The Cruelest Roman Emperor

Roman Emperor Caligula is remembered as being the cruelest roman emperor. No one can say exactly why he was so cruel. Some speculate, that it was because he fell ill of syphilis 6 month into his reign. Whatever the reason, he never recovered mentally and became a ruthless leader.

Caligula’s cruelty lasted during his four-year reign from 37-41 AD. In fact, he became so ruthless that no one was safe, including his family. Some even refer to Caligula as the mad emperor. In short, his cruelty, sadism, extravagance, and sexual perversion was nothing short of the actions of an insane tyrant. For instance, he made his horse a member of the senate and slept with or killed every member of his own family.

There are others who believe Caligula’s excessive cruelty is exaggerated by myth. They also think that Caligula only threatened to make his horse consul. Moreover, they think it was only said because of Caligula’s very low opinion of the Senate. Nevertheless, Caligula was so despised as a ruler that he was eventually executed by his own royal guard. As a result, the Cruelest Roman Emperor title seems appropriate.

Caligula Silver Denarius

This silver denarius of Roman Emperor Caligula is one of the key coins in the Twelve Caesars silver series. Furthermore, it is the finest example we have handled in many years. However, we did own ONE coin certified finer, a Mint State coin we placed several years ago.

Caligula’s image on the front of the coin is an eerie testament to his legacy of being the Cruelest Roman Emperor. The reverse of the coin depicts his predecessor, Augustus, in lifelike form. This coin is wonderfully preserved with mark-free surfaces on both sides. In conclusion, it is a wonderful coin in all regards. (Check out the video below!)

The First International Currency

The world’s first coins were minted in ancient Lydia. Lydia’s King Croesus became the first ruler to separate gold from other metals. He issued the world’s first pure gold and pure silver coins. The Persian Empire, also known as the Achaemenid Empire, took up the idea of coinage upon defeating King Croesus in 547 B.C.. However, it wasn’t until Alexander the Great of the Macedonian Empire, who conquered the Persian Empire, that the first international currency evolved. In fact, some believe that Alexander was the father of the first international currency.

Alexander ascended to the throne in 336 BC following the assassination of his father Philip II. He became king at the very young age of 20. In addition, Alexander adopted the Attic coinage standard. Unfortunately, Alexander spent his ruling years conducting lengthy military campaigns and really didn’t get to enjoy his conquest much. He was always too busy conquering more lands throughout Western Asia and Egypt.

Alexander’s importance to the history of coinage must be noted. After he became ruler of such a vast empire, he realize the necessity of successfully trading currency throughout his lands. Most importantly, once Alexander conquer an area he issued and circulated his own coins. Gradually, his huge empire became uniformed in its currency. However, some stylistic variations due to the hundreds of mints throughout Europe and Asia. Of course this was inevitable due to the vast region of his empire. It stretched from the borders of India and inner Afganistan in the east to the Adriatic Sea in the west and from Egypt in the south to the coasts of the Black Sea in the north.

Alexander The Great's Empire
Alexander the Great’s Empire

Coinage as Politcal Propaganda

Coinage as political propaganda became an integral part to warfare in the ancient world. Alexander became the inventor of mass-marketing his face or the faces of the gods he believed in. He realized the importance of someone coming into power needed to reach everyone in his empire. Just like today’s television, radio, and billboards, Alexander’s coinage was in everyone’s hands and had a far reaching impact. ( Check out this beautiful coin during Alexander’s reign in the video below)

Even after Alexander’s death his generals launched perhaps the greatest and most widespread use of coinage as propaganda. They divided Alexander’s Empire, but still used coins with Alexander’s image. In fact, they pictured him as a good-looking, divine, powerful ruler. Not only were Alexander’s coins minted during his lifetime, but his image adorned coins for two decades following his death. As a result, Macedonian generals who divided the empire into separate Hellenistic kingdoms, continued to identify the great ruler Alexander.

As time went by, new kings came into power and minted their own coinage. However, Alexander coinage lived on for two centuries. For the very first time his coins were issued by independent cities as the first international currency.   

Why buy a Coson Gold Stater?

This Beautiful Ancient Coin

If some asks “why buy a Coson Gold Stater” you can answer, because you’re looking for remarkable ancient coins. One that is gold and has tremendous value in the ancient coin market place. You can also tell them to just take a look at this beautiful ancient coin. Then show them the Coson Gold Staters in Mint State 4×4 Condition.

Some Coin Highlightsv

  • These coins have a quarter of an ounce of pure gold and were struck around 2,000 years ago.
  • They are certified by NGC, a branch of Numismatic Guaranty Corporation devoted to ancient coins.
  • They are in mint state condition and for under $2,000.

What is on these coins?

The obverse of this coin depicts 3 soldiers in procession and is very impressive. On the reverse you’ll find an intricate design of an Eagle holding an Olive wreath, so both sides are incredible.

Is this the only one?

These coins are newly acquired and we have 3 available. If you are interested and you have any questions just give us a call. You can also go directly to the website page to purchase one of these.

Some great views of this coin:

Collectors always love to own what other people can’t have.

Quality, rarity, and price are the most important factors to consider before you purchase any beautiful Ancient Coin. Other factors are also important like eye appeal, artistic merit, historical significance, and precise state of preservation, so buyer beware.

The Ancient Coin Market has been hot in the last few years and moving into what we believe is a bull market cycle. At any point in time, certain beautiful Ancient Coins may be performing very well while other areas may be quiet. That’s why it’s important to talk to an Ancient Coin Advisor at Austin Rare Coins.

