Welcome Sign-In | Join Now
Sold for Sign-in or Join (free & quick) includes Buyer's Premium (BP) 


Spectacular Framed Medallion of Antoninus Pius

Antoninus Pius (AD 138-161). AE framed medallion (67mm, 100.42 gm, 12h).  Rome, AD 140-144. ANTONINVS AVG PIVS P P TR P COS III, laureate head of Antoninus left / Prometheus seated right on cuirass, fashioning image of man out of clay; Minerva stands before him to left, reaching out with right hand to bestow life and intellect into the figure. Unpublished with bust left in frame, but cf. Gnecchi, pl. 54, 8 for reverse die; cf. Toynbee pl. XXIV, 1 (framed, same obverse die) and 4 (unframed, same obverse die, same reverse composition but different die). A magnificent medallion, at 67mm and over 100 grams perhaps the largest framed piece ever offered. With a lovely dark green patina. Choice Very Fine.

'Framed medallions' such as this remarkable piece were produced by the mint of Rome toward the close of each year and presented to foreign dignitaries, military officers and distinguished citizens, likely by the emperor himself at a special ceremony.  Close examination of this and similar medallions confirms that the the broad, grooved rim around the perimeter is not a separate piece, but that the central  medallion and rim are struck from a single set of dies on a planchet composed of concentric rings of reddish bronze and yellow brass, or orichalcum as the Romans would have called it. Similar medallions were produced with some regularity in later reigns, particularly those of Marcus Aurelius, Commodus and the Severans.  

The attractive reverse theme, depicting the creation myth of Prometheus bringing the human race into existence, assisted by Pallas Minerva, was widely celebrated during the reign of Antoninus, particularly during the runup to the festivities celebrating Rome's 900th anniversary (AD 147-148).  Although this medallion must be dated before AD 145 (when Antoninus entered his fourth Consulship; the obverse legend is here dated COS III), coins  and medallions with mythological scenes clearly prefiguring the 900th anniversary were widely struck from AD 140 to 144. 

Service and Handling Description: Coins & Currency (view shipping information)

Sales Tax information  |  Terms and Conditions

Bidding Guidelines and Bid Increments

Glossary of Terms

Auction Info

Auction Dates
January, 2013
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 2
Members Tracking: N/A
Page Views: 1,872

Buyer's Premium per Lot:
17.5% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

Heritage membership

sold in the last year

Join Now - It's Free

  1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
  2. Bid online
  3. Free Collector newsletter
  4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
  5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your

Consignments wanted

Consign to the 2015 December 10 - 12 World Coins Signature Auction - Hong Kong.

Learn about consigning with us

Today I received the catalog which is a work of art unto itself. When I found my lot I was literally blown away by what Craig had done with the presentation....... quite amazing to say the least!
Ron Cipolla,
Dallas, TX
View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. To compare for yourself, visit:

Video tutorial

Getting the most out of search

Recent auctions

2015 July 9 - 12 Summer FUN US Coins Signature Auction - Orlando Summer FUN
2015 July 9 - 12 Summer FUN US Coins Signature Auction - Orlando Summer FUN
REALIZED $8,308,723
2015 April 9 - 14 CICF World Coins & Ancient Coins Signature Auction - Chicago
2015 April 9 - 14 CICF World Coins & Ancient Coins Signature Auction - Chicago
REALIZED $6,503,481
2015 April 22 - 28 CSNS Currency Signature Auction - Chicago
2015 April 22 - 28 CSNS Currency Signature Auction - Chicago
REALIZED $10,592,191

© 2015 Heritage Auctions | All Rights Reserved