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42 Nummi Countermark; As of Galba, 68-69; winged Victory

Features

Country Ostrogothic Kingdom
Period Anonymous (501-553)
Type Standard circulation coin
Years 501-553
Value 42 Nummi = 1/12 Siliqua = 1/96 Tremissis (1/96)
Composition Bronze
Weight 28 g
Diameter 10.30 mm
Shape Round
Demonetized Yes
References MEC# cf. 69, RIC I# cf. 508/510
Medieval European Coinage
by Philip Grierson and Lucia Travaini
(Cambridge University Press)
The Roman Imperial Coinage - Vol. I
by Sutherland, C.H.V.
(Spink & Son Ltd., 1984)

Obverse

Bust facing right and surrounded by legend, all with an etched countermark of a re-value in the right field.

Lettering:
SER SVLPI GALBA IMP CAESAR AVG P M TR P
XLII

Translation:
Servius Sulpicius Galba Imperator Caesar Augustus Tribunicia Potestate
Emperor Servius Sulpicius Galba, Caesar, August invested with Tribunician Power

Reverse

Winged Victory walking left with letter on either side.

Lettering: S - C

Translation:
Senatus Consulto
By Decree of the Senate

Edge

Smooth.

Comments

These countermarked coins came in two denominations: 42 Nummi and 83 Nummi. While their values are quite odd in comparison to other Ostrogothic coins, these coins were not intended to be used as general nummus pieces, but rather fractions of the Siliqua (1/12 and 1/6 of one, respectively). While these denominations in nummi are not perfectly divisible by the equivalent values in siliquae, these values are as close to the proper divisions as possible.

The host coin for this piece is a Rome mint, 1 As struck under Galba (68-69), and these were said to be countermarked in the early- to mid-6th century. With the Ostrogothic Kingdom falling in 553, that is the latest possible end-date.

Around 150 countermarked coins are known, with the vast majority being found in Italy. Because the host coins were minted hundreds of years before the countermarks were applied, it is suggested that a hoard of these host coins were found, which prompted some local mint in Ostrogothic Italy to start countermarking them.

Morrisson, Re-use 19;

See also

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Year Mintage G VG F VF XF AU UNC
ND (501-553) 

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42 Nummi (Countermark; As of Galba, 68-69; winged Victory)