A ROMAN DENARIUS OF AUGUSTUS


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Directory: Antiques: Regional Art: Ancient World: Roman: Coins: Pre AD 1000: Item # 1297153

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Biblical Artifacts
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Lugdunum Mint (modern Lyons, France); 2 BCE-4 CE

Obverse: Laureate bust of Augustus facing right. CAESAR AUGUSTUS DIVI F PATER PATRIAE.

Reverse: Caius and Lucius standing togate and facing, each resting hand on shield with spear behind. Lituus and simpulum in field. C L CAESAR (in exergue) AUGUSTI F COS DESIG PRINC IVVENT.

Weight: 3.65g; Max diameter: 18.1 mm

Coin in very fine condition.

Provenance: From a Private American Collection. Ships from the United States.

Certificate of Authenticity Included.

Bibliography:

RIC I, 207

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Born Gaius Octavian, Augustus was formally adopted by his maternal great-uncle, Julius Caesar, in his will and named as successor to the Roman Republic. He received the title of Augustus following the Battle of Actium in 27 BCE when he was formally given the title Imperator Caesar Divi Filius Augustus by the Roman Senate and it is this title that is generally used to refer to him during the period in which this coin was minted.

Known today as the first Roman emperor this was a title that Augustus wisely chose to distance himself from during his lifetime. It is in this choice that we see the true genius of his rule. Not only was he a competent and effective ruler but also a great propagandist and purveyor of his own self image. Although he was for all intents and purposes an emperor he went to great pains to publicly restore power to the Senate following the Battle of Actium and to actively promote the concept of the Roman Republic.

He was also the Roman Emperor during the birth of Christ in the late 1st Century BCE. In Luke 2:1 where it states “In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.” it was Imperator Caesar Divi Filius Augustus who issued it.