Numismatica Ars Classica, Zurich
Numismatica Ars Classica, Zurich, Auction 117

Greek, Roman and Gupta Empire gold coins

Tu, 01.10.2019, from 04:45 PM CEST
The auction is closed.

Description

Vitellius, 2nd January – 20th December 69. Aureus late April-20 December 69, AV 6.93 g. A VITELLIVS GERMAN IMP TR P Laureate head of Vitellius r. Rev. LIBERI IMP GERMAN Confronted draped busts of Vitellius' son, on l., and daughter, on r. C 6. BMC 12. RIC 78. CBN –. Calicó 560 (these dies).
Extremely rare. Light reddish tone and about very fine

Though Vitellius' regime was short-lived, his coinage betrays his obsession with dynasty, for he issued coins honouring his deceased father, Lucius Vitellius, and two of his children, thought to have been named Vitellius Germanicus and Vitellia. Coins for his children include aurei and denarii from Rome, denarii from Lugdunum, and extremely rare aurei and asses from a Spanish mint. The children portrayed on this aureus were born to Vitellius and his second wife, Galeria Fundana. Vitellius had left his family in Rome when, under Galba, he took up his new command in Germany. They remained safe throughout the fast and violent changes of regime. When Vitellius was recognized as emperor by the senate, his son was taken to Lugdunum to meet him upon his arrival from Germany. The boy, who apparently was about six years old at the time, was given the agnomen Germanicus and was shown to the soldiers as proof that a dynasty had been founded to replace the Julio-Claudians. There was relatively little time left for father and son to share after that glorious event. Suetonius indicates that the boy perished with his father upon his downfall, while others suggest he was executed afterward, in 70, on orders of the praetorian prefect Licinius Mucianus. Nothing is known of the girl until after her father's reign had ended, when Suetonius reports that Vespasian arranged an excellent marriage for her and provided her with a wedding gown and dowry. Vitellius had at least one other child, a son, Petronianus, by his first wife, Petronia. He apparently had sight only in one eye and was poisoned long before his father ascended the throne. Suetonius indicates that most people shared the belief that Vitellius had murdered the boy.

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Price realized 7'250 CHF
Starting price 4'000 CHF
Estimate 5'000 CHF
The auction is closed.
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