Some collectors will prefer to focus on the hottest areas of the market while investors may be “value seekers” looking for the best quality coins. So when someone asks you, why buy a Coson Gold Stater? You can say because Austin Rare Coins has some great offers on them. Whatever beautiful Ancient Coin you desire… it should be the best deal and bang for the buck.

For all the facts on the history of the Ancient Rare Coin market, order our free Ancient Coins Buyer’s Guide today!

What is a Gold Aureus?

A gold coin of ancient Rome

What is a Gold Aureus? The Julius Caesar Gold Aureus was a gold coin of ancient Rome originally valued at 25 pure Silver Denarii. From the 1st century BC to the beginning of the 4th century AD the aureus was commonly struck. It later was replaced by the Solidus. This gold Aureus was struck Caesar during the Roman Republican period under Julius Caesar by Praetor A. Hirtius.

The aureus was heavier than the same size denarius because gold is more dense than silver. Before Julius Caesar became emperor of Rome the gold aureus wasn’t very common. It was Caesar’s extravagant spending and trying to gain favor with the social elitist that led to the aureas becoming more popular.

Caesar becomes the first emperor

Instead of gaining favor, Caesar’s populist and authoritarian reforms angered the elites. In fact, after Caesar centralized the bureaucracy of the Republic he made sure that he would be proclaimed “dictator for life.” Not the best way to please the social elite and this of course led to the demise of the Roman Republic and the rise of the Roman Empire.

It also led to Caesar’s demise in 44 BC on the 15th of March, the Ides of March. This day which was was famously dramatized in William Shakespeare’s play Julius Caesar. The 15th of March corresponds with the 74th day In the Roman calendar. The day that was notable as a religious observances day for Romans to settle all debts. Ironically, it became notoriously known as the date of the assassination of Julius Caesar. It was a major turning point in Roman history.

History in your hands

As you can see holding a Julius Caesar Gold Aureus is like holding a piece of history. On this Gold Aureus the head of Vesta is shown on the obverse. The priestly equipment adorns the reverse. This is a simply remarkable Julius Caesar Gold Aureus in Choice Very Fine Condition. It has also been awarded very high marks of 5 for Strike and 4 for Surfaces from NGC. This coin is hard to find in any condition!

The first Roman Emperor, Julius Caesar, is still known around the world over 2,000 years after his demise. Collecting and owning a gold stater that has seen circulation in the past makes you wonder just whose hands actually have touched it. Who knows, maybe even Julius Caesar himself. Something to ponder when you look at such a beautiful and historical remembrance of Ancient Rome. Now when someone asks, what is a Gold Aureus? You know at least one fine example with a great story!

How much is a Roman Aureus worth?

Ancient coins are beautiful, miniature works of art, and true antiquities. In order to understand how much is a Roman aureus worth, you have to understand that ancient coins are amazingly rare. There is a very limited supply and a growing demand from investors and collectors.

You don’t need a fortune to acquire a truly rare and beautiful ancient coin. There are many different types. But, In order to really understand a Roman Aureus’ worth you have to know how rare it is. You also have to know what the condition it is in. And, you have to know how many people want to own it.

The 3 basic principles the affect cost of ancient coins

The rarity of a coin is basically determined by these three different principles: 1) How many of a particular coin survived and are still in existence. 2) Whether the coin is in perfect condition or not so perfect. The higher the perfection the more rare and desirable the coin will be as a general rule. 3) Last but not least, how many people want to own one. It is the driving force that can make something extremely valuable.

A Roman Gold Aureus issued under Roman Emperor Augustus, as seen in the video below, is worth a lot. An example like this costs around $20,000 if it is genuine and certified by NGC. NGC is the only true Ancient Coin Authentication and Grading Service. NGC developed a specialized grading system for ancient coins. They grade a coin’s state of wear and give a detailed explanation of the coin’s appearance.

Augustus Gold Aureus are rare because they are hard to find. In fact, we have never seen or held one in any condition. They are also rare because of their spectacular quality and how centered they are by a measured strike.

Augustus Gold Aureus

Obverse: CAESAR AVGVSTVS between two laurel trees.
Reverse: CIVIS SERVATOS in three lines within an oak wreath.

What Ancient Roman coins were made of silver?

What Ancient Roman coins were made of silver is a question we frequently get. This NGC Certified Roman coin minted by Emperor Otho for instance, is a great example, and it is a beautiful coin. Finding a Silver Denarius in Choice Extremely Fine Condition with 3.54 grams of silver is not an easy task.

On the front of this Otho Silver Denarius you’ll find the likeness of Emperor OTHO CAESAR with his head facing right. On the reverse, seen advancing left, you’ll find the likeness of VICTORIA. She is the Roman Goddess of Victory.

Marcus Otho Caesar Augustus was born Marcus Salvius Otho in the year 28 AD. He was Roman emperor, but only for three months, and in addition his life ended tragically. Two weeks shy of his thirty-seventh birthday Otho took his own life. In conclusion, by stabbing himself with a dagger Otho’s reign ranks as one of the briefest in the history of the Roman Empire.

This coin is an excellent example of one of the least known Roman Emperors. Examples of coins from Emperor Otho are rare because of two reasons. Firstly because he only was emperor for 3 months and secondly because most found were badly damaged. We are lucky to have this Choice Extremely Fine grade and able to share it with you.

Otho denarii are quite scarce and extremely difficult to find. For this reason only around 300 of these coins have been certified, and none in Mint State.

Several Ancient Roman coins were made of silver including the popular Silver Denarius silver coin, however the base silver coin was the Sestertius. In conclusion, there were many types of Roman silver coins. They spanned the 482 years as a Roman Republic, 503 years as the Roman Empire, and 1131 years as the Byzantine Empire.