History Coins
History Coins

The Civil Wars & The Flavian Dynasty

Part 1   (for Domitian Part 2)

Nero to Titus

In 68AD Vindex, the governor of Gallia Lugdunensis, revolted against the unpopular Emperor Nero. Galba, in Spain, answered his call for support and rallied with troops. However, Vindex was defeated in May by the governor of Upper Germany, Rufus. Luckily for Galba, just a few weeks later Nero committed suicide and Galba was then formally accepted as Emperor by the Senate.

Nero, Silver Denarius, Rome, Jupiter Seated, AD 67-68

Obverse: laureate head right, NERO CAESAR AVGVSTVS


Reverse: Jupiter seated left, holding spear, IVPPITER CVSTOS

Grade: F+ with surfave blistering on both sides (stable) some over zealous investigation of one blister on the reverse with scrapes

17mm, 3.08g; Ref: RIC 69

Prov: Ex Spink - Peter Stagnetto Collection sale, previuosly London Mint Office purchase for £895!


£195 (P&P FREE to UK other locations ask) #74

Galba was also seen as an unpopular leader, due to his ruthlessness and avarice, he seized the property of Roman citizens, disbanded the German legions, and did not pay the Praetorians and the soldiers who fought against Vindex.

Galba, Silver Denarius, Rome, Roma Standing, AD 68-69, RARE

Obverse: laureate head right, IMP SER GALBA CAESAR AVG P 



Reverse: ROMA RENASCES, Roma, helmeted, in military dress, standing left, holding Victory on globe in right hand and eagle-tipped sceptre in left

Grade: Fine+ RARE, toned; 17mm, 2.66g

Ref: RIC 1 229 or 230 (only one displayed on RIC)

Prov: Ex Spink -The Rymer & Trajan Collections Sale


£210 (P&P FREE to all locations) #247 


Galba, PAX Dupondius, July-August 68AD


Galba right/ Pax standing holding olive-branch and caduceus, S-C. 10.57g. Almost Very Fine.

£470 (P&P FREE to UK, other locations ask)

Otho, his supporter against Nero, had hoped to be named his successor but when Galba had other ideas, Otho wasted no time in organising a conspiracy against him through the Praetorian guard and had him assassinated.


He seized the throne in January 69 but the Rhine legions had already sided with Vitellius, not recognising either Galba or Otho previously, and the battle for the lead came to a head in April at the battle of Bedrianus. Otho was massively defeated and elected to commit suicide as a result.

Otho, Silver Denarius, Rome Mint, 69AD, Securitas #2

Obverse: Bare head of Otho facing right

Rev: Securitas standing facing holding wreath and sceptre.

3.12g, AVF for type, RARE


£700 (Available through the Hoard at their terms and conditions)  

Vitellius, Silver Denarius, Rome MInt, April-December 69AD #1

Obv: Laureate head , right

Rev: Tripod-lebes surmounted by dolphin, raven below


Ref: RIC 1 109, Fine, Scarce



£370 (P&P FREE to UK, other locations ask)

Vitellius was now undisputed ruler of the Empire and took his time returning to Rome for the title of Augustus to be bestowed, by arriving in July, this was a fatal error. The time was used productively by the legions to name Vespasian their preferred choice. In December, the again unpopular Vitellius was arrested in his palace and dragged through the streets to be mobbed. Vespasian had been quietly gathering support and with the help of his son, Titus, both militarily and personally, he took the throne.

Vespasian Silver Denarius, Two Oxen Reverse, Rome AD 77-78

Obv: laureate head right

Rev: two oxen, COSVIII below ground line

RIC II 943,

Grade: very fine grade 



£160 SOLD

Vespasian, Dupondius, Rome Mint, Felicitas, AD74

Obv:Radiate bust, left 

Rev: Felicitas standing left, holding caduceus & cornucopia.

11.73g, 27mm,

Grade: VF

Ref: S2346

£270 (P&P to UK FREE, other locations ask)

Divus Vespasian, Silver Denarius, Struck by Titus, Rome Mint, 80 AD, Capricorns Back to Back


Laureate head of Vespasian / SC on a shield supporrted by two Capricorns back to back, globe below.

18mm, 3.01g, VF+



£200 (P&P FREE to UK, other locations ask)

He, unlike his three predecessors, was a competent and well liked leader and enjoyed ten years as Emperor before this death at the age of 70. Titus was his successor.


As for the coinage of these fleeting leaders, it never ceases to amaze me that they produced such a large number of types in such a short space of time. Vespasian and Titus had the luxury of a more leisurely span of time and produced coinage jointly as well as in each other's names.

****Titus as Augustus, AE20, Lycaonia, Lystra 79-81AD, RARE****

Obverse: Laureate head of Titus, right, IMP T CAE AVG VESPA


Reverse: Helmeted Athena (originally described as a male head) with two spears over shoulder, COE IVL LVS

Ref: RPC II 1606 RARE 10 years ago there were only three known and one sold for $900, now there are still only 13 on RPC! 

3.14g, 20mm

Grade: VF, black patina and sandy deposits




£180 (P&P FREE to all locations)


Titus as Caesar Under Vespasian, Silver Denarius, Rome Mint, Prow, 77-78AD, RARE

Head of Titus, right/Prow of galley right, star above. S2441

3.14g, 18mm, VF


£200 SOLD

Titus as Augustus, Silver Denarius, Square Seat Draped, Rome Mint, 80AD

Obv: Head of Titus, right

Rev: Square seat draped, three crescents in triangular frame, adorned with corn-ears 

Ref: RIC II 124

Grade: AVF

3.3g, 17mm

£260 (P&P FREE to UK, non-UK ask)

Titus, Restitution Issue Dupondius, Rome, Livia as Pietas, AD 80-81

Obverse: Veiled and diademed bust of Livia (Augustus' wife) as Pietas, PIETAS below

Reverse: Large SC to centre, legend around probably IMP T CAES DIVI VEST F AVG RESTIT

27mm, 11.27g

Grade: VF some mottled corrosion

Ref: RIC II Prt 1 426-8, RARE

Pro: Ex Roma, previously a Belgian collection


£175 (P&P FREE to all locations) #1203

History Note: Towards the end of 79AD, Mount Vesuvius erupted destroying Pompeii and Herculaneum, there was also a plague during that year. It is thought that the last coin was one of a series giving prays after these, now considered natural, disasters!



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George V gold full sovereign 1913 George V Full Gold Sovereign 1913 makes a wonderful present!

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