Roman Republic coin, silver, AR denarius. Minted by Marcus Sergius Silus, of the patrician gens Sergia, quaestor (financial official) in 116-115 B.C.E. The winged-helmed head of Roma, the goddess and personification of Rome in profile, on obverse with the inscription "ROMA" and a denarial symbol, left. On reverse, a horseman holds a sword with the head of a barbarian. Below is the letter "Q", indicating that the coin was issued by a quaestor, with the inscriptions "M. SERGI" under the horse and "SILUS" in the exergum. Coin is slightly bent on one edge.
Date range: 116-115 B.C.E.
Remarks: Later coins of the Republic often had reverse designs alluding to the importance of the moneyer's family. This coin refers to an ancestor in the 2nd Punic War (218-201 B.C.E.) who had a right arm of iron, shown here holding the head of an enemy.
"This issuer strikes as a quaestor and by special decree of the Senate (ex senatus consulto). Quaestors were the immediate superiors of the moneyers and under unusual circumstances occasinally utilized their authority to produce coins" (Sear 103, Vol I).
Reference: David Sear, "Roman Coins and Their Values" , London 2000 (Vol I), #163, pg 103; Edward A. Sydenham, The Coinage of the Roman Republic, London, 1952, Pl. 18, 544.
|Title||M. Sergius Silus|
|Credit line||Gift of Arthur G. and Roswitha Haas|