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    Lucius Verus: Imperial Harmony

    Lucius Verus (AD 161-169). AV aureus (19mm, 7.29 gm, 12h). NGC MS 5/5 - 5/5.  Rome, March-December AD 161. IMP CAES L AVREL VERVS AVG, laureate head of Verus right / CONCORDIAE AVGVSTOR TR P, Marcus Aurelius and Lucius Verus standing facing each other, clasping hands; in exergue, COS II. RIC (Aurelius) 451. Cohen 45. BMC 32 note. Calic├│ 2112. Rare variety. Sharply struck, perfectly centered, with crisp detail and lustrous surfaces.

    Late in AD 136, the Emperor Hadrian adopted a handsome aristocrat named Lucius Aurelius Commodus as his intended successor, giving him the name Aelius Caesar. The new heir had a seven-year-old son, who received the name Lucius Verus, and the boy's place in the dynastic succession seemed secure. But Aelius died of consumption only 16 months later, forcing Hadrian to adopt as his replacement another, more seasoned senator, Antoninus Pius. Antoninus in turn adopted Lucius Verus and another youth of a good Spanish family, Marcus Aurelius; it is widely assumed that he was following Hadrian's wishes that both eventually succeed to the throne. After Hadrian's death, however, Antoninus determined that Lucius, while handsome and charming, was something of a lightweight and that the sober Marcus was better suited to the burden of government. Nevertheless, when Antoninus died in March, AD 161, Marcus Aurelius insisted that the Senate also grant Lucius Verus the title of Augustus, for the first time giving the Empire two theoretically coequal rulers. This stunning gold aureus was issued at the beginning of the historic joint reign, its reverse showing the two new emperors cordially clasping hands and bearing a legend celebrating the "harmony of our emperors."




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    Auction Dates
    August, 2017
    3rd Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 9
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