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    Augustus In His Prime

    Augustus (27 BC-AD 14). AR denarius (19mm, 3.89 gm, 6h). Spain, Colonia Patricia(?), ca. 19/8 BC. CAESAR AVGVSTVS, bare head of Augustus right. / OB CIVES above, SERVATOS below, oak wreath with ties upward. RIC 75a. BMCRE 376-7. RSC 210. A magnificent piece, with a high-relief portrait of Augustus in his prime. Fantastic strike and surface luster. NGC MS 5/5 - 4/5.

    After defeating Antony and Cleopatra and gaining undisputed mastery of Rome in 31 BC, Octavian, still only 32 years old, underwent a startling transformation from brutal warlord to benevolent monarch. Unlike his granduncle Julius Caesar, Octavian did not proclaim himself dictator, nor did he openly attack time-honored institutions such as the Senate. Instead he concealed his supremacy by carefully accumulating traditional titles and magistracies, placing the entire army and government under his direct control. He thus created the role of "emperor" as a constitutional autocrat. While his reconstituted government cemented his personal grip on power, he relied on the Senate as a pool of talent from which he drew governors, magistrates and advisors. He styled himself as Princeps, or first citizen, and settled into a relatively unostentatious life. In 27 BC, the Senate voted him the name Augustus, an unprecedented title of immense authority and prestige. He consolidated Rome's conquests, pared the army down to a manageable size, and reformed the Empire's finances from top to bottom, creating a new and stable system of coinage that endured essentially unchanged for three centuries. The incessant civil wars of decades past gave way to unbroken peace and prosperity, the beginnings of the Pax Romana that would endure 250 years. 

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    August, 2015
    13th Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 660

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