very broad flan and about extremely fine.

Marc Antony struck his "legionary" coinage in vast quantities as he and the Egyptian queen Cleopatra VII prepared for war with Octavian. In the end, their efforts proved futile: Antony and Cleopatra fled the battle at Actium on September 2, 31 B.C. once they realized they would not win the day. Antony fled back to Alexandria, where he subsequently committed suicide and Cleopatra narrowly escaped being the trophy of Octavian's triumph when she took her own life by the bite of a poisonous asp.Twenty-three legions are named in Antony's "legionary" coinage, and though he struck untold millions of debased denarii, the same cannot be said of his high-purity aurei. Including this formerly unrecorded piece, aurei are recorded for only about ten of the numbered legions as well as for the named units of the cohortes speculatorum and the cohorts praetoriae. We might presume aurei were struck as companions to each denarius issue, but that a low survival rare has left us with an incomplete record.

(50000 GBP)
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