Vitellius, 69 AD, Rome, Denarius

$750.00

Vitellius, 69 AD, Rome, Denarius, 3.29g. RIC-97, inaccurately citing Cohen-55 (40 Fr.) for this variant, see below. Cf. BMC-23 note and Glasgow-12, pl. 30, C-55 (40 Fr.), an Aureus from the same reverse die as our Denarius. Obv: A VITELLIVS GERM IMP AVG TR P Head laureate r. Rx: L VIT[ELLIVS CO]S III CENSOR L. Vitellius seated l. on curule chair, holding branch and eagle-tipped scepter.

Ex Berk 30, 13 February 1984, lot 197. Rare, especially with L. Vitellius not just extending his right hand on the reverse, but also holding a branch with it. Cohen describes this variant from the Paris collection, but in fact Paris’ two Aurei and two Denarii of the type, Paris pl. XXIII, 61-64, all omit the branch. RIC-96 cites an Aureus with branch in Glasgow, and our Denarius is actually from that same reverse die. Neither variant, with or without branch, was in the Reka Devnia hoard. Vitellius’ father, as this coin type records, had achieved the highest offices attainable by a private man at Rome, Consul for the third time and Censor, during the reign of Claudius, when he had been a close friend of the Emperor and the most influential Roman Senator.

Description

Vitellius, 69 AD, Rome, Denarius, 3.29g. RIC-97, inaccurately citing Cohen-55 (40 Fr.) for this variant, see below. Cf. BMC-23 note and Glasgow-12, pl. 30, C-55 (40 Fr.), an Aureus from the same reverse die as our Denarius. Obv: A VITELLIVS GERM IMP AVG TR P Head laureate r. Rx: L VIT[ELLIVS CO]S III CENSOR L. Vitellius seated l. on curule chair, holding branch and eagle-tipped scepter.

Ex Berk 30, 13 February 1984, lot 197. Rare, especially with L. Vitellius not just extending his right hand on the reverse, but also holding a branch with it. Cohen describes this variant from the Paris collection, but in fact Paris’ two Aurei and two Denarii of the type, Paris pl. XXIII, 61-64, all omit the branch. RIC-96 cites an Aureus with branch in Glasgow, and our Denarius is actually from that same reverse die. Neither variant, with or without branch, was in the Reka Devnia hoard. Vitellius’ father, as this coin type records, had achieved the highest offices attainable by a private man at Rome, Consul for the third time and Censor, during the reign of Claudius, when he had been a close friend of the Emperor and the most influential Roman Senator.

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