Commodus, Limes Denarius, Victory reverse, Rare
Æ; 19mm/2.9gm Unofficial mint in Pannonia Mint; struck c. 179 AD
Con/ at Very Fine after cleaning?
For cleaning, we suggest that you clean it wet at all times, with hand-held tools and very little pressure at all times. Much too valuable for shoemakers. Or simply wax, buff and flip.
Obv/ L AVREL COMMODUS AVG; laureate and cuir bust right
Rev/ TR POT IIII IMP COS II PP; Victory advancing left, holding wreath and palm
Ref/ RIC VOL 3, 664 [M. Aurelius]
Seller's Note/ Limes denarius are thought to be coins minted either officially or pseudo-officially on the fringes of the empire out of necessity. They may also be officially sanctioned issues for use in regions where political unrest made it hazardous to ship large amounts of silver. These low value Æ issues could have served troops on the front and been redeemable for good coinage when they returned to the stable regions. As our example shows zero silvering it is not a contemporary counterfeit and must be as described above.
Further information; Pannonia was a province of the Roman Empire, corresponding to present-day western Hungary and parts of eastern Austria, as well as portions of several Balkan states, primarily Slovenia, Croatia, and Serbia. Our limes denarius was found in the Northern Balkans.
If you have seen the beginning of the movie Gladiator, this is what we're talking about.
True limes denarius are very rare, as once they were redeemed for true silver denarius, they were then melted down for further uses. Twenty years in the business and this is the third one NRC has ever presented.