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Roman Theater Ticket or Token

Terracotta; 19mm/1.6gm

Con/ EF and intact

Obv/ Bust of an elite female r.

Seller's Note/ Such tokens were used for admission to games, spectacles, and theaters. Small wet blobs of terracotta were put atop a wet linen cloth or papyras in rows, pressed by a mold to create the image, then placed into an oven to bake. As seen on the reverse of our example, the linen imprint is quite clear.

But why the bust of a female on the token, you may ask? My best guess is that it's all about pandering to the Roman women rather than the men, who would have rather cut off their right arm than attend another Greek tragedy with their spouse; they wanted to go to the hippodrome for the chariot races!