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Urbs Roma nummus from the Seaton Down Hoard

Urbs Roma nummus from the Seaton Down Hoard

Urbs Roma nummus from the Seaton Down Hoard

Urbs Roma nummus from the Seaton Down Hoard

October 2016, a coin for an old city

A nummus made in Arles

This nummus was made in Arles, a city in modern France, between AD 333 and 334. It is one of 1,886 similar coins in the Seaton Down Hoard.

September’s coin of the month depicted the new Roman capital city of Constantinopolis. This coin was also minted to commemorate a city – Rome, the old capital of the Roman world. This coin was designed to reassure people that, although Rome was no longer the sole capital of the Roman world, it was still an important city.

The head of a female figure symbolising Rome is shown on one side of the coin. She is wearing a helmet. On the other side a wolf suckling two babies is depicted. The twins Romulus and Remus, the legendary founders of Rome. Two stars and a wreath are show above the wolf, these refer to the twin stars castor and Pollux. The double reference to twins might also highlight the two cities that held power in the Roman world – Constantinople in the East and Rome in the West.

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