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Coin Detail
Click here to see enlarged image.
ID:     77000519
Type:     Roman Provincial
Region:     JUDAEA
City:     Caesarea
Issuer:     Caligula, Agrippa I
Date Ruled:     AD 37-43
Metal:     Bronze
Denomination:     AE 23
Diameter:     23 mm
Weight:     11.53 g
Die Axis:     12 h
Obverse Description:     Laureate head of Caligula right
Reverse Description:     Germanicus in triumphal quadriga right, holding eagle-tipped scepter; [car decorated with Nike standing right]; LE in exergue.
Mint:     Caesarea Paneas
Primary Reference:     RPC I, 4976
Reference2:     Burnett, Coinage 4
Reference3:     Meshorer, p. 93-94 and 116M (same obv. die)
Reference4:     SNG ANS 261 (Tiberias; same dies); Hendin 549
Photograph Credit:     Classical Numismatic Group
Grade:     EF, toned.
Notes:     Sale: Triton XI, Lot: 519 The grandson of Herod I, Agrippa I, so-named in honor of the victor of Actium, spent much of his youth in the Roman imperial court. Popular with the imperial family, including the emperor Tiberius, Agrippa passed much of his time in the home of Antonia Minor, the mother of Germanicus and the future emperor Claudius. There, the boys became great friends, and as an older man, Agrippa became attached to the future emperor Gaius, being appointed governor of the territories of Batanaea and Trachonitis upon Gaius’ accession. Unfortunately contemporary politics placed a significant strain on the relationship between the king and Rome. In AD 39 Agrippa’s uncle, Antipas, was accused of plotting with the Parthians and was exiled. Agrippa’s loyalty gained him his uncle’s forfeited territories. In AD 40 renewed riots between Greeks and Jews broke out in Alexandria, and Gaius, clearly unhappy with his Jewish subjects, provocatively ordered the installation of a statue of himself within the Holy of Holies in Jerusalem. Agrippa, who had been unsuccessfully involved in trying to quell similar riots in Alexandria before, sought to emphasize his loyalty to local Roman officials by striking coinage which commemorated his long-standing friendship with Gaius and, especially, Germanicus. Based on the dupondii struck in honor of the emperor’s father Germanicus, this coin includes the great general riding in his triumphal car in honor of his recovery of the standards lost by Varus, rather than portraying Agrippa himself, an identification emphasized by the specific inclusion of the word NOMISMA in the legend. By avoiding self promotion, Agrippa hoped to successfully navigate the treacherous waters which might result in his own removal from power.