Seller: highrating_lowprice (20,158) 100%, Location: Rego Park, New York, Ships to: Worldwide, Item: 231994673594 Item: i56234 Authentic Ancient Coin of: Antoninus Pius - Roman Emperor: 138-161 A.D. Billon Silver Tetradrachm 22mm (11.14 grams) of Alexandria in Egypt Dated RY 7 (143/144 A.D.) Reference: Dattari 2366; Köln 1440; ; Milne 1746; Emmett 1431 ANTWNINOC CЄB. ЄVCЄB., Laureate head right. Serapis seated left holding sceptre, Cerberus seated before, L - Z (date) across fields. You are bidding on the exact item pictured, provided with a Certificate of Authenticity and Lifetime Guarantee of Authenticity. Billon is an alloy of a precious metal (most commonly silver , but also mercury ) with a majority base metal content (such as copper ). It is used chiefly for making coins, medals , and token coins . The word comes from the French bille. The use of billon coins dates from ancient Greece through the Middle Ages . During the 6th and 5th centuries BC, some cities on Lesbos Island used coins made of 60% copper and 40% silver. In both ancient times and the Middle Ages, leaner mixtures were adopted, with less than 2% silver content. Billon coins are perhaps best known from the Roman Empire , where progressive debasements of the Roman denarius and the Roman provincial tetradrachm in the 2nd century AD led to declining silver and increasing bronze content in these denominations of coins. Eventually, by the third quarter of the 2nd century AD, these coins were almost entirely bronze, with only a thin coating or even a wash of silver. Serapis (Latin spelling, or Sarapis in Greek) was a syncretic Hellenistic -Egyptian god in Antiquity . His most renowned temple was the Serapeum of Alexandria . Under Ptolemy Soter , efforts were made to integrate Egyptian religion with that of their Hellenic rulers. Ptolemy's policy was to find a deity that should win the reverence alike of both groups, despite the curses of the Egyptian priests against the gods of the previous foreign rulers (i.e Set who was lauded by the Hyksos ). Alexander the Great had attempted to use Amun for this purpose, but he was more prominent in Upper Egypt, and not as popular with those in Lower Egypt , where the Greeks had stronger influence. The Greeks had little respect for animal-headed figures, and so a Greek-style anthromorphic statue was chosen as the idol , and proclaimed as the equivalent of the highly popular Apis . It was named Aser-hapi (i.e. Osiris-Apis), which became Serapis, and was said to be Osiris in full, rather than just his Ka (life force). // History The earliest mention of a Serapis is in the disputed death scene of Alexander (323 BC). Here, Serapis has a temple at Babylon , and is of such importance that he alone is named as being consulted on behalf of the dying king. His presence in Babylon would radically alter perceptions of the mythologies of this era, though fortunately it has been discovered that the unconnected Babylonian god Ea (Enki) was titled Serapsi, meaning king of the deep, and it is possibly this Serapsi which is referred to in the diaries. The significance of this Serapsi in the Hellenic psyche, due to its involvement in Alexander's death, may have also contributed to the choice of Osiris-Apis as the chief Ptolemaic god. According to Plutarch , Ptolemy stole the cult statue from Sinope , having been instructed in a dream by the unknown god , to bring the statue to Alexandria , where the statue was pronounced to be Serapis by two religious experts. One of the experts was of the Eumolpidae , the ancient family from whose members the hierophant of the Eleusinian Mysteries had been chosen since before history, and the other was the scholarly Egyptian priest Manetho , which gave weight to the judgement both for the Egyptians and the Greeks. Plutarch may not however be correct, as some Egyptologists allege that the Sinope in the tale is really the hill of Sinopeion, a name given to the site of the already existing Serapeum at Memphis . Also, according to Tacitus , Serapis (i.e. Apis explicitly identified as Osiris in full) had been the god of the village of Rhakotis , before it suddenly expanded into the great capital of Alexandria. The statue suitably depicted a figure resembling Hades or Pluto , both being kings of the Greek underworld , and was shown enthroned with the modius , a basket/grain-measure, on his head, since it was a Greek symbol for the land of the dead. He also held a sceptre in his hand indicating his rulership, with Cerberus , gatekeeper of the underworld, resting at his feet, and it also had what appeared to be a serpent at its base, fitting the Egyptian symbol of rulership, the uraeus . With his (i.e. Osiris') wife Isis, and their son (at this point in history) Horus (in the form of Harpocrates ), Serapis won an important place in the Greek world, reaching Ancient Rome , with Anubis being identified as Cerberus. In Rome, Serapis was worshiped in the Iseum Campense, the sanctuary of the goddess Isis located in the Campus Martius and built during the Second Triumvirate . The Roman cults of Isis and Serapis gained in popularity late in the first century thanks to the god's role in the miracles that the imperial usurper Vespasian experienced in the city of Alexandria , where he stayed prior to his return to Rome as emperor in 70 AD . From the Flavian Dynasty on, Serapis sometimes appeared on imperial coinage with the reigning emperor. The great cult survived until 385, when a Christian mob destroyed the Serapeum of Alexandria, and subsequently the cult was forbidden by the Theodosian decree . The early Alexandrian Christian community appears to have been rather syncretic in their worship of Serapis and Jesus and would prostrate themselves without distinction between the two. A letter inserted in the Augustan History , ascribed to the Emperor Hadrian , refers to the worship of Serapis by residents of Egypt who described themselves as Christians , and Christian worship by those claiming to worship Serapis, suggesting a great confusion of the cults and practices: The land of Egypt, the praises of which you have been recounting to me, my dear Servianus, I have found to be wholly light-minded, unstable, and blown about by every breath of rumour. There those who worship Serapis are, in fact, Christians, and those who call themselves bishops of Christ are, in fact, devotees of Serapis. There is no chief of the Jewish synagogue , no Samaritan , no Christian presbyter , who is not an astrologer , a soothsayer , or an anointer. Even the Patriarch himself, when he comes to Egypt, is forced by some to worship Serapis, by others to worship Christ. Alexandria was founded by Alexander the Great in April 331 BC as Ἀλεξάνδρεια (Alexándreia). Alexander's chief architect for the project was Dinocrates . Alexandria was intended to supersede Naucratis as a Hellenistic center in Egypt, and to be the link between Greece and the rich Nile Valley. An Egyptian city, Rhakotis , already existed on the shore, and later gave its name to Alexandria in the Egyptian language (Egyptian *Raˁ-Ḳāṭit, written rˁ-ḳṭy.t, 'That which is built up'). It continued to exist as the Egyptian quarter of the city. A few months after the foundation, Alexander left Egypt and never returned to his city. After Alexander's departure, his viceroy, Cleomenes , continued the expansion. Following a struggle with the other successors of Alexander, his general Ptolemy succeeded in bringing Alexander's body to Alexandria. Alexandria, sphinx made of pink granite , Ptolemaic . Although Cleomenes was mainly in charge of overseeing Alexandria's continuous development, the Heptastadion and the mainland quarters seem to have been primarily Ptolemaic work. Inheriting the trade of ruined Tyre and becoming the centre of the new commerce between Europe and the Arabian and Indian East, the city grew in less than a generation to be larger than Carthage . In a century, Alexandria had become the largest city in the world and, for some centuries more, was second only to Rome. It became Egypt's main Greek city, with Greek people from diverse backgrounds. Alexandria was not only a centre of Hellenism , but was also home to the largest Jewish community in the world. The Septuagint , a Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible , was produced there. The early Ptolemies kept it in order and fostered the development of its museum into the leading Hellenistic center of learning (Library of Alexandria), but were careful to maintain the distinction of its population's three largest ethnicities: Greek, Jewish, and Egyptian . From this division arose much of the later turbulence, which began to manifest itself under Ptolemy Philopater who reigned from 221–204 BC. The reign of Ptolemy VIII Physcon from 144–116 BC was marked by purges and civil warfare. The city passed formally under Roman jurisdiction in 80 BC, according to the will of Ptolemy Alexander , but only after it had been under Roman influence for more than a hundred years. It was captured by Julius Caesar in 47 BC during a Roman intervention in the domestic civil war between king Ptolemy XIII and his advisers, and the fabled queen Cleopatra VII . It was finally captured by Octavian , future emperor Augustus on 1 August 30 BC, with the name of the month later being changed to August to commemorate his victory. In AD 115, large parts of Alexandria were destroyed during the Kitos War , which gave Hadrian and his architect, Decriannus , an opportunity to rebuild it. In 215, the emperor Caracalla visited the city and, because of some insulting satires that the inhabitants had directed at him, abruptly commanded his troops to put to death all youths capable of bearing arms. On 21 July 365, Alexandria was devastated by a tsunami (365 Crete earthquake), an event still annually commemorated 17 hundred years later as a "day of horror." In the late 4th century, persecution of pagans by newly Christian Romans had reached new levels of intensity. In 391, the Patriarch Theophilus destroyed all pagan temples in Alexandria under orders from Emperor Theodosius I . The Brucheum and Jewish quarters were desolate in the 5th century. On the mainland, life seemed to have centred in the vicinity of the Serapeum and Caesareum , both of which became Christian churches . The Pharos and Heptastadium quarters, however, remained populous and were left intact. In 619, Alexandria fell to the Sassanid Persians . Although the Byzantine Emperor Heraclius recovered it in 629, in 641 the Arabs under the general Amr ibn al-As captured it during the Muslim conquest of Egypt , after a siege that lasted 14 months. Titus Aurelius Fulvus Boionius Arrius Antoninus (19 September 86 – 7 March 161), generally known in English as Antoninus Pius was Roman emperor from 138 to 161. He was the fourth of the Five Good Emperors and a member of the Aurelii . He did not possess the sobriquet "Pius" until after his accession to the throne. Almost certainly, he earned the name "Pius" because he compelled the Senate to deify his adoptive father Hadrian ; the Historia Augusta , however, suggests that he may have earned the name by saving senators sentenced to death by Hadrian in his later years. // He was the son and only child of Titus Aurelius Fulvus , consul in 89 whose family came from Nemausus (modern Nîmes ) and was born near Lanuvium and his mother was Arria Fadilla. Antoninus’ father and paternal grandfather died when he was young and he was raised by Gnaeus Arrius Antoninus , his maternal grandfather, a man of integrity and culture and a friend of Pliny the Younger . His mother married to Publius Julius Lupus (a man of consular rank), Suffect Consul in 98, and bore him a daughter called Julia Fadilla. As a private citizen between 110 and 115, he married Annia Galeria Faustina the Elder . They had a very happy marriage. She was the daughter of consul Marcus Annius Verus and Rupilia Faustina (a half-sister to Roman Empress Vibia Sabina ). Faustina was a beautiful woman, renowned for her wisdom. She spent her whole life caring for the poor and assisting the most disadvantaged Romans. Having filled with more than usual success the offices of quaestor and praetor , he obtained the consulship in 120; he was next appointed by the Emperor Hadrian as one of the four proconsuls to administer Italia , then greatly increased his reputation by his conduct as proconsul of Asia . He acquired much favor with the Emperor Hadrian, who adopted him as his son and successor on 25 February, 138, after the death of his first adopted son Lucius Aelius , on the condition that Antoninus would in turn adopt Marcus Annius Verus, the son of his wife's brother, and Lucius, son of Aelius Verus, who afterwards became the emperors Marcus Aurelius and Lucius Verus (colleague of Marcus Aurelius). Emperor On his accession, Antoninus' name became "Imperator Caesar Titus Aelius Hadrianus Antoninus Augustus Pontifex Maximus". One of his first acts as Emperor was to persuade the Senate to grant divine honours to Hadrian, which they had at first refused; his efforts to persuade the Senate to grant these honours is the most likely reason given for his title of Pius (dutiful in affection; compare pietas ). Two other reasons for this title are that he would support his aged father-in-law with his hand at Senate meetings, and that he had saved those men that Hadrian, during his period of ill-health, had condemned to death. He built temples, theaters, and mausoleums, promoted the arts and sciences, and bestowed honours and financial rewards upon the teachers of rhetoric and philosophy . In marked contrast to his predecessors Trajan and Hadrian , Antoninus was not a military man. One modern scholar has written "It is almost certain not only that at no time in his life did he ever see, let alone command, a Roman army, but that, throughout the twenty-three years of his reign, he never went within five hundred miles of a legion". His reign was the most peaceful in the entire history of the Principate ; while there were several military disturbances throughout the Empire in his time, in Mauretania , Iudaea , and amongst the Brigantes in Britannia , none of them are considered serious. The unrest in Britannia is believed to have led to the construction of the Antonine Wall from the Firth of Forth to the Firth of Clyde , although it was soon abandoned. He was virtually unique among emperors in that he dealt with these crises without leaving Italy once during his reign, but instead dealt with provincial matters of war and peace through their governors or through imperial letters to the cities such as Ephesus (of which some were publicly displayed). This style of government was highly praised by his contemporaries and by later generations. Of the public transactions of this period we have scant information, but, to judge by what we possess, those twenty-two years were not remarkably eventful in comparison to those before and after his; the surviving evidence is not complete enough to determine whether we should interpret, with older scholars, that he wisely curtailed the activities of the Roman Empire to a careful minimum, or perhaps that he was uninterested in events away from Rome and Italy and his inaction contributed to the pressing troubles that faced not only Marcus Aurelius but also the emperors of the third century. German historian Ernst Kornemann has had it in his Römische Geschichte [2 vols., ed. by H. Bengtson, Stuttgart 1954] that the reign of Antoninus comprised "a succession of grossly wasted opportunities," given the upheavals that were to come. There is more to this argument, given that the Parthians in the East were themselves soon to make no small amount of mischief after Antoninus' passing. Kornemann's brief is that Antoninus might have waged preventive wars to head off these outsiders. Scholars place Antoninus Pius as the leading candidate for fulfilling the role as a friend of Rabbi Judah the Prince . According to the Talmud (Avodah Zarah 10a-b), Rabbi Judah was very wealthy and greatly revered in Rome. He had a close friendship with "Antoninus", possibly Antoninus Pius, who would consult Rabbi Judah on various worldly and spiritual matters. After the longest reign since Augustus (surpassing Tiberius by a couple of months), Antoninus died of fever at Lorium in Etruria , about twelve miles (19 km) from Rome, on 7 March 161, giving the keynote to his life in the last word that he uttered when the tribune of the night-watch came to ask the password—"aequanimitas" (equanimity). His body was placed in Hadrian's mausoleum , a column was dedicated to him on the Campus Martius , and the temple he had built in the Forum in 141 to his deified wife Faustina was rededicated to the deified Faustina and the deified Antoninus. Historiography The only account of his life handed down to us is that of the Augustan History , an unreliable and mostly fabricated work. Antoninus is unique among Roman emperors in that he has no other biographies. Historians have therefore turned to public records for what details we know. In later scholarship Antoninus in many ways was the ideal of the landed gentleman praised not only by ancient Romans, but also by later scholars of classical history, such as Edward Gibbon or the author of the article on Antoninus Pius in the ninth edition of the Encyclopedia Britannicaca: A few months afterwards, on Hadrian's death, he was enthusiastically welcomed to the throne by the Roman people, who, for once, were not disappointed in their anticipation of a happy reign. For Antoninus came to his new office with simple tastes, kindly disposition, extensive experience, a well-trained intelligence and the sincerest desire for the welfare of his subjects. Instead of plundering to support his prodigality, he emptied his private treasury to assist distressed provinces and cities, and everywhere exercised rigid economy (hence the nickname κυμινοπριστης "cummin-splitter"). Instead of exaggerating into treason whatever was susceptible of unfavorable interpretation, he spurned the very conspiracies that were formed against him into opportunities for demonstrating his clemency. Instead of stirring up persecution against the Christians, he extended to them the strong hand of his protection throughout the empire. Rather than give occasion to that oppression which he regarded as inseparable from an emperor's progress through his dominions, he was content to spend all the years of his reign in Rome, or its neighborhood. Frequently Asked d Questions How long until my order is shipped? Depending on the volume of sales, it may take up to 5 business days for shipment of your order after the receipt of payment. How will I know when the order was shipped? After your order has shipped, you will be left positive feedback, and that date should be used as a basis of estimating an arrival date. After you shipped the order, how long will the mail take? 